Speak Outs
Speak Out
Should schools be allowed to ban religious symbols to protect against gang violence?

It’s not unusual for schools to ban students from wearing gang symbols. If students are unable to outwardly identify with rival groups when they are in school, it lessens the potential for school violence. But what happens when a gang symbol is a religious symbol as well?

Do your First Amendment rights stop at school? No and yes. When the Supreme Court ruled in Tinker v. Des Moines that students were permitted to wear black armbands in school to protest the Vietnam War, Supreme Court Justice Abe Fortas wrote: “It can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.” But the issue of free speech at school is more complicated than that, since school officials are responsible for maintaining an orderly environment. The Tinker justices ruled that symbolic expression can be restricted when it is disruptive or poses a clear and present danger to the school environment. The principals in these recent cases believe that speech restriction applies to rosaries when used as gang symbols.
When a Colorado Springs school district found out that gangs in the Midwest had started adopting Catholic rosary beads and crosses as symbols of their allegiance, it decided to clamp down. Over the summer, it voted to allow each school in the District 11 – elementary schools up to high school – to decide individually whether it wanted to ban children from wearing crosses and rosaries outside their clothing during school hours.

One school, Mann Middle, says students who want to wear rosaries as a symbol of their Catholic faith must do so underneath their clothing. This did not sit well with Rebekah Gostnell. The parent of a 13-year-old student named Cainan spoke up to the school district and in the local press about the restriction.

“He loves Jesus and should be able to wear (a Christian symbol) outwardly as he chooses,” Gostnell said in the Colorado Springs Gazette. “I don’t think it’s right to make some people hide their religious beliefs and allow others to show their religious beliefs.”

Jordan Sekulow, a human rights attorney at the American Center for Law, told the Gazette that unless there is evidence that a student is part of whichever gang wears religious symbols, that student has a constitutional right under the First Amendment to wear a cross to school.

A similar case in Schenectady, N.Y., drew a lawsuit after seventh grader Raymond Hosier was repeatedly suspended for wearing his rosary to school. The school district eventually lifted its ban on rosary beads.

What do you think?

Should schools be allowed to ban religious symbols to protect against gang violence? Does it equate to making students hide their religious beliefs, as Rebekah Gostnell said? Or is letting students wear their rosaries under their clothing a safe compromise? Should schools first have evidence that the student is in a gang before restricting what he or she wears? Join the discussion!

Join the Discussion
limited to 2000 characters including spaces  

Thank you for commenting.
Your comment is awaiting approval.
Click here to view all Speak Outs
I think that it should not be banned people should express who they are and it violates the first amendment!

Murrieta, CA
I think the school district deserves more flexibility when it comes to incidents like this. I think that they acted appropriately, and should be able to rule out any gang symbols from their school regardless of any religious symbol used by any gang.

When I found out religion was not allowed which was just recenly by my health teacher I was shocked. I have been talking about It openly for a while. My school has zero violence so I think there should be a condition where if the crime rate is above "x" they ban it. But if it is below "x" it should be legal to wear a necklace with a religious symbol.

Umatilla, Or
Umatilla High
In a school where we don't have as much gang related occurrences, we are still told by surten staff that we shouldn't be allowed to wear our symbols. I feel that being able to wear our religious symbols should be a must. If someone has a problem with that religion than that's their problem not the person wearing it.

Stroudsburg, PA
Mr Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I don't think schools should ban religious symbols. Religion plays a key role in a persons life and wearing symbols are an expression of they faith and allegiance to the religion. Even though religious symbols may cause gang violence, the wearer isn't forced to wear the symbol in the first place and the violence could be deterred by using strict punishments and consequences. People are very proud of their religions and taking away their expression of their faith may be oppressive and anger the students. I feel there is no need to ban religious symbols when punishing students is a reasonable way of dealing with any violence and if religious symbols were banned it would probably cause even more problems as many students would become outraged.

I think people should belive what they want and shoudent be banned for beliving in that symbols are part of the life of people.let people belive. people shouldnt be ofendet about it . I am not Christian and their symbols don't bother me I am jewish and I wear the david star and no one ever bother about it

Murrieta ca
Mr. Jabro/ Creekside
If religious symbols are banned from school then wouldn't that be violating the first amendment? Anyone should be able to express their religion, a rosary should not be a "gang sign" it's just showing the belief of catholic faith a long with any other religious symbols. Religion is not a gang so i would not see a reason to hide/ban it.

do religious symbols count as clothing also

Glenn/nya varvet
Where should the lines be crossed we dont know we have to limit but still accept religious symbols to some extent....

