Even high school girls have the right to freedom of speech, no matter how lewd their message might be.
A federal judge sided with the ACLU in a recent case, stating that it was wrong for a high school principal to punish two girls for posting "racy" pictures on Facebook, according to Gawker. Apparently the school official suspended the girls from all extracurricular activities for a year after someone informed him of the photos.
The photos of the girls, 16 and 15, were lewd to say the least, but that doesn't mean they were illegal.
The descrption of the photos, from the official court papers (WARNING: The description from the official documents may be a bit unsettling to some, though the pictures themselves did not cross the line into "graphic in nature"):
Prior to the first sleepover, the girls bought phallic-shaped rainbow colored lollipops. During the first sleepover, the girls took a number of photographs of themselves sucking on the lollipops. In one, three girls are pictured and M.K. added the caption "Wanna suck on my c**k." In another photograph, a fully-clothed M.K. is sucking on one lollipop while another lollipop is positioned between her legs and a fully-clothed T.V. is pretending to suck on it.
During another sleepover, T.V. took a picture of M.K. and another girl pretending to kiss each other. At a final slumber party, more pictures were taken with M.K. wearing lingerie and the other girls in pajamas. One of these pictures shows M.K. standing talking on the phone while another girl holds one of her legs up in the air, with T.V. holding a toy trident as if protruding from her crotch and pointing between M.K.'s legs. In another, T.V. is shown bent over with M.K. poking the trident between her buttocks. A third picture shows T.V. positioned behind another kneeling girl as if engaging in anal sex. In another picture, M.K. poses with money stuck into her lingerie -- stripper-style.
Whether or not the photos were in bad taste is a matter of opinion, but ultimately the judge ruled in favor of the girls, stating that their punishment violated their First Amendment rights. Because the photos were taken and distributed outside of the school the principal was out of line in handing down a punishment.
While the principal may have been acting with the best intention, the judge states that the photos also did not interfere with the school, and were thus harmless to the educational institution.Crass? Yes. Illegal? No.