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dwilawyer

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20 minutes ago, dwilawyer said:

School kids are, de facto, denied First Amendment rights to anything they say--because they are public school kids.  And they can't just change public schools or public school districts if they disagree. The system as it's currently constituted doesn't allow for that.

That quote in the WP article is an incorrect statement, Tinker was pretty clear that students have 1st Amendment rights as long as it doesn't disrupt school (wearing black armbands to class during Vietnam War was protected non-verbal expression, school couldn't discipline students unless they could demonstrate conduct caused a "disruption."

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7 hours ago, dwilawyer said:

Yes we are, but the doctrine you are referring to is "at will" meaning you can be terminated for any reason, or no reason as long as it is not because of the persons gender, race, religion, national origin, being over 40, or.a recognized disability under the ADA.

 

You have to pay unemployment benefits (which are insured)  and face increased rates unless you terminate "for cause."

 

"Right to work state" refers to an employer not being allowed to deny employment to someone because they are not a member of labor union or other labor organization. 

Correct.  Thanks for clarifying. 

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9 hours ago, dwilawyer said:

That quote in the WP article is an incorrect statement, Tinker was pretty clear that students have 1st Amendment rights as long as it doesn't disrupt school...school couldn't discipline students unless they could demonstrate conduct caused a "disruption."

I expect that the "Tinker test" might be further amplified and perhaps strengthened (or changed) in the upcoming case. 

 

From personal perspective, it's still clear that school administrations are still pushing back hard on that legal test or even unbalancing the test since school administrations still seem to make a high number of decisions limiting student freedoms, especially in light of the last 25 years or so with the advent of smart phones, social media, and blogging--which didn't really exist 25 years ago as a significant factor in public life.  We're again having to redefine what that balance now means in light of the effectiveness of these new technologies. 

 

The limitations of First Amendment rights (on both ends of the spectrum) seems to be more significant of late. Clearly, this is also an opportunity to address some of the newer SCOTUS justices' perceived "bias against conservatism", perhaps shoring up student freedom of speech against school administration perceptions of what constitutes  "disruption". 

 

We'll see what comes.  It's usually a mixed bag (as viewed from individual point of view)--no one is fully satisfied with the outcome.  It's a tradeoff, as are all decisions at that level.

 

For the forum participants that are more narrowly focused on matters of music and audio...

 

 

Here's one that's a lot easier to watch (and listen to):

 

Chris

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2 hours ago, Chris A said:

We'll see what comes.  It's usually a mixed bag (as viewed from individual point of view)--no one is fully satisfied with the outcome.  It's a tradeoff, as are all decisions at that level.

The Court was looking for a "Test" to apply, the questions and answers were pretty entertaining.

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5 hours ago, dwilawyer said:

The Court was looking for a "Test" to apply, the questions and answers were pretty entertaining.

See https://www.c-span.org/video/?510036-1/mahanoy-area-schools-district-v-bl-oral-argument

 

All Justices seem to have problems with the degree of punishment in this particular case (implying to me that they believe that the school administration was out of bounds in this particular case in the degree of punishment...and that it took a court case to rectify the situation--which the student won), AND the problem of the complexity of applying both Tinker and other First Amendment restrictions.  It sure sounds like the Court is going to modify some uses of Tinker unless there is a clearer standard or standards to apply.

 

Chris

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4 hours ago, Chris A said:

See https://www.c-span.org/video/?510036-1/mahanoy-area-schools-district-v-bl-oral-argument

 

All Justices seem to have problems with the degree of punishment in this particular case (implying to me that they believe that the school administration was out of bounds in this particular case in the degree of punishment...and that it took a court case to rectify the situation--which the student won), AND the problem of the complexity of applying both Tinker and other First Amendment restrictions.  It sure sounds like the Court is going to modify some uses of Tinker unless there is a clearer standard or standards to apply.

 

Chris

I'm a bit more worried. The student won in the Circuit Court, the School District is the Petitioner who asked the Court to hear the case. If they didn't want to mess with it they would have just refused Cert.

 

Instead they took it up on a very narrow issue of whether the proper "test" was applied, and if not, what should the test be. 

 

Question on what is "school speech", can a kid tweet answers to Geometry homework, etc., etc. At least 4 of them hope to monkey with it (that how Cert. is granted) and it could come out looking like a Camel. One response was that District's could have a monitor to look at all social media posts and make a determination whether it was constitutionally protected or not.

 

 

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I'm similarly worried.  As the Q&A went on, the last attorney (head of the ACLU?) was being grilled, and several of the justices seemed pretty "spring loaded" in their expectations to their hypothetical questions (at least to my legally untrained ears)--and they tended to keep cutting him off when he started to defend his answers to their, well, not very fair questions. 

 

I think the Third Circuit court basically got the decision right in a reasoned and workable way--at least from what I heard.  Why would the SCOTUS mess with that ruling?  It seemed pretty well thought out and workable.

 

What surprised me was the questioning from the specific justices--the conservative justices all seemed to ask questions that, to me,  obfuscated or distorted the issues. But then Kagan and Sotomayer also seemed to join in on the same type of questions, clearly trying to unbalance the decision of the Third Circuit court--not to simply understand--like they had already made up their minds on the answers.  Some of the justices seemed to listen more carefully to the answers (Gorsuch & Kavanaugh, for instance, IIRC). 

 

I assume that these were preliminary Q&As. (I'm not familiar with exactly how the SCOTUS works from a procedural viewpoint.) So I'm still hoping that reason will prevail, and the students' First Amendment rights become the standard for out-of-school issues.  (It's the only interpretation that seems to make much sense to me.) Trying to extend Tinker to the entirety of the student's lives seems like an unreasonable power grab to me--in order to solve issues that Congress hasn't yet passed laws to control. I think that a lot more kids are going to be "shut down" or even quitting public school if the school administrations are armed with more power over the kids lives in order to "assure order".  If it's that bad, then why doesn't Congress take up the matter?  It's their bailiwick.

 

Chris

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