Glenn/nya varvet
Everybody should have the right to wear any religious symbol they want

Guildford, Surrey
St. Peter's Catolic Seondary School, Guildford Merrow
It should not be banned because there's nothing wrong with expressing your faith and being proud of what you believe in. No one can stop you for believing in it

Watertown/ Ma
Kaitlyn M
Mr. Rimas/ Watertown High school
Schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols. It violates the first amendment of freedom of religion. Students should not be worried about hiding their religious necklaces or bracelets. Their is no evidence indicting gang and the relation to religious symbols.

New Mexico
Steve Maxwell
Silver Schools
The 1st Amendment is clear. No rules or laws passed restricting religious freedom would be constitutional without striking or amending the 1st Amendment. Sorry folks we are a Constitutional Republic.

Sidney, Montana
Fredy Mata
Mr. Faulhaber
I don't believe schools should ban religious symbols, because everyone has a right to practice their religion. instead they should warn kids of the possible danger of wearing these religious symbols.

port Isabel High School
I had recived 25 days D.A.E.P for wearing a rosay in witch protects me in any way by the form of god. This shouldent be allowed!! This is not right!!

Jefferson Academy
Since religions meet the DOJ definition of a gang, and since many members of religion use that membership as a basis for violence/crime, and those crimes are subsequently hidden by common conspiracy of fellow members - what stops religious groups being defined as a gang under the law? Alternatively can I get tax-exempt status for my street gang if we claim something supernatural?

san jon
the schools should ban religious symbols to protect students frome gang vlolence

If they are so concerned about the rosaries, why don't they have a note set up to send home to the parents? If the parents have no clue their child is wearing a rosary to school then the child most likely is not wearing it for religious purposes. or a note could be sent out to all the parents saying something along the lines of: 'Recently Catholic Rosaries have been being used as gang signs, and to prevent violence, we would perfer it (though are not requiring it) if students would wear their rosaries under their clothes, if you could please talk to your childeren about this and other ways to express their faith, it would be greatly appreciated. this message is only sent out in hopes of peace and safety at school, we urge you to please take this under consideration.' without the run on sentences and bad grammar of course, but my point, inform the parents of what is going on and ASK them to cover their rosaries, not tell, a student should not be restricted in showing their religion, Christian, Jewish, Catholic, Muslim, Bhuddist, or Wiccan. there will always be bullying of a student who is different, having a symbol wont make it much worse, but maybe give the student hope.

newark,new jersey
chauntae j.
religious symbols shouldn't be banned no matter what because we all want to worship who ever we choose and we can agree with our parents wether we like it or not. i'm a christian and i always wear a cross on my neck. my friend is muslim and she wears her kimar everyday because we like who we are.

harrisburg PA
central dauphin
it shouldnt be banned no matter what

Ban all religious symbols in school. Its not part of the uniform. Religion is a belief. Keep it to yourself, I dont need to see your symbolic advertisement for the church. "I love batman and should be able to wear (cape and mask) outwardly as I choose". Why does a religious belief differ to a nonreligious one? Wear you cape/mask/cape outside of school. If Jesus doesn't love you between school hours, just ask for foregiveness...

If the religious symbol is linked with a gang then yes it should be banned. Otherwise it should be permitted.

Ms.Campbell / northstar
If the students are scared to hide it from the gangs. I would to be scared to. Because some gangs want fight the kids and even kill some kids just because the kids have ink on their skin that mite look like a gang tattoo from a distance. So the school should protect.

brownsville, texas
veterans memorial high school
In school they always tell me to put my rosary in because they say its a gang symbol, and that isn't right. They cantg just say its gang related and it has to be against the 1st admendment with freedom of religion. Down in brownsville there are no gangs that claim the rosary to be their gang symbol, and that's getting on my nerves

corona, ca
corona fundamental intermediate school
i am 15 yrs. old, I currently attend highschool but when i went to CFIS they didnt allow anyone to express their religion. anyone who did was sent to detention all day.

Sidney, MT
Mr. Faulhaber
I dont think schools should be able to ban religious symbols. It is your religion and you should be able to express it.

