Issue 104, Spring 2007

What Are they Thinking? Student Activists Speak Out

Should a principal have the right to “prior review” a student newspaper?

If a school’s administration is allowed to review their student newspaper’s content before it is published, I believe it compromises the student’s free speech rights. By not allowing students to express their personal opinions uncensored, a school newspaper becomes nothing more then propaganda.
— Andy Musser

Should student artwork be displayed if it could be considered “offensive”?

If it takes an image of violence to get others to see how horrible it is then that should be displayed. If we did not see the worst images of wars we would be more willing to go into them and to commit those same acts in our lives. It is the nightmare images of war, death and famine that make those decisions less desirable.
— Joe Holliday

Does abstinence-only sex education work?

Abstinence-only sex education is not only a form of censorship, it is bad public policy. Rather than teaching young people the information that they need to become healthy and functional adults, many abstinence-only until marriage programs provide inaccurate or incomplete information. For over a decade, we have been doing a disservice to our young people by not providing them with all the tools they need to make responsible decisions. In a world where sexually transmitted infections are so common, this is not only censorship it is criminal.
— Kehinde Togun

What do you think about the current Supreme Court case Morse v. Frederick?

Between “bong hits 4 jesus” and the “vagina incident,” students are testing their free speech and utilizing their freedom to the fullest extent. It is important for students to understand their rights in order to have a stance and make a statement.
— Megan Reback

Should social networking sites be banned in school?

I do not believe,, or any other social networking site is fundamentally harmful. Banning such sites would not solve any of the related issues and would only push students to find other outlets for the same type of self expression. If schools prohibit these websites on campus, there are numerous other websites that aren’t considered “social networking sites” that students can use to display pictures and other personal information.
— Andy Musser

I think a major issue for teens is that sometimes we need to be trusted. You can allow us to use Facebook, or to listen to music because you taught us well. I think that some adults feel that one song or one movie can change a person, but what they forget is that we have seventeen or eighteen years of life experiences that hold a lot more weight than a single song.
— Emily Duhovny