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To wear is human

April 30, 2006

EARLIER THIS MONTH, a federal appeals court upheld a Poway, Calif., high school's ban on a student's anti-gay T-shirt. Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote that its message -- "Homosexuality Is Shameful" -- was "injurious to gay and lesbian students" and potentially disruptive. "If a school permitted its students to wear shirts reading 'Negroes: Go Back to Africa,' no one would doubt that the message would be harmful to young black students," Reinhardt wrote. Judge Alex Kozinski dissented, saying that schools can only restrict speech that "materially disrupts classwork or involves substantial disorder or invasion of the rights of others." Which of these T-shirts -- most available on the Internet and two of them cited by Kozinski as hypothetical examples of offensive T-shirts -- would you ban on a high school campus? Vote online at www.latimes.com/tshirts.

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