Sidney, MT
Mr. Faulhaber
I don't think that the school should be able to ban something expressing your religion. It's your first amendment right. If it's important to them, let them express it how they please.

Stanley/Orono Middle School
Students should be able to express their religion in school because of the 1st amendment. The first amendment states that students are people and people have free religious expression as a right. To say that religious expression in schools is utterly unconstitutional.

this is a good act but its kinda going to far with the whole not being able to do anything

Cranford community college
Religious symbols should be allowed in school. They symbolise what individual beliefs a person has. Religious clothing shows that someone is following their religion that they believe in, and that they would like to follow. Should we really deny the children of our society the right to be religious?

Jones-Prettyman/Baltimore Talent Development
I believe that schools should be able to ban religious symbols but at the same time I believe that they shouldn't because people have the right to represent their religion, but they should limit the ways they represent it and they need to work on a way to stop gangs.

Jones-Prettyman/Baltimore Talent Development
Yes. Schools should be able to ban religious symbols to protect against gang violence because it's an issue of public safety. The Government is suppossed to provide public safety under any means of circumstances, which means if it calls for limiting the First Amendment's "Freedom of Religion." If it's my safety that is endangered, I would want the Government to deal with it even if it calls for a loss of freedom. So, I think the Government should make a school policy to ban religious symbols in order to protect others against gang violence.

Jones-Prettyman/Baltimore Talent Development High School
They should not be able to tell you that you can't wear a rosary or have a tattoo of a cross and send you to the office because of a religion. If they did, then some people would have to be home schooled because they have a religion.

Religion should not be allowed at any school. Kids are constantly judged for not being in the same religion.

Port Allen, La
I think that it is particuarlly important that any student should be able to express their religion. No matter what it is its what that child feels.

Montgomery, TX
Unless a student is actually affiliated with a gang and the rosary beads is the symbol of their allegiance, then that specific student should not be able to wear the rosary outside of their clothing and must be hidden. But according to the 1st amendment, every student has a right to freedom of speech and religion, therefore the banning children from expressing their religious beliefs would violate the amendment.

sidney, MT
mr. fauhlaber
I thinks schools should not take away are rights of expressing our selfs not every religious figure represents gangs i just believe school should not get involved in peoples lifes. we wear what ever makes us happy so let us be are selfs.

Greencastle-Antrim HS
I believe that it is a violation of our First Amendment right to band rosaries or any form of religious beliefs. I understand that gang violence is an issue that is rapidly growing and needs to be dealt with accordingly, according to helpinggangyouth.com of the estimated 1 million gang members in America, 40 percent of them are under the age of 18. However, schools are taking it too far now if they believe that banning a symbol of purity is the right thing to do. If they are allowed to ban crosses, a religious symbol since the beginning of time, then it opens up the door to ban whatever they please. If the public and the courts just allows schools to continue to ban anything that they want o


Mrs. Ubrun-Southridge Middle School, Fontana, California
Students shouldn't be allowed to wear religious symbols at school. A very important reason that students shouldn't be able to wear religious signs is that, it may cause fights or riots between students of different religions. When a students of one religion sees a classmate wearing a religious symbol of a different religion, they may not like it and decide to fight them or discriminate them for their religion, igniting a war between members of the different religions. They might constantly tease one student making that student very depressed and may lead them to hurt them self or even lead to suicide. Another significant reason for banning religious symbols at school is that, it may cause students to be afraid once they see that another student is wearing a religious symbol. The reason for this is that, many students try to wear or even wear witchcraft symbols, scaring most students. I mean a school's sole purpose is to provide a safe and educational learning environment for all students, allowing students to wear any religious signs would ruin this purpose. Just one religious symbol could strike fear and worry through most of the student body, and the fear would spread rapidly. This fear would cause students to not focus on schoolwork and cease to maintain good grades. A final crucial reason for students not being able to wear religious symbols is that, some religious symbols represent violent gangs or are connected to them. Allowing religious symbols into a school that are connected to gangs is very dangerous. It could cause a full blown out gang war in a school, the exact thing that all schools don't want at all. This would make the school home to fights, taunting, gangs, and maybe even a few deaths. This wouldn't allow not one student to be able to learn or feel safe at school. Allowing religious symbols at school is a risky and foolish decision. It would result in fights, religious discrimination, and an unsafe learning environment for students, undoubtedly any and all religious symbols should be banned at school.


