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Sunday, 16 June 2013

Arrested 14-Year-Old Faces Jail for Wearing NRA "Protect Your Right" T-Shirt

“Protect Your Right” NRA (National Rifle Association) T-shirt

Whatever you think of the gun debate in America, this goes too far.

Marcum, a 14-year-old-boy from West Virginia got into an argument with a teacher for wearing his NRA (National Rifle Association) T-shirt with the image of a firearm and the words “Protect Your Right” printed on it at his school.

He was arrested for disturbing the education process and for obstructing an officer — the latter, according to court documents, because Marcum refused to stop talking, thus hindering the arresting officer from doing his job.

Marcum was suspended from school, after which he returned to class wearing the exact same shirt, as did other students in a show of solidarity.

He is now facing a $500 fine and a year in jail.

From The Blaze:
WOWK-TV reported Jared Marcum saying he never thought there would be a problem with his pro-Second Amendment apparel.

“I never thought it would go this far because honestly I don’t see a problem with this. There shouldn’t be a problem with this,” Marcum told WOWK-TV.

Police confirmed that Marcum had been arrested and faced charges of obstruction and disturbing the education process after getting into an argument over the shirt with a teacher at Logan Middle School, which is south of Charleston.

Logan Middle School’s policy regarding dress states:

"A student will not dress or groom in a manner that disrupts the educational process or is detrimental to the health, safety or welfare of others. A student will not dress in a manner that is distractive or indecent, to the extent that it interferes with the teaching and learning process, including wearing any apparel that displays or promotes any drug-, alcohol- or tobacco-related product that is prohibited in school buildings, on school grounds, in school-leased or owned vehicles, and at all school-affiliated functions."

The student’s father, Allen Lardieri, told WOWK that the shirt didn’t violate this policy, nor did his son become aggressive when confronted about it.

“I will go to the ends of the earth, I will call people, I will write letters, I will do everything in the legal realm to make sure this does not happen again,” Lardieri said.
It doesn't sound like Marcum's shirt violated the school's policy. It looks more like the school and police violated Marcum's right to free expression.

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