High School removes OpEd from school paper for saying that gays "sh...

I'm not awake five minutes and I find this.  The sad part is that it was a 15-year-old that wrote the OpEd.

Tags: Wisconsin, anti-gay, high school, legal action

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I have mixed emotions about this.  On the hand saying gays should be put to death is abhorrent.  On the other hand I am REALLY anti-censorship.

Of course, if anyone should be put to death, it should be the editor of the paper

Isn't this as wrong as the childish editor's words?

If in an op-ed piece, this kid wants to advocate against homosexuality, that's ONE thing.  However, if he wishes to enforce Leviticus 20:13, as quoted in his article, which sentences homosexuals to death, then as far as I'm concerned, he is advocating violence against gays and Lesbians, and therewith he has crossed a line, insofar as free speech is concerned.

that is a tricky situation.  we have freedom of speech insomuch as we aren't threatening to harm another.  i mean, you can say "i hate black people and i'm gonna kill that sumbitch Obama", and you are allowed to do so, but you may get arrested for issuing such a proclomation.  i think that he should be allowed to express his opinions, but perhaps he could be in some legal trouble for having a dangerous position, particularly if it leads to a person's harm. 

More perspective on this story from towleroad.  As far as I can tell, the editorial did not call for actions against LGBT people, it quoted bible verses that do the same. It's a pretty lame editorial, but then it is a high school kid.  Still, LGBT kids might feel threatened if they were openly gay and going to that high school. I would not want to be a gay kid in the high school and be reading that.  High school can suck bad enough as it is.  

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As for censorship, it depends.  I think in some cases words are as damaging as actions, and lead to actions.  I don't know where the line is drawn, but I don't think free speech is 100% sacred in 100% of all cases.  The old "fire in the theatre" argument is an extreme example.  I also had to experience libelous gossip in the workplace, where sniping coworkers started a rumor about me after my father died, then my mother died, and they were dumping huge amounts of work on me.  They claimed I was "unhappy" and, as a man "might go postal".  The truth is, Barney the purple dinosaur is more likely to go postal than I am, and they knew that.  This hateful bullying, "free speech" changed my career.  I demanded transfer, and got it (because I was right).  Was their speech free, when it was potentially career destroying, and without any merit? whatsoever?  The issue, for me, again, is where to draw the line.  Not all speech should be free.

interesting reaction - being from outside of the UK it's not shocking on the freedom of speech front, but on the thing that was said - American does seem to have pioneered this freedom of speech idea - it's quite extreme - I suppose it does seem more fair to allow everyone equal right to say what they think - better than having them just plot in private - at least you know what they're planning!

Remember that the paper also has freedom of expression and doesn't have to print things like this.  They are allowed to make editorial decisions.  Does the kid have freedom of expression?  Yeah, though he doesn't seem to know his own Bible.  But the school and the paper also have the right to decide what they publish.  Reminds me of when Dr Laura got in so much trouble for her n-word rant, claiming that her first amendment rights had been violated.  What she didn't understand was that the govt didn't shut her down, the radio station did.  They're allowed not to want her on the air.  Her advertisers are allowed to pull their sponsorship.  You have freedom of speech, but others have the right to pull their support, not allow you on their station or paper.  You have freedom of speech, but not freedom from consequences.

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