Southridge Middle School, CA
I think students should be able to wear religious symbols at school. The first reason is that the students have rights, not letting them wear their religious symbols is not giving them there rights. They should be able to wear whatever they want as long as it means no harm, or Nudity. Another reason students should be able to wear religious symbols is that If it doesn’t go against school conduct, why not wear it? Students should be able to wear religious symbols as long as it doesn’t go against school conduct or brake any rules. There is nothing wrong with wearing a star with a circle around it, its not breaking any rules, so why not? My last and final reason is that if students can wear crosses then why can’t students wear any other religious symbols? You see other students walking around with crosses on t-shirts and necklaces, but not any other religious symbol. Students have the right to wear any religious symbols they want as long as it doesn’t go against school policy—Who’s with me?


Southridge Middle, Fontana
All religious symbols should be able to be worn at school. My first reason is that its discrimination to the religions. The schools think that just because they worship other things its evil. They only allow the Christian cross to be worn at school. The decision of wearing the religious symbols is not up to the schools. It is not harming any students by wearing these symbols. The symbols are for expressing the students’ religions. There is no reason for the schools to ban the symbols if no harm comes to the students. Another reason is that nothing should get in the way of a students work. Nothing states that the religious symbols will get in the way of the students education. If the students are getting distracted it wouldn’t be from the symbols. Everyone came to America for religious freedom, and it is not right to take that away from people.


Southridge Middle, Fontana Ca
Students should be allowed to wear religious symbols during school. Perhaps an important reason is that they should have the right to wear any religious symbol they want. It may not be fair to them of how they treat other symbols, because schools allow the holy cross, but they don’t accept other religious symbols for example the pentacle. The pentacle is pretty much like the holy cross, but they have different meanings for the different religion. Symbols from other religions are a lot like the cross just that they look different and have a different meaning, but they both stand for their religion and belief! Another obvious reason why students should be allowed is because students are not here to please the school. All the student is doing is showing respect to their religion by wearing the symbol. They are not doing anything bad so why shouldn’t it be permitted? The school has no right to tell students what symbols to wear and what not to wear. The final reason why students should be allowed to wear symbols during school is because symbols do not harm or injure no one. The pentacle can scare other people for the fact that it is Wiccan and automatically they will think it’s a bad symbol but it is not. The pentacle doesn’t hurt anyone. It is just a symbol that people wear to show their religion and belief. In addition to other symbols, they also do not hurt anyone. They are just symbols not weapons. With no doubt, students should be allowed to wear religious symbols during school.


Southridge Middle School, Fontana, Ca
Many different people around the world argue about how they should be able to wear symbols that represent their religions. I say that people should be able to wear what they want, but should be appropriate and non offensive. Some religions or belief’s symbols might offend or intimidate people, such as “Wicca” or being a “White Supremacists”. I think people should be able to wear symbols representing their religion or belief.


fairfield school, levin
at school we have this competition were can do speeches to change the rules and i choose to do it on clutural and relgious necklaces because i think that i should be able to wear a cross or a green stone to school but no one has even spoke up to our princple or anything so i really want to get the right to wear necklaces hopefully i win:)


Nimitz High, Irving, TX
I believe that schools don't have the right to ban religious symbols to protect against gang violence. Not the fact that its protecting against gang violence, but the fact that some people must wear certain items. I support that gangs are a problem but this subject could be handle without taking items away from students that aren't in gangs. The first amendment fully protects this from happening.


Nimitz, Irving
Our nation is funded on the basis of religious freedoms, along with freedoms of speech and freedom from oppression. Not allowing students these three simple freedoms, goes against everything our country is founded upon. By not allowing student to support their religion in school by wearing crosses or rosary beads or anything of the like, ther school, even if it is unmeaningly, is saying that religion is wrong. They are singling out kids who are religious and telling them that they can be religious outside of school, but they are not allowed to show it inside of school because it could actually be something bad. Rather than single out Christian and Catholic kids, who tend to do what they are asked if they are true believers, the school should focus more on the actual gang activity. Not allowing gang members to wear a sign of their gang in school isn't gonna stop gang violence. Those kids are still gonna fight, kill, and steal all they want whenever they won't. The schools shouldn't be focusing so much on what a kid wears, but instead actually get down to the real matter of stopping gang violence. Keeping gagns from showing their sign is a school district having no strength, but trying to say their perfect. Now, actually standing up against gangs and attempting to eliminate them from a school, that takes guts. But if your school district doesn't have the guts for that, don't single out the good kids and take their rights.


