MSNBC: ‘Lesbians are cool’ T-shirt puts Massachusetts school in national spotlight

12 03 2012
By staff

A Massachusetts high school has set off a national free speech debate after a student was reprimanded for wearing a T-shirt that proclaimed, “All the Cool Girls Are Lesbians.”

The student, who hasn’t been publicly identified, complained in a letter to Judith Flanagan Kennedy, chairwoman of the Lynn, Mass., School Committee — and mayor of the town — that in January, she was asked by a vice principal to cover up the T-shirt and never wear it again, the Lynn Daily Item reported.

In the letter, as quoted by the Daily Item, the student said a teacher referred her to a vice principal because of the T-shirt. The vice principal agreed with the teacher that the shirt was inappropriate “because it’s political and offensive to some people,” the student said she was told.

“Well, frankly I’m the one who feels offended,” she wrote in the letter to Kennedy, adding: “The word lesbian is not inappropriate. Saying it is, is calling homosexuality inappropriate.”

Kennedy agreed with her.

Kennedy told members of the School Committee at its meeting last week that she had done some legal research, “and I believe she is right.”

The school’s dress code prohibits clothing that depicts weapons, drugs or alcohol, or anything considered disruptive, but it doesn’t specify gender issues, Kennedy said. The school has a Gay/Straight Alliance, demonstrating its tolerance for such expressions, she said.

(Full Story)




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