High school principal blocks ‘respect women’ posters, allows ‘black power’ signs

Alex Myers Contributor
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In honor of “Women’s History Month,” Grosse Point North High School student Grant Strobl wanted to place posters throughout the school teaching students to respect women, but was met with defiance from the school principal, calling his actions “vitriolic.”

Strobl, the chair of the Young Americans for Freedom chapter at his school, recalled his events on the Young America’s for Foundation’s (YAF) website.

The posