Judge orders school to read student's pro-life announcement

In a ruling against school censorship of student speech, a court has ordered a public school to read a student’s announcement on its public-address system during its regular announcement period.

The order affects Skyline High School in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which shut down speech that effectively was a promotion for students to be active regarding a proposed state constitutional amendment that would hurt women and unborn children.

According to the Thomas More Law Center, the school was told the read the following:

Attention Students: Are you interested in joining our efforts to protect the health of women and children? If proposal 3 is passed it would eliminate health and safety regulations, legalize late term and partial birth abortion… and eliminate informed consent laws. If so, email us at [email protected].

U.S. District Judge Paul D. Borman issued the order affecting the statement by the Republican Club.

Proposal 3 effectively would embed the “right” to any abortion at any time in the state constitution, if adopted by voters.

A lawsuit had been filed charging that school officials were discriminating against the club by allowing all sorts of pro-abortion and leftist messaging, but censoring the opposing view.

“The case alleged violations of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the Equal Access Act, and was filed on behalf of David Nielsen and his minor son, a senior and president of the Republican Club and the Republican Club as a separate plaintiff,” the center said.

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Erin Mersino, a lawyer for the center, said, “The Constitution protects a student’s right to have a different viewpoint from others and share it within the walls of a public school. How else will students learn tolerance toward opinions to which they disagree or how to thrive in our pluralistic society? The Supreme Court cautioned against viewpoint discrimination in the schools, warning it creates ‘enclaves of totalitarianism.'”

The legal team explained Skyline High School officials routinely allowed students and student groups to share pro-abortion and left-leaning viewpoints over its public address system to promote abortion, Roe v. Wade, and Planned Parenthood.

“The school has also allowed student clubs to promote the Black Lives Matter movement, express views on the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin trial, promote the idea of climate change, and promote the visit of a democratic congresswoman seeking re-election. In short, Skyline High School’s record shows it does not hesitate to share certain viewpoints over the morning announcements,” the center’s report said.

But, “After Plaintiffs submitted their announcement, they received an email from the school stating that ‘your announcement is not going to be read or posted due to its political nature.’ That same day, Plaintiffs met with the principal’s secretary who rejected the announcement and confirmed that the announcement was not read because, in his opinion, it was ‘political.’ Given the school’s history of allowing other viewpoints to be shared freely, the school’s process and decision did not appear fair.”

The judge noted that the school appeared to be treating different messages differently, and ordered the announcement to be read.

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