And I repeat that, if the time has come when pupils of state-supported schools, kindergartens, grammar schools, or high schools, can defy and flout orders of school officials to keep their minds on their own schoolwork, it is the beginning of a new revolutionary era of permissiveness in this country fostered by the judiciary. A student's rights, therefore, do not embrace merely the classroom hours. The following Associated Press article appeared in the Washington Evening Star, January 11, 1969, p. They sought nominal damages and an injunction against a regulation that the respondents had promulgated banning the wearing of armbands. Tinker, 15 years old, and petitioner Christopher Eckhardt, 16 years old, attended high schools in Des Moines, Iowa. On the one hand, it forestalls compulsion by law of the acceptance of any creed or the practice of any form of worship.
During their suspension the students' parents sued the school for violating their children's right to free speech. Tucker, , 487 1960 ; Engel v. On the contrary, the action of the school authorities appears to have been based upon an urgent wish to avoid the controversy which might result from the expression, even by the silent symbol of armbands, of opposition to this Nation's part in the conflagration in Vietnam. He argued that the conduct in question had been disruptive and that school officials had the right to control their classrooms. Subsequent court cases have put more limits on expression. School officials do not possess absolute authority over their students.
Finding nothing in this record which impugns the good faith of respondents in promulgating the armband regulation, I would affirm the judgment below. The Court of Appeals, sitting en banc, affirmed by an equally divided court. Des Moines 1969 Summary The 1969 landmark case of Tinker v. On December 16, Mary Beth and Christopher wore black armbands to their schools. In order for the State in the person of school officials to justify prohibition of a particular expression of opinion, it must be able to show that its action was caused by something more than a mere desire to avoid the discomfort and unpleasantness that always accompany an unpopular viewpoint.
But, in our system, undifferentiated fear or apprehension of disturbance is not enough to overcome the right to freedom of expression. For homework, have them access the If you have three days. As we have discussed, the record does not demonstrate any facts which might reasonably have led school authorities to forecast substantial disruption of or material interference with school activities, and no disturbances or disorders on the school premises in fact occurred. He pointed out that a school is not like a hospital or a jail enclosure. Alabama State Board of Education, 273 F. The Constitution says that Congress and the States may not abridge the right to free speech. It does not concern aggressive, disruptive action or even group demonstrations.
The United States District Court refused to hold that the state school order violated the First and Fourteenth Amendments. A protest march against the war had been recently held in Washington, D. First Amendment rights, applied in light of the special characteristics of the school environment, are available to teachers and students. Specifically, people wondered, 'Do First Amendment rights extend to the classroom? The principals may have had general and nonspecific fears of a disturbance, but such fears were not sufficient to overcome the students' First Amendment rights. So even though the First Amendment protects freedom of expression, there are some limits on it. In order for the State in the person of school officials to justify prohibition of a particular expression of opinion, it must be able to show that its action was caused by something more than a mere desire to avoid the discomfort and unpleasantness that always accompany an unpopular viewpoint. Students engaged in such activities are apparently confident that they know far more about how to operate public school systems than do their parents, teachers, and elected school officials.
The principal had deleted student articles about teen pregnancy and about the impact of parental divorce on students at the school. Thus, the Amendment embraces two concepts -- freedom to believe and freedom to act. They were all sent home and suspended from school until they would come back without their armbands. The school didn't see it that way. Both individuals supporting the war and those opposing it were quite vocal in expressing their views. People across the country were divided on the subject of the Vietnam War.
Nevertheless, the Tinker decision changed the legal landscape for students who sought to exercise their First Amendment rights. This is not only an inevitable part of the process of attending school; it is also an important part of the educational process. Instead, a particular symbol -- black armbands worn to exhibit opposition to this Nation's involvement in Vietnam -- was singled out for prohibition. One defying pupil was Paul Tinker, 8 years old, who was in the second grade; another, Hope Tinker, was 11 years old and in the fifth grade; a third member of the Tinker family was 13, in the eighth grade; and a fourth member of the same family was John Tinker, 15 years old, an 11th grade high school pupil. Students could not be singled out for their political views without that action being a violation of the First Amendment. Vitale, 1962 ; Keyishian v. The Tinker Test is a measure still used today by schools.
Dissent: Justices Hugo Black and John M. District Court and asked for an injunction to restrain school officials from disciplining the students. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit forcing the Tinkers and Eckhardts to appeal to the Supreme Court directly. The Court, in a 7—2 decision, overturned the lower court rulings. Only a few of the 18,000 students in the school system wore the black armbands.