Lots of people, apparently:
Starr, 13, wore the bright pink hoodie-style sweatshirt to school in Balcarres, Sask., 90 kilometres northeast of Regina in early January. School officials told her to change the shirt and not wear it again. But, after some meetings with Starr and leaders of her reserve, officials relented.
CBC News tracked down the woman who was responsible for numerous comments critical of Starr that were posted to the girl’s Facebook page.
She is Michele Tittler, 59, of Vancouver, the co-founder of a non-profit political organization called End Race-Based Laws.
“I was immensely offended,” Tittler told CBC Thursday, regarding the message of the shirt. “And I was going to do everything within my power to have that shirt banned from that school.”
Tittler said she had written to the Balcarres school and also sent notes to Facebook, complaining about the content on Starr’s page.
She is also planning to lodge a formal complaint with the Canadian Human Rights Commission , although it’s not clear on what grounds. Tittler is, however, convinced that the message of the shirt is racist.
It’s nice to know right-wingers can get as butthurt about “offensive speech” as left-wingers. As for the school administrators, I think we’re all agreed that students don’t have an absolute right to wear what they want at school (personally, as I grow older and more curmudgeonly I’m more open to the idea of school uniforms, but that’s another post). But like the “Life is wasted without Jesus” shirt that created a free-speech firestorm here in Nova Scotia, I don’t think this hoodie comes anywhere close to crossing the line. (The guy who created the shirt, not surprisingly, is cleaning up.)
In other freedom-of-expression news, a Halifax sexual resource centre is responding to an anti-abortion ad campaign by… launching its own campaign. What a concept!