Blacklisted 12-year-old appeals lower court decision saying he has no free speech rights

The shirt that offended teachers at Nichols Middle School
Liam Morrison, wearing the evil shirt that he wore the
second time teachers at Nichols Middle School sent
him home.

Bring a gun to a knife fight: Today’s blacklist story is a follow-up from May. At that time 12-year-old Liam Morrison had discovered that his school, Nichols Middle School in Middleborough, Massachusetts, would not allow him to wear a shirt that said “There are only two genders,” and when he tried to return to school with a shirt that instead said “There are only censored genders,” he was sent home again.

Morrison and his parents enlisted the non-profit legal firm Alliance Defending Freedom to sue for his first amendment rights, but in June Judge Indira Talwani (appointed by Barack Obama) ruled that Morrison had no right to the first amendment, that his shirt infringed other “students’ rights to be ‘secure and to be let alone’ during the school day.”

You can read her convoluted ruling here [pdf], which required her to ignore numerous previous Supreme Court rulings that have specifically protected student speech exactly like Morrison’s. Moreover, her decision is also based on the fraudulent premise that people are supposed to be protected from speech that offends them. If people have the power to silence any speech because it hurts their feelings then no free speech exists at all. We will live in a totalitarian nightmare worse than anything dreamed up by George Orwell.
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Real pushback: Judge slams Southwest Airlines for violating settlement terms of free-speech court case

Southwest: Enemy to free speech

Bring a gun to a knife fight: We now come to another chapter in the continuing saga of flight attendant Charlene Carter, who was fired in 2017 by Southwest Airlines because she had expressed opinions that were not liked by both the company and union officials. In 2022 a jury awarded her $5.1 million against the airline and the union.

In December 2022 the federal judge in the case, Brantley Starr, reduced the settlement award to $810,000 in order “to comply with federal limits on punitive damages.” However, he also approved the rest of the jury award, which required Southwest to rehire Carter as well as change its policies that violated the first amendment, and announce these facts publicly to its employees.

Only a month later Carter went back to court, demanding that the judge sanction Southwest for violating settlement terms of her court victory. Not only did the company not admit error to its employees, as required by the settlement, one company-wide memo slandered Carter again, calling her previous communications for which she was fired as “inappropriate, harassing, and offensive.”

Judge Starr yesterday responded to Carter’s demand for relief, slamming Southwest in no uncertain terms.
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Pushback: Student wins against school officials who tried to suppress her first amendment rights

Maggie DeJong
Maggie DeJong, fighting back hard and winning

Bring a gun to a knife fight: In April Maggie DeJong, a student at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE), sued [pdf] three of the college’s faculty members for attempting in 2022 to both punish her and well as silence her from her first amendment right to speak, simply because some other leftist students complained they did not like her opinions. As I wrote in April when I first reported this story:

These officials issued three “no contact” orders against DeJong, forbidding her to have any contact with three co-students in her program, simply because she had religious and political opinions they disagreed with and did not wish to hear. This orders essentially blacklisted her from the program, because of its small nature, and were literally a priori gag orders on her right to freely express her opinions. The officials also admitted that DeJong had violated no school policy, nor did they provide her any due process before issuing the orders. When challenged by DeJong’s lawyers, the university quickly realized the utter illegality of these orders, and cancelled them.

Unlike most recent cases of blacklisting, DeJong did not sue the university but the individuals involved, making them personally liable. » Read more

Pushback: Christian adoption agency wins against NY’s attempt to force it to send kids to queer families

New Hope: willing to fight for its religious beliefs
New Hope: willing to fight for its
religious beliefs

Bring a gun to a knife fight: When two different New York state agencies threatened to investigate and penalize the Christian nonprofit New Hope Family Services because it refused to place orphans with queer couples, instead insisting that the children under its care be adopted only by a mother and father, New Hope sued — twice — and has now won two settlements that will allow it to continue to place children in the manner that matches its beliefs.

