Thursday, October 22, 2009

Pro-Life Student Forced into Isolation on Day of Silent Witness by School Principal

WIARTON, Ontario, October 21, 2009 ( - 16-year-old high school student Jennifer Rankin fully intended to unite her voicelessness with that of the unborn as part of the annual Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity when she arrived at school yesterday, reports Bill Henry of Sun Media.

She was impeded, however, by her school principal, who stated that the right to free speech does not apply on school property and who forced Rankin to remain in isolation for the entire day as long as she participated in the event.

During the annual Day of Silent Solidarity international campaign, which is organized by Stand True Ministries, students don red bands on their arms and red duct tape on their mouths, remaining silent while passing out fliers about the atrocity of abortion.

Rankin, 16, arrived at Peninsula Shores District School in Wiarton, Ontario yesterday morning, with the red tape over her mouth and with the simple word 'life' written upon it. She and her mother were stopped at the door, however, by school principal Patricia Cavan, while police cruisers stood nearby. Cavan initially told Rankin that she could not enter school property, but then consented to allowing her in the building, separated from other students.

"I was taken directly into a small room that was opposite the vice-principal's office and I was in there all day," Rankin told Sun Media. "I wasn't allowed to speak with or see any other students and students were not allowed to come and see me and I was isolated in that room for the entire day."

Police cruisers? Isolation.

Wow, pretty heavy handed.

I hope this case goes to court. I hope this makes it to the Supreme Court of Canada. I want to know what our legal system has to say about this.

She said that school policy prohibits the dissemination of one-sided information on religious, political, or other issues that are controversial.

Given that she was silent, it's pretty hard to pass out information. The pamphlet she had may have had information, but her witness was generally not of an educational nature.

You do get to have and express opinions in a public school setting. When I consider what public schools will allow, this seems a little hypocritical.