Nimitz High School, Irving, Texas
If the schools are being allowed to ban religious symbols and suspend students who wear them to school then who knows what will be banned next. Sooner or later, students are going to be told that they cannot have pierced ears or any visible bracelets on. Giving the schools the right to invade into our religious lives by telling us we cannot wear crosses or rosaries is like giving Congress the right to pass a law that taxes us on wearing shoes on Sundays. It is just unreasonable and unnecessary. Students have the right to wear religious symbols, whether it be a cross or a necklace of Buddha. I can start up a gang right this second, declare my gang symbol was a golden necklace, and get all my friends to begin wearing golden necklaces. When word gets out that I had started the “Golden Necklace Gang,” then all the schools will begin banning golden necklaces. My point is, it's just ridiculous to know that a gang just decided to use a cross as one symbol of their pride and now students of harmless schools are being punished for it. Why are Muslims able to wear their Dishdasha during school hours to show faith in their religion, but Christians and Catholics are banned from wearing their crosses and rosaries? The schools might not want to admit it, but banning one religious symbol makes the schools look like they are singling out one particular religious faith. I understand that intentions are meant to protect students from gang violence, but there should be evidence that a student is affiliated with a gang before they are asked to take off their rosaries or crosses. Restricting what the student wears is just going to make the student angry and frustrated because it will seem very unfair to him/her. My school has done a great deal in order to limit gang violence. They have gone as far as to ban band-aids because some gang was using band-aids to show their status in the gang. Now doesn't this sound ridiculous? Yes, it sure does. I was even asked once to take off my band-aid on my arm because they believed it symbolized that I was in a gang. Once I removed it and showed them that indeed the band-aid was being used for the right purpose, I was able to wear it for the rest of the day. Of course, my school no longer enforces this rule because it was getting to the point where they were no longer able to control it since band-aids were commonly used everyday. The same should go with a necklace of a cross. Thousands of students at my school wear crosses to symbolize their religion, and thousands of students everyday are being asked to take the crosses off. My school is one of many that enforce such rules, and it upsets me every time I see a friend being asked to remove their cross necklace. Some teachers might not pay enough attention to what students are wearing to enforce the rule, but it is still a rule. And this rule is another rule that is made to be broken.


Kyle T
Nimitz High School, Irving Tx
I dont believe that any religious symbol should be banned from a school. According to the first amendment, we have the freedom of religion, therfore, the freedom to expresss it how they choose. If a school proves that a gang is using a religious symbol as their universal sign, then the school shouldnt ban the symbol, they should ban the stundents in the gang. And just because a student happens to wear a particular symbol that is in some way associated to a gang, it doesnt mean that they are part of the gang. The students should be allowed to express their religion through any way, just like eveyone else in school. Its not the stundents fault that the gangs happen to use a religious symbol as their sign. It would be like a gang using long hair as a symbol, then the school bans long hair. Its rediculous, and the schools just need to crack down on whos in the gang and whos not.


Monica A.
Nimitz High School, Irving, Tx
I beleive that before suspending or punishing a child for wearing a religious symbol the accusors need to know for sure if that student is involved in a gang. Students have rights just like the rest of the world and if they want to wear the symbol of their religion proudly so be it, but just because they are wearing one does not mean that they are gang members. Schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols from the children, only from the children involved in gangs. What fault do the proud religious students have if gang members want to use the same symbol? It is not right to ban a religious symbol from the students that don't deserve to be punished.


Nimitz HS, TX
Schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols at school to protect against gang violence. I feel when one group of people are involved in illegal activity, it's inappropriate to punish their entire peer group as a whole. As American citizens, we are all entitled to freedom of religion, which must allow for the expression of that religion. We may say that religion has no part in the school system, but as it stands, even our Pledge of Allegiance says that we are “one nation, under God.” I feel that unless a student is suspected of gang participation, then it is wrong to ban them from expressing their religious beliefs. I wholly agree with Gostnell when she says that it's not right to force some students to hide their religious beliefs, while allowing others to express their own. There must be some boundaries about how far schools will go to prevent gang participation. These boundaries should never encompass trampling on the rights of fellow students. What if wearing belts was an active gang symbol? Would the whole student body no longer be able to wear belts? No, because hopefully, the school would make an effort to pinpoint these gang members and address them separately.


