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Court OKs Antigay Shirts

Court OKs Antigay Shirts

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The seventh circuit court of appeals has ruled that students at Neuqua Valley High School in Illinois can wear T-shirts that criticize gay people.

In its opinion, the court said a "school that permits advocacy of the rights of homosexual students cannot be allowed to stifle criticism of homosexuality."

The shirts were worn by antigay students in 2006 and carried the message, "Be Happy, Not Gay." The shirts were later changed to "Be Happy, Be Straight" -- later a dean crossed the words "Be Straight" off one of the shirts. The students wore the shirts in response to the Day of Silence, which draws attention to bullying of LGBT teens.

The Indian Prairie School District argued that the antigay shirts should be prohibited because they cause emotional distress to some students.

"The school argued (and still argues) that banning 'Be Happy, Not Gay' was just a matter of protecting the 'rights' of the students against whom derogatory comments are directed," the court said. "But people in our society do not have a legal right to prevent criticism of their beliefs or even their way of life."

Read the full story here.

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