To translate that proposition into a workable constitutional rule, I would, in cases like this, cast upon those complaining the burden of showing that a particular school measure was motivated by other than legitimate school concerns -- for example, a desire to prohibit the expression of an unpopular point of view, while permitting expression of the dominant opinion. While a school board will receive some deference from courts, it must be able to cite something more than discomfort, awkwardness, or inconvenience as a basis for restricting speech. They may not be confined to the expression of those sentiments that are officially approved. State Board of Education, 200 F. A concern that the speech or expressive conduct would interfere with school discipline is an example of a justification that probably would persuade a court to uphold a policy rationally connected to that concern.
Red paint was thrown on our house. President Lyndon Johnson used that authority to order the first U. Any word spoken, in class, in the lunchroom, or on the campus, that deviates from the views of another person may start an argument or cause a disturbance. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa upheld the prohibition against armbands. This has been the unmistakable holding of this Court for almost 50 years. Some of his friends are still in school.
In these circumstances, their conduct was within the protection of the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment and the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth. Des Moines Independent Community School District No. And the same reasons are equally applicable to curtailing in the States' public schools the right to complete freedom of expression. He thought that it should be strictly limited to speech alone. First, Tinker is a landmark case that defines the constitutional rights of students in public schools. Case Commentary Even if a topic is controversial, and some disruption may occur, expressive conduct is protected by the First Amendment.
We properly read it to permit reasonable regulation of speech-connected activities in carefully restricted circumstances. Some politicians insisted that the United States stay involved, while others resisted escalation. When the students refused to remove the armbands, they were suspended from school. Justia Annotations is a forum for attorneys to summarize, comment on, and analyze case law published on our site. Over the years, the courts have clarified when and how speech can, and cannot, be restricted by the government.
Board of Regents, , 603 1967 ; Epperson v. The Eighth Circuit decision was a tie, which means the decision of the lower court stands. Des Moines, both offered dissenting opinions of the case. In the end, we decided to go ahead and wear the armbands, and some of us were suspended. For legal advice, please contact your attorney.
The minority viewpoint needs to be heard because, in the long term, it may shape public opinion. On the one hand, it forestalls compulsion by law of the acceptance of any creed or the practice of any form of worship. In December, 1965, a group of adults and students in Des Moines held a meeting at the Eckhardt home. What do you think the U. After an evidentiary hearing, the District Court dismissed the complaint.
Nebraska, 1923 , and Bartels v. Alabama State Board of Education, 294 F. Mary Beth Tinker also wore her armband on that first day. District Court for the District of Alaska ruled in favor of the school officials, agreeing that there had been no violation of the 1 st Amendment. Contacting Justia or any attorney through this site, via web form, email, or otherwise, does not create an attorney-client relationship. Skrupa, , 729, 730, after a thorough review of the old cases, was able to conclude in 1963: There was a time when the Due Process Clause was used by this Court to strike down laws which were thought unreasonable, that is, unwise or incompatible with some particular economic or social philosophy.
Accordingly, this case does not concern speech or action that intrudes upon the work of the schools or the rights of other students. In the end, it was estimated that more than two dozen students wore black armbands with peace symbols on them to Des Moines high, middle, and elementary schools. The school has a responsibility to provide a safe environment for students, and this includes discouraging use of illegal drugs. But even if the record were silent as to protests against the Vietnam war distracting students from their assigned class work, members of this Court, like all other citizens, know, without being told, that the disputes over the wisdom of the Vietnam war have disrupted and divided this country as few other issues ever have. The law was attacked as violative of due process and of the privileges and immunities clause, and as a deprivation of property and of liberty under the Fourteenth Amendment. They did not return to school until after the planned period for wearing armbands had expired -- that is, until after New Year's Day. To translate that proposition into a workable constitutional rule, I would, in cases like this, cast upon those complaining the burden of showing that a particular school measure was motivated by other than legitimate school concerns -- for example, a desire to prohibit the expression of an unpopular point of view, while permitting expression of the dominant opinion.
Justice McReynolds may have intimated to the contrary in Meyer v. Issaquena County Board of Education. In general, student free-speech rights extend only to expressions of a political, economic, or social nature that are not part of a school program. Freedom of conscience and freedom to adhere to such religious organization or form of worship as the individual may choose cannot be restricted by law. Change has been said to be truly the law of life, but sometimes the old and the tried and true are worth holding. On December 14, 1965, they met and adopted a policy that any student wearing an armband to school would be asked to remove it, and, if he refused, he would be suspended until he returned without the armband.
I The District Court recognized that the wearing of an armband for the purpose of expressing certain views is the type of symbolic act that is within the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment. Decisions since Tinker have taken a more restrictive view of free speech rights in this setting. Kuhlmeier 1988 , school officials can regulate student writing in school newspapers with much less evidence of disruption than they can for student T-shirts or student discussions in the cafeteria. Approximately 600 other students voluntarily attended the assembly at which the speech was given. Educators are not in violation of the 1st Amendment when censoring school-sponsored publications, so long as their actions are reasonably related to educational concerns.