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Seattle Catholic
A Journal of Catholic News and Views
18 Dec 2002

3475 Plymouth Road, Suite 100, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105-2550
734-827-2001 - Fax: 734-998-4778

Brian Burch
January 27, 2003
Total of 1 page

Student's Pro-Life T-shirt Is Equivalent to the Swastika Says School Principal; Thomas More Law Center Enters Fray

ANN ARBOR, MI - The mother of an honor student at Abington Junior High School in Pennsylvania was told by the principal that her son's pro-life t-shirt was unacceptable school clothing because its message was the equivalent of the swastika. The t-shirt displayed the messages, "Abortion is Homicide. You will not silence my message. You will not mock my God. You will stop killing my generation. Rock for Life."

This past November, the principal told the student to either cover the shirt or turn the shirt inside out. After the student turned the shirt inside out, his mother contacted the principal and was told that the message was inappropriate to be displayed in school. He said the shirt and message were the equivalent of a swastika being displayed on a shirt, which the principal would not allow in school. The mother and son then contacted the Thomas More Law Center.

The Thomas More Law Center's Associate Counsel Edward White sent a four-page demand letter to school officials explaining the student's clearly established constitutional right to wear his pro-life clothing and demanding that the school take immediate action to provide written assurance that he will be permitted to wear his pro-life shirt to school.

The Law Center explained that the student's speech did not cause any substantial and material disruptions to the workings of the school and that there was no legal basis on which to restrict his speech. The Law Center also noted that the mother and son have the option of seeking relief in federal court should the school not change its decision.

The Law Center requested a response from the school officials by January 31, 2003.

The Thomas More Law Center defends the religious freedom of Christians, time-honored family values, and the sanctity of human life through litigation, education, and related activities. The Law Center provides its services at no charge, and depends on individual donations, foundations, and corporations for financial support.

The IRS recognizes the Law Center as a 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax deductible. You may contact the Law Center at (734) 827-2001 or visit its website at

Brian Burch
Director of Development & Communications
Thomas More Law Center
734-827-2001 (Phone)
734-998-4778 (Fax)
734-730-1018 (Mobile)


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