Wednesday, November 09, 2011

License to Bully?

Uploaded by on Nov 6, 2011

A response to Decojuicer regarding a religious exemption in an anti-bullying bill that recently passed the Michigan State Senate.


1. Decojuicer's video:

2. The text of "Matt's Safe School Law" as passed by Michigan's State Senate:

3. State Senator Gretchen Whitmer's statement against the bill as passed:

4. One organization's look at anti-bullying statutes and policies across the United States:

5. For 1st Amendment purposes, 'religion' is not limited to the beliefs and practices of believers. The United States Supreme Court and lower courts have said that atheism comes within the scope of the amendment's religion guarantees. See, e.g., Welsh v. United States and
Kaufman v. McCaughtry

6. On the question that keeps coming up in comments about whether public schools may restrict speech, see, e.g., the United States Supreme Court's decision in Tinker v. Des Moines School District: As the Court said in that case, schools may limit free speech in various ways, but public schools are not "enclaves of totalitarianism" where school officials "possess absolute authority." Students "are 'persons' under our Constitution" and, as such, "are possessed of fundamental rights which the State must respect."

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