Sixth Circuit upheld Tennessee school Confederate flag ban

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On August 20, 2008, the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed a district court's grant of summary judgment to a Tennessee public high school in a lawsuit brought by three students who claimed the school's ban on wearing the Confederate flag violated their First Amendment rights under the US Constitution. The students had argued that they wanted to wear the flag on their clothing to express their pride in their southern heritage. The Sixth Circuit carefully limited its holding in the case, saying: "we simply hold that the school's dress code as applied to ban the Confederate flag is constitutional because of the disruptive potential of the flag in a school where racial tension is high and serious racially motivated incidents, such as physical altercations or threats of violence, have occurred."



Learn more about the First Amendment from the JURIST news archive.

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