Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Student expelled for tweeting F-word(s)

Really, America, should a student be expelled for dropping the F-bomb online?
Police were called to Garrett High School Friday after students there threatened to protest. This all comes after a senior was expelled for what he tweeted on his personal Twitter account.

"One of my tweets was, fuck is one of those fucking words you can fucking put anywhere in a fucking sentence and it still fucking make sense,” said Austin Carroll, student. [Expletives restored.]

Austin was expelled from Garrett High School after tweeting the F-word under his account. The school claims it was done from a school computer. Austin says he did it from home.
Sorry, but any principal who *expels* a student for such conduct needs to be corrected, pronto. Good for the protesting students.

(Via Language Log, which praises Austin's syntactic analysis.)


  1. 1st amendment? What about if he said "Where's your fucking green card?"

  2. Those USM kids weren't expelled - kicked off pep squad & lost corresponding scholarship.

  3. Dare say that comes out differently in high school. Leaving aside fact issue as to where he tweeted.

    Discipline may be ok, but I want to know: are kids routinely expelled for cussing in Indiana? Or does the Internet just drive jackass principals crazy?

  4. It comes out differently in court if he was in school when he tweeted. Probably. In part because I am not one of a five vote majority on the US Supreme Court.

    What is a school doing monitoring student's tweets?

    I could make a strong case that tweeting and verbally cussing at school are fundamentally different, the later much less about keeping order. One oddity: Most schools of which I am aware block internet access to social media rather than monitor and attempt to control what might be said (I'll acknowledge that smart phones make those blocks ineffective). Another oddity: The time stamp should answer this definitively about whether he was in school.

    My hope is that the school gets sued and ends up discovering that, win, lose, or draw, spending money on this kind of discipline is a fools errand and they need to cut it out.

    There's a chance this may make some bad law, particularly if Obama never gets another nomination. But then it might make some good law...

    The last three days of Supreme Court arguments should remind any right thinking person why we need to have a Democrat in the White House. Although if I was Obama, I might be thinking, "next time I have a case this big, I may sit in on the moot court arguments for the Solicitor General."

  5. I wrote "later" when I meant "former' in that third paragraph. Where's your edit button, Anderson?

    And to be clear: I'm assuming everyone understands when I said "spending money on" I meant "legal fees."

  6. Scalia could choke on his own self-esteem. I was thinking what a battle royale it would be if one of the 5 reactionaries fell dead while the case was pending - what would the GOP not do to block a replacement?

    And speaking of litigative waste, I thought you would have some remark on Zach Johnson and his 16-oz. opaque plastic mug.