Sidney High School, Sidney, MT
I think schools should be allowed to ban religious symbols that deal with gang violence. Schools need to be able to protect the students and if that means banning religious symbols then do so. Schools are supposed to be a place of education if there is gang violence then their is a distraction prevent kids from learning. Therefore, schools should be aloud to ban religious symbols if dealing with gang violence.


Sidney High School, Sidney, MT
I think they should be able to, i mean everyone is all about PEACE so why not stop gang violence when you can by doing anything and everything. as much as possible


Trinity HS, Washington, PA
Schools should never be allowed to ban religious symbols. By doing so, it would be unconstitutional. The first amendment gives Americans freedom of religion. Just because a gang decides to take a religious symbol and make it their own, doesn't mean those who really do use those symbols to express their faith should be limited as well. Besides that, banning a religious symbol will not stop gang violence. Gangs will just use their symbols outside of school.


Sidney High School, Sidney, MT
I think that schools should not be allowed to to ban religious symbols in their schools


Sidney High School, Sidney, MT
I think schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols.The first amendment gives Americans the right to freedom of religion. Schools doing so is going against it completly. Students have the right and should still have the right to show their religious symbols on school grounds, whether or not it promotes school gang violence.


Sidney High School, MT
I think schools shouldn't be allowed to ban the symbols to protect against gang violence. I understand that the school is trying to keep gang violence out of school by getting rid of the symbol and not descriminating against a religion. They should allow the symbol, but try to have it be not too open, because the kids in the gang might take advantage of that. I don't think it would break the First Amendment because they aren't against the religion. They are just trying to keep the peace.


Breanne B
Sidney High School, Sidney, Montana
I believe that schools should be able to ban any symbols that involve any gang voilence or religion. I believe that there is a place and time for everything. Our school is to education, and a church is to practice relign. Not at school, and to protect against gang voilence makes it even more important to insure the safety of kids and keep religion and voilence out of the school district system.


Cody k
Sidney high School, Sidney Montana
I think schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols. Because wat do religious symbols have to do with gang violence. plus the first amendment gives people the right to freedom of religion.


Sidney High School, Sidney, MT
Yes a school should be allowed to ban religious symbols if it causes that much violence. If banning students the right to wear rosaries cuts violence and gang fights, it's a good thing. Wearing them under your clothing is a good compromise, too.


SHS, Sidney/MT
I don't think they should be allowed to ban religious symbols. Not because of the first amendment, but simply because they aren't directly harming anybody. If someone wears crappy clothes to school they could get teased for it and kill themselves after living for ten years with no friends--but that doesn't mean you're not allowed to wear crappy clothes. Forget about the religious aspect--you're basically saying we can't wear trinkets. Besides, if they gangs went so far as to loophole around the system with religion, they'll prob'ly just move onto the nest loophole--maybe one gang is all silver and another is all black, or something. Any effect this ban would have on school violence will be temporary.


SHS, Sidney/MT
I don't think they should be allowed to ban religious symbols. Not because of the first amendment, but simply because they aren't directly harming anybody. If someone wears crappy clothes to school they could get teased for it and kill themselves after living for ten years with no friends--but that doesn't mean you're not allowed to wear crappy clothes. Forget about the religious aspect--you're basically saying we can't wear trinkets. Besides, if they gangs went so far as to loophole around the system with religion, they'll prob'ly just move onto the nest loophole--maybe one gang is all silver and another is all black, or something. Any effect this ban would have on school violence will be temporary.


Sidney High School, Sidney MT
I think that schools do not have the right to ban religious symbols to protect against gang violence. I think that gang violence is going to go on even if they ban these symbols. Gangs are not fighting over symbols they are fighting over issues that they believe to be much more important such as power and territory. Also, I think that if somebody is deeply religious and wants to show that, then they should be able to wear what they want and show there love of christ. This is rediculous even to think about banning such items.


Amberly M.
Northeast High School, Phila. PA
I think schools should not be allowed to ban religious symbols. It would violate students rights. Also, banning a religious symbol to protect against gang violence won't make a difference. Outside of school gang members will continue their violence. The students who want to wear the symbols to show their faith would be the only ones really being effected. Students have the right to wear whatever religious symbols they want. If schools want to protect against gang violence they should have metal detectors and educate students about the dangers of gang violence.

Related News
Related Resources
This Speak Out does not have any related resources