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Word Count: 437
Frankly my dear I dont give a damn When I was a high school student the use of those words in a public forum shocked the Nation Today Clark Gables four-letter expletive is less offensive than it was then Nevertheless I assume that high school administrators may prohibit the use of that word in classroom discussion and even in extracurricular activities that are sponsored by the school and held on school premises For I believe a school faculty must regulate the content as well as the style of student speech in carrying out its educational mission however if a student is to be punished for using offensive speech he has the right to be notified of the scope of the prohibition and the consequences of its violation The interest in free speech protected by the First Amendment and the interest in fair procedure protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment combine to require this conclusion The student was an outstanding person The fact that he was chosen by the student body to speak at the schools graduation showed that he was respected by his peers This is relevant for two reasons It confirms the conclusion that the punishment was serious enough to justify invocation of the School Districts grievance procedures More importantly it indicates that he probably could determine better than a judge whether an audience composed of his peers would be offended The fact that the speech may not have been offensive to his audience does not mean that he had a constitutional right to deliver it For it is the schools responsibility to set the rules of conduct in an educational institution However it does mean that he should not be punished for speaking truthfully in a school assembly if he had no reason to anticipate any consequences He could have anticipated consequences if they would have been stated in one of three ways 1-It violated the
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