As policies spread, free-speech disputes ending up in courts nationwide
It took only an hour for parents in Omaha, Neb., to get in touch with the American Civil Liberties Union. Their children — 23 of them — had been suspended from school for wearing the wrong clothes.
The teenagers, all students at Millard South High School, were ordered to stay home from one to three days in late August for wearing T-shirts that memorialized Julius Robinson, 18, a Millard South football player who was shot to death in June. The shirts were being sold to help raise money so Robinson’s family could buy a headstone for his grave.
Robinson was “just a really good guy,” said Dan Kuhr, a friend who designed the shirts. “He didn’t cause a lot of trouble.”
But to officials of the Millard Public Schools, the words “Julius RIP” on the shirts were disruptive. After consulting with Omaha police, they also said the shirts could be considered gang-related...