Kid Sues to Wear Shirts that Say “Diversity” and “Love”

It’s fine for the school to have a dress code. It just needs to be clear, fair, and consistent.

Matthew Schoenecker likes guns and T-shirts showing guns. But when the freshman wears the latter to Markesan High School, he is told to change, cover them, or spend the day in an isolated cubicle.

So he’s exercising some other rights to defend what he calls his First Amendment right to support the Second Amendment — he sued the principal in federal court.

The suit, filed Monday in Milwaukee, names principal John Koopman as the sole defendant. It claims Koopman violated Schoenecker’s freedom of expression by restricting him from wearing shirts that depict guns and other weapons in “a non-violent, non-threatening manner.”

The suit also contends that Koopman’s personal, case-by-case determination of which shirts are “inappropriate” violates Schoenecker’s rights to due process.

Two particular shirts crossed the line for Koopman. One reads “Celebrate Diversity,” and depicts a variety of firearms.  Another says LOVE, but the letters are formed by a handgun, a grenade, two knives and an assault-style rifle.