Block on Trump's Asylum Ban Upheld by Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear the student free-speech case about a school's ban on "I Heart Boobies" cancer awareness bracelets, Reuters reports.
That means the August 2013 decision by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which sided with the students who wanted to don the bracelets, remains intact.
It's a major victory for the students in the Easton Area School District in Pennsylvania.
Upon receiving the school district's petition for certiorari, the U.S. Supreme Court considered a number of factors on whether to hear the case. Unfortunately, we don't know why the Court declined to hear the case. It rejected the case from the school district without comment, which is standard.
Regardless, the decision leaves intact the 3rd Circuit's ruling: School officials can prohibit statements that are lewd or obscene. However, messages that might offend some, but also make a social or political statement, are protected by the First Amendment.
If the Supreme Court had accepted the case, it could potentially have joined the ranks of historic decisions issued by the Court on public school dress codes and the constitutional rights of students. The bracelets case referenced the following cases:
The school district claimed the 3rd Circuit had invented a new test for student free speech by relying on the concurring opinion (not the majority opinion) in the Supreme Court's Morse decision.
Though the Supreme Court passed on the "I Heart Boobies" case this time around, the issue is still split nationally and could bubble up again in the future.
After all, even the 3rd Circuit showed a dramatic split over the matter. The court ordered an en banc review of the case -- as in, the entire circuit court -- because there was disagreement among the judges. Even en banc, the court was split 9-5 in favor of the students.
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