Middle Schooler Faces Suspension for Defying Dress Code with Controversial 'Only Two Genders' Shirt

Kid Suspended
Pexels/RODNAE Productions

A student was wearing a shirt that said that “there are only two genders.” Liam Morrison, a 12-year-old seventh-grader at Nichols Middle School in Middleborough, Massachusetts, claims he was expelled for refusing to change his T-shirt. Morrison claims he was removed from gym class on March 21 and met with school staff who told him that people had complained about his shirt, saying it made them feel "unsafe."

The well-known Twitter account LibsofTikTok reposted Morrison's remarks, which he made on April 13 during a Middleborough School Committee meeting. They reportedly assured the student that he wouldn't need to remove his shirt before returning to class, but the kid said, "Yes, words on a shirt made people feel unsafe. They told me I wasn't in trouble, but it sure felt like I was." Staff at the school reached out to Morrison's father after he politely declined.

Liam Morrison Stands Up for His Beliefs

According to the article in Spiel Times, Morrison expressed his disagreement with the school's decision, questioning, "Who is this protected class?" and "Are their feelings more important than my rights?" He also emphasized that he did not object when he saw Pride flags and diversity posters displayed throughout the school because he believed others also have a right to their beliefs.

No one personally complained about the young student's outfit, and he told the committee that he didn't see any people acting overtly disturbed about it. Morrison said that the First Amendment of the United States Constitution had permitted him to wear his shirt, wherein it guaranteed that he could have the freedom to express his beliefs.

The Massachusetts Family Institute (MFI), a non-profit group devoted to supporting families and upholding Judeo-Christian values, has expressed its support for Morrison despite the Middleborough School Council's lack of response. The ongoing discussion around inclusivity and freedom of expression in schools was brought to light by MFI's announcement that it will offer legal assistance to middle school students.

Also Read: Freedom From Religion Foundation Threatens Legal Action Over Proposed Ten Commandments Legislation

Balancing Freedom of Expression and Inclusivity in Schools: Lessons from the Morrison Case

The incident has spurred discussion on gender-sensitive subjects in educational settings, freedom of expression, and school dress codes. The story shared in Fox News stated that Morrison's experience highlights the ongoing debate about freedom of expression and the need to balance that with creating a safe and inclusive environment for all students. While he believes his shirt expresses a fact he believes in, others might argue that it could be seen as offensive or exclusionary to those outside the binary gender framework.

As it requires open communication, respect, and understanding between all school community members, achieving this balance can be difficult for schools. Encouraging discussion and dialogue to transit these complicated topics is essential, ensuring that students can voice their viewpoints without shaming or marginalizing others.

According to MSN, the case of Morrison will serve as an example and also a reminder of how crucial it is for schools to develop guidelines that uphold students' rights to express their opinions while promoting a welcoming environment for all. A suggestion comes to mind that schools can have solutions regarding these issues and foster a more respectful and safe learning environment by having to promote open communication and understanding.

Related Article:Christian School Seeks Supreme Court Review for Landmark Religious Liberty Case Aims to Protect Freedom of Faith in Education