Schools banning LGBTQ+ student’s right to expression is against the first ammendment

a+young+caucasian+person%2C+seen+from+behind%2C+holding+a+transgender+pride+flag+over+his+or+her+head+against+the+blue+sky

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a young caucasian person, seen from behind, holding a transgender pride flag over his or her head against the blue sky

Schools inputting bans on LGBTQ+ students’ self-expressions is against the first amendment and should never be allowed to occur.

Many schools across the US have placed bans and restrictions prohibiting LGBTQ+ students from dressing as their gender identity, using their preferred pronouns, or participating in sports as the gender they identify as.

LGBTQ+ youth already face enough discrimination and hatred from homophobic and transphobic people in the real world as it is. School is supposed be a place where all students, regardless of identity, can feel safe and be able to express themselves. 

As stated in the 1969 court case Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District, “Students do not shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.”

Among other societal factors, the rise of infractions of this statement has contributed to the fact that 86% of transgender youth have considered suicide at some point in their lives according to a study from the National Library of Medicine. Despite this heartbreaking statistic, many school officials still stand firm in their anti-LGBTQ+ beliefs.

A school district in Wisconsin made headlines recently for banning teachers from displaying pride materials or including their pronouns in emails. Regarding the ban, the superintendent, Stephen Plum, said “We’re in a world where politics are highlighted, and it puts people in uncomfortable positions.” However, he added later that necklaces displaying a Christan cross would be permissible, stating “Discrete jewelry, I think, is acceptable.”

It’s safe to assume that a ban on “political” imagery that includes LGBTQ+ symbols, but doesn’t include religious symbols, is a targeted attack, especially when both topics have been a part of political discussions in recent times. Despite that, an individual’s identity should never be whittled down to nothing more than a subject of politics.

Teachers in Wisconsin, as well as activists around the nation, have been fighting the installment of bans on LGBTQ+ expression for a long time now. It can be assumed that the future will hold less bigotry as the youth grows up and gains the ability to influence decisions made by the leaders of local and federal institutions.