School Ordered To Shell Out $25K, Give Formal Apology to Pro-Trump Student Wrongfully Suspended


The left used to claim to stand for free speech and diversity of opinions — yes, even controversial ones.

Nowadays, it looks like they’ve done a complete 180 on those principles. Falling short of being truly “liberal,” the left seems to be drawn toward repression, and all too often tries to silence and punish anybody who has a view they don’t like.

Case in point: A school student in Oregon was suspended earlier this year at ironically-named Liberty High School. His offense? He wore a T-shirt with a quote from Donald Trump to a politics class.

“The wall just got 10 feet taller,” declared the tongue-in-cheek shirt, which also featured a satirical “Donald J. Trump Border Wall Construction Co.” logo.

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According to Fox News Insider, 18-year-old Addison Barnes wore the shirt on a day when immigration issues were going to be discussed in his “People and Politics” class. When school officials ordered Barnes to remove or cover up the shirt, he refused.

There was nothing blatantly offensive about the shirt. There were no swear words, no adult themes, no crass imagery. It humorously depicted a conservative policy championed by the current president: A strong border.

Standing up for free speech, Barnes sued the school — and it looks like he won.

First, a judge sided with the student and barred the school from prohibiting the senior from wearing the political shirt.

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“U.S. District Judge Michael W. Mosman found there was little justification in the court record for the Hillsboro School District to justify its censorship,” The Oregonian reported.

Now, the school has been dealt another blow, and it will make a serious impact on their pocketbook.

“On Tuesday, Barnes’ lawyers announced they had reached a settlement with the district,” explained Fox.

“[Principal Greg Timmons] will write a letter of apology to Barnes, and the district will pay $25,000 to Barnes to cover his legal fees,” the news outlet continued.

The senior student pointed to the oppression of right-leaning viewpoints behind his decision to sue, saying that it was necessary.

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“I brought this case to stand up for myself and other students who might be afraid to express their right-of-center views,” Barnes said, according to The Oregonian.

“Everyone knows that if a student wears an anti-Trump shirt to school, the teachers won’t think twice about it,” he pointed out. “But when I wore a pro-Trump shirt, I got suspended. That’s not right.”

He’s right: The Oregonian even reported that the school that Barnes attended had been the site of recent “walkouts” by students who were protesting President Trump’s policies.

In other words, the principal had no problem allowing students to literally skip class to voice their political views, but wearing a conservative T-shirt was grounds for suspension.

That’s an expensive lesson for the school district and one that could have been avoided by simply respecting that students have a right to opinions that don’t perfectly match a left-leaning ideology.

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Benjamin Arie is an independent journalist and writer. He has personally covered everything ranging from local crime to the U.S. president as a reporter in Michigan before focusing on national politics. Ben frequently travels to Latin America and has spent years living in Mexico.