Faith-based adoption provider New Hope Family Services secured a second victory against New York state officials, after securing a favorable settlement and a payment of $250,000 for attorneys’ fees in a related lawsuit settled last month. In settlement of the second lawsuit—which challenged an attempt by a different New York state agency to punish New Hope for adhering to its religious convictions—New York officials agreed to pay an additional $25,000 in attorneys’ fees and costs, and broadly confirmed New Hope’s right to continue its critical work of placing infants in permanent homes without government harassment.

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Pushback: California loses big for trying to force churches to violate their religious beliefs

Mary Watanaba, head oppressor in California's health system
Mary Watanaba, head oppressor
in California’s health system

They’re coming for you next: After California health authorities in 2014 imposed a mandate requiring requiring churches to provide elective abortion coverage to its employees, four churches sued, and after a long court battle, have now won a $1.4 million settlement.

Alliance Defending Freedom [ADF] attorneys represent Skyline Wesleyan Church, located in the San Diego area, in one federal lawsuit, and Foothill Church in Glendora, Calvary Chapel Chino Hills in Chino, and The Shepherd of the Hills Church in Porter Ranch in another. Both lawsuits challenged California’s abortion-coverage mandate. In both cases, the courts ruled that the U.S. Constitution protects the churches’ freedom to operate according to their religious beliefs, which include their belief in the sanctity of unborn lives.

The rulings in both lawsuits (here and here [pdfs]) not only release the churches from the illegal abortion mandate, they both require payments to ADF and the church’s local attorneys to pay all legal costs. Interesting, in both lawsuits Mary Watanabe, the director of the California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) was named, and in one case she was the only defendant. Unfortunately, she walks away unharmed, because DMHC will pay for everything, out of tax dollars.

What made the mandate especially egregious is that it was written in league with officials at Planned Parenthood and the ACLU, as shown by emails [pdf] between DMHC and those officials. » Read more

Pushback: Student’s lawsuit against college officials for suppressing her First Amendment rights moves forward

Maggie DeJong
Maggie DeJong, willing fight back hard.

Bring a gun to a knife fight: Though she had quickly forced her school to back down from trying to blacklist her, as described in a previous blacklist story in 2022, Maggie DeJong has now won a major court decision with a ruling on March 20, 2023 by the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Illinois that her lawsuit against three administrators at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) can go forward.

More important, the ruling stated [pdf] that these three administrators — Jamie Ball (director for Equal Opportunity, Access and Title IX Coordination), Randall Penbrook (school chancellor), and Megan Robb (her teacher) — do not qualify in almost all circumstances for qualified immunity. They are liable for their actions in violating DeJong’s constitutional rights, including her right to free speech.

This is what happened in 2022: These officials issued three “no contact” orders against DeJong, forbidding her to have any contact with three co-students in her program, simply because she had religious and political opinions they disagreed with and did not wish to hear. This orders essentially blacklisted her from the program, because of its small nature, and were literally a priori gag orders on her right to freely express her opinions. The officials also admitted that DeJong had violated no school policy, nor did they provide her any due process before issuing the orders. When challenged by DeJong’s lawyers, the university quickly realized the utter illegality of these orders, and cancelled them.

You can read DeJong’s lawsuit complaint here [pdf]. Its most important aspect is that it is not suing Southern Illinois University but the actual individuals who committed the oppressive acts. » Read more

Today’s blacklisted American: Conservative students and pro-speech law firm slandered and threatened at University of Kansas

The University of Kansas Law School: Eager to blacklist

Today’s blacklisted American: When a chapter of the Federalist Society at the University of Kansas Law School scheduled an event featuring a speaker from the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a pro-speech legal firm that has won many cases at the Supreme Court, the school’s “Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Committee” falsely claimed ADF promoted “hate speech”, and two members of the school’s faculty then tried to get the chapter to cancel the event.

The story of what happened are outlined in detail by a justice of the Kansas Supreme Court, Caleb Stegall, in his resignation letter [pdf] in protest of the college’s unwillingness to defend the principle of free speech and open debate. As he wrote, first the law school administrator called a meeting with chapter’s board of students:
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Pushback: Students win $90K from University of Idaho for restricting their free speech

Idaho University bans religious speech
This college is still hostile to free speech.

Bring a gun to a knife fight: Three students who were punished last spring by the University of Idaho (UI) for daring to disagree publicly with an activist for the queer agenda have now won a $90K settlement as well as getting their records fully cleared.

As part of the settlement, university officials permanently rescinded the no-contact orders they had issued against Peter Perlot, Mark Miller, and Ryan Alexander, members of the Christian Legal Society chapter at the university, and Professor Richard Seamon, CLS’s faculty advisor, and paid $90,000.

I reported this case when it happened, noting that the university had essentially “decided that the only opinions that could be allowed were those that agreed with the queer political agenda, and acted unilaterally to punish these Christians for refusing to bow to that rule.” The university has now lost, and lost badly.
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Today’s blacklisted American: School officials attempt to censor and shut down conservative club at Utah high school

Copper Hills High School: No free speech allowed for conservatives!
Copper Hills HS: No free speech allowed for conservatives!

Persecution is now cool! School officials at Copper Hills High School in West Jordan, Utah, have repeatedly attempted to censor and block the conservative Turning Point USA chapter there, first by making it difficult for the students to form the club, then by telling them they had to remove some signs as well as always include opposing points of view in their displays. When the students objected these school officials then shut down their gathering entirely.

The specific oppressive actions of the school’s principal, Bryan Veazie, and his assistant principal, Rufine Einzinger (both reachable here), are well described in the letter [pdf] sent to Tracy J. Miller, the President of the Board of Education for the Jordan School District, by the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which is representing the students:
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Pushback: Parents and teachers sue Virginia school board for teaching queer sex to kids and lying about it to parents

The Harrisonburg school board
The Harrisonburg school board and its superintendent.

Bring a gun to a knife fight: Represented by the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), both parents and teachers on June 1st filed a lawsuit against the Harrisonburg City Public School Board for encouraging children to use incorrect sexual pronouns as it also indoctrinated the kids into the queer sex agenda, all while setting policies intended to conceal its actions from parents.

Upon a child’s request, school district policy requires staff to immediately begin using opposite-sex pronouns and forbids staff from sharing information with parents about their child’s request, instead instructing staff to mislead and deceive parents.

The lawsuit [pdf] is even more blunt than the press release above:
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Pushback: Three Idaho University students sue school for punishing them for having opinions

Idaho University bans religious speech
No free speech allowed at this college!

They’re coming for you next: Three students at the University of Idaho have sued the college’s administrators for punishing them simply because they publicly defended their religious belief.

Peter Perlot, Mark Miller, and Ryan Alexander are members of the Christian Legal Society [CLS] chapter at the University of Idaho. When Perlot and Miller joined most of the other members of CLS at a “moment of community” gathering to condemn a discriminatory slur written at another campus, a law student approached them to ask why CLS requires its officers to affirm the belief that marriage is between a man and a woman. Miller respectfully explained that the chapter requires this because it is the only view of marriage and sexuality affirmed in the Bible.

Soon after, Perlot left a handwritten note for the student and told her that he would be happy to discuss this further so that they could both be fully heard and better understand one another’s views. A few days later, the student and several others publicly denounced CLS’s actions at a panel with the American Bar Association. Alexander attended that meeting and explained that the characterizations were inaccurate, that the biggest discrimination he had seen on campus was the discrimination against CLS and its religious beliefs, and that he was concerned about the state of religious freedom on campus.

Three days later, the university’s Office of Civil Rights and Investigations issued Perlot, Miller, and Alexander no-contact orders against the student even though the CLS members did not receive notice that anyone had complained about them and were not given an opportunity to review the allegations against them or defend themselves.

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Today’s blacklisted American: Assistant principal harassed and forced to resign for rejecting school’s insistence that all whites are racists

A view slide from the school's bigoted training
A view slide from the school’s bigoted training, annotated to
illustrate the program’s goals.

“Segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!” When Emily Mais, assistant principal at Agnor-Hurt Elementary School in Virginia strongly objected to training materials being used by the Albemarle County school district that preached that only whites could be racists, and in fact all were, she found herself endlessly harassed, forced to make numerous public apologies, and eventually was forced to resign in the face of numerous insults and threats against her.

She has now enlisted the Alliance Defending Freedom to sue the Albemarle County School Board. From the first link above:
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Pushback: College that demanded professor use fake pronouns loses lawsuit, must pay him $400K

A victory for free speech
A victory for free speech

Don’t comply: When in 2018 the public college Shawnee State University in Ohio tried to force philosophy professor Nicholas Meriwether to use a student’s preferred female pronouns, even though the student was a biological male, Meriwether refused.

The school then performed “a formal investigation” which declared that Meriwether was creating “a hostile environment” for the student, simply because Meriwether refused to let that student force him to say things he disagreed with.

Shawnee State officials then placed a written warning in the professor’s file, demanding he change the way he addresses transgender students to avoid being fired or suspended without pay.

Rather than bow, Meriwether contacted the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a free speech law firm focused on protecting the first amendment rights of Americans. They sued, and have now won a big victory for freedom of speech.
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Pushback: University’s blacklisting of a student quickly ends when confronted by lawyers

Boris Badenov: The school administrators at
Southern Illinois University

Today’s blacklist story came and went so quickly that no one in the press really ever had a chance to cover it. I however want to highlight it today because it tells us a great deal about today’s bankrupt academic culture, and its paper tiger nature if challenged.

On February 10, 2022, Jamie Ball, the director for Equal Opportunity, Access and Title IX Coordination at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, sent notices to Maggie DeJong, a student in the school’s Art Therapy Counseling Program, telling DeJong that she was forthwith forbidden to interact in any way with three other students.

Because DeJong attended classes and also worked at the same facility as these three students, the orders essentially blacklisted her from school through the end of the ’22 semester.

Ball provided no facts or reasons for the “no-contact” orders, other than saying that any contact between DeJong and these three students “would not be welcome or appropriate at this time.” Ball’s order also admitted that no harassment or violation of school policy had occurred. Her order was simply “to prevent interactions that could be perceived by either party as unwelcome, retaliatory, intimidating, or harassing.”

In other words, Ball was punishing DeJong for something that might happen, likely based on secret accusations made by those three students.

On February 23rd, less than two weeks later, lawyers from the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) sent the school’s Chancellor, Randy Penbrook, a letter [pdf] outlining the illegality of this action, and demanding the no-contact orders be immediately rescinded.
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Today’s blacklisted Americans: Farm banned from farmers market because owners are Christian

Country Mills Farms-banned!
The Tennes are a normal family! We must blacklist them!

They’re coming for you next: A Michigan farmer was banned from a local farmers market by the city government of East Lansing because the owners, Steve and Bridget Tennes, are Christian and had publicly stated their opposition to homosexual marriage.

The ban against their business, Country Mill Farms, was begun in 2016. Though a court quickly ruled that it was unconstitutional, the city renewed the ban in 2018 and has maintained it since, claiming the court’s ruling only applied to the 2017 season.

The logic of the East Lansing government is actually quite blatent: It believes it has the right to dictate what others can or cannot say in public, the first amendment be damned.

[C]ity officials asserted that the Tennes’ expression conflicted with East Lansing’s marriage views and its new market policy. The policy requires vendors to agree to comply with the city’s “Human Relations Ordinance and its public policy against discrimination while at the market and as a general business practice.”

It’s illegal for anyone to “make a statement which indicates that an individual’s patronage or presence at a place of public accommodation is unwelcome or unacceptable because of sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression…” among other designated classes. [emphasis mine]

In other words, East Lansing wants to forbid any dissent to the modern and very perverse sexual movement. You will not be allowed to disagree, under any condition. And if you try, you will be blackballed, censored, and squashed, as is the right of our all-knowing government.

Stalin would be proud. So would Hitler, Mussolini, and all past despots who liked killing people who disagreed with them.
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