Kid sues over right to wear shirt.
June 26, 2001 6:49 PM   Subscribe

Kid sues over right to wear shirt. No... nothing interesting like 'Straight Pride' or 'Kip Kingle, Student of the Year'. No, this time a 19 year old fights for his right to wear a "You Might Be a Red Neck Sports Fan If..." shirt. Wish they let him. It's easier to avoid idiots when they are clearly labelled.
posted by jcterminal (15 comments total)

You've got it backwards.

He wouldn't have to "fight" if he were not harassed by some PC idiot.

THIS is an issue?

I guess PC wimps are finally running out of stuff to be offended by.

Woo hoo!

Oh, I'm sorry, did that redneck expression offend someone?

Tough, grow some skin already.
posted by BarneyFifesBullet at 6:57 PM on June 26, 2001

Dude, Barney. You need to chill out over here dude.
posted by crasspastor at 7:03 PM on June 26, 2001

I guess my "Nuke a gay baby whale for Jesus" t-shirt wouldn't fly too well...
posted by RylandDotNet at 7:14 PM on June 26, 2001

Taylor said something in an old thread that I've never forgot. It's better that unpopular, distasteful, or just plain stupid examples are the ones used when fighting for free expression.
posted by mathowie at 8:05 PM on June 26, 2001

When I was a child this issue was resolved the old fashioned way. If a kid came to school wearing a T-shirt that insulted rednecks, the big bully redneck kids would gang up on him after school or during recess.

And I used to sell popcorn to the crowd of kids that'd come and watch... Ah, those were the days.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:32 PM on June 26, 2001

Ryland-- You must tell me where you prchased that shirt!
posted by brittney at 9:37 PM on June 26, 2001

an interesting point here is that the kid is 19 - over the age limit in this country when we stop treating humans as property and start (ostensibly) recognizing civil rights. To me, it seems pretty cut and dried - an adult (legally, anyway) wears a non-pornographic, non-obscene, non-DMCA-violating t-shirt, some administrator freaks out because it's just not PC enough, and infringes on his first amendment rights to freedom of expression. it would raise more interesting questions if the kid were a minor.
posted by Vetinari at 5:58 AM on June 27, 2001

Personally, i think the school was just confused and thought that "Redneck" was "Cracker"
posted by tj at 6:07 AM on June 27, 2001

From the Center for Individual Rights (the group representing Thomas Sypniewski) Web Site

The actual text of the t-shirt:

Top 10 Reasons you might be a Redneck Sports Fan if . . .

10. You’ve ever been shirtless at a freezing football game.

9. Your carpet used to be part of a football field.

8. Your basketball hoop used to be a fishing net.

7. There’s a roll of duct tape in your golf bag.

6. You know the Hooter’s menu by heart.

5. Your mama is banned from the front row at wrestling matches.

4. Your bowling team has it’s own fight song.

3. You think the “Bud Bowl” is real.

2. You wear a baseball cap to bed.

1. You’ve ever told your bookie “I was just kidding”.

Not real funny, but not real offensive either. In fact, what could they have had a problem with? (Other than the fact it is more boring Jeff Foxworthy redneck schtick).

CIR has a interesting page full of info.

P.S.: Links courtesy OpinionJournal.
posted by internal at 6:53 AM on June 27, 2001

If you sue to wear a "You might be a redneck" t-shirt to school, you might be a redneck.
posted by TacoConsumer at 8:28 AM on June 27, 2001

Good call Taco.
posted by a3matrix at 8:43 AM on June 27, 2001

You are correct.
Quote from a CIR webpage about the case:
Tom, who considers himself a redneck, had worn the shirt to school dozens of times before without complaint.
posted by internal at 9:00 AM on June 27, 2001

School officials described the shirt as "racist"? "Redneck" is an actual race, now?
posted by Oriole Adams at 9:41 AM on June 27, 2001

Oriole, let's be tactful here: they prefer to be called Budweiser-Americans.

Hm... or maybe NASCAR- Americans?
posted by hincandenza at 10:58 AM on June 27, 2001

Jeff Foxworthy should make a public statement about this, and vow to meet Tom Sypniewski and help him in his court battle. I mean heck, Foxworthy could use the publicity.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:00 PM on June 27, 2001

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