Alabama School Under Scrutiny After Official Tells A Student To Remove A Gay Rights Sweatshirt

The Southern Poverty Law Center has warned an Alabama school district against infringing on a student’s freedom of speech. Elizabeth Garrett, an openly gay sophomore at Brookwood High School, said a school administrator told her to take off her sweatshirt that read, “Warning, This Individual Infected With ‘The Gay,’ Proceed With Caution,” because the official said it was disruptive. At a different point, the same official instructed Elizabeth that same-sex couples would not be allowed at the school’s prom. The Southern Poverty Law Center is threatening to file a federal lawsuit against the district if officials did not stop censoring speech supporting gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals and to do away with its ban on same-sex couples at prom by February 1. “No student should be singled out for unfair treatment or be denied their basic rights at school,” said Same Wolfe, an SPLC attorney.