‘Straight Pride’ Shirts Raise Protest In St. Charles
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ST CHARLES (WBBM/CBS) — Several students at St. Charles North High School are urging others to join them at a school board meeting next month to protest what they consider a too-lenient response in a t-shirt controversy.
Three students came to school this week wearing t-shirts that said “Straight Pride” on the front. On the back of the shirts was a Biblical verse from the Old Testament Book of Leviticus referencing punishment for homosexuals.
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Other students complained to administrators that the shirts were a form of bullying. The school investigated and found that there was “no physical threat to any student,” Jim Blaney, director of school and community relations for St. Charles Unit District 303.
As a result, no disciplinary action was taken.
Rather, the school intends to use the incident to teach students about free speech and social issues.
Blaney was quoted in the Daily Herald that the students “were told they have the right to express their point of view,” but should be aware of how it could be hurtful to others. The students said they did not want to offend anyone and “were merely expressing their pride in being straight,” Blaney said in the Daily Herald.
Blaney said principal Kim Zupec went to St. Charles East to clarify the matter, because some students had heard an inaccurate version of events second-hand, the Daily Herald reported.