Judge: School violated Constance’s constitutional rights, but won’t require school to hold the prom

Some news this afternoon from Mississippi:

Both sides pled their case in court Monday, with McMillen’s legal team accusing the district of violating her constitutional right to free expression. School district attorneys countered that the board was attempting to restore order to the school by withdrawing sponsorship of the event.

Davidson said the school board violated McMillen’s rights by denying her requests.

“The Court finds this expression and communication of her viewpoint is the type of speech that falls squarely within the purview of the First Amendment,” Davidson wrote in an opinion published this afternoon.

Davidson also wrote that it would not be in the public’s interest for him to intercede and require the school to host a prom. Parents of students at the Fulton, Miss., high school are organizing a private prom and school officials testified all junior and senior students would be allowed to attend.

The ACLU, which has been representing Constance, sees this as a win:

“We consider this a victory,” said ACLU Mississippi legal director Kristy Bennett.

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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