Washington, D.C. (30 April 2008) – As tens of thousands of people across the nation expressed their pro-life beliefs by wearing pro-life T-shirts, some public school officials censored and intimidated students for wearing the shirts to school on American Life League’s sixth annual National Pro-life T-shirt Day, held yesterday.
"School administrators are claiming that the shirts are inappropriate, demanding that the students change, invert the shirt or be suspended," said Erik Whittington, director for American Life League’s youth outreach. "At some point these school officials will have to realize that what they are doing is a violation of students’ constitutional first amendment right to free speech."
Outraged by harassment from school administrators, several parents and students called American Life League yesterday for assistance. Each caller was referred to the St. Thomas More Law Center to pursue legal action.
"Even grade school kids have been discriminated against, being moved to separate parts of the school," said Whittington. "Of all the offensive T-shirts that are allowed to be worn in public schools, displaying sexual or drug related messages, pro-life students are being singled out. As more calls come in, we will be referring for legal action."
Last week, 10 Ohio students called American Life League for help after being harassed for wearing pro-life T-shirts to school. The students were threatened with suspension and exclusion from participation in school sports, prom and even walking across the stage during graduation if they did not change or invert their pro-life shirts.
American Life League was cofounded in 1979 by Judie Brown. It is the largest grassroots Catholic pro-life organization in the United States and is committed to the protection of all innocent human beings from the moment of creation to death. For more information or press inquiries, please contact Michael Hichborn at 540.659.7900.
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