June 3, 2008

Jacqui Cheng writes for Ars Technica:

Calling someone a douchebag on the Internet usually doesn’t result in much in the way of major consequences. That is unless, of course, you’re in high school and the douchebag in question is a school official. In the case of Lewis S. Mills High School senior Avery Doninger, the use of the d-word on her blog resulted in her losing her position as class secretary—something that she and her mother believe is unfair and a violation of her First Amendment rights. Unfortunately for the Doningers, the courts have thus far sided with the school’s decision. The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld a lower court decision yesterday, saying that while it was sympathetic to Avery’s plight, the school did not violate her constitutional rights.

It should be obvious by now, statist training camps — excuse me, public schools — are no place to be if you want to claim your rights are protected under the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, as the youngster above learned.

Now if she had called the janitor a “douchebag,” chances are there would not have been such a hullabaloo and punitive measures. But then the lass in question made the mistake of using the “d” word in reference to a “school official,” or a minion of the state, and we all know they enjoy special rights. After all, some people have more rights than others, that is to say petty officials in public re-education camps have more rights than the rest of us, or at least their charges, the children of the rest of us, the commoners, the tax payers.

Maybe after Avery Doninger graduates and has children of her own, she’ll consider home schooling — that is if home schooling is still legal by the time she graduates and has children.

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