Surprise, surprise: Wednesday’s anti-gun school “walkout” weren’t about free speech after all.
A high school student in Minnesota was booted off campus by school administrators, after he tried to counter-protest the anti-gun rally.
A video posted to Facebook by a fellow student named Kenny MacDonald shows one of his classmates holding up a sign that reads “Guns don’t kill people. People kill people.” The video depicted the counter-protester being confronted by New Prague High School Principal Lonnie Seifert.
According to MacDonald’s Facebook post, the student was threatened with arrest if he didn’t leave campus–and he then walked peacefully away from the rally, escorted by the principal.
“This violates the first amendment and makes me sick that they can do whatever they want,” MacDonald wrote.
After millions of people viewed the video, the school district was forced to respond–claiming that the student was in violation of a policy about “distribution of non-school-sponsored material.”
“New Prague Area Schools fully respects and recognizes that students have free speech rights,” they added, in a statement. “Those rights, however, are to be balanced against the District’s responsibility to maintain a school environment focused on education. The District’s administration has an obligation to enforce the policy, which is known as a ‘time, place, and manner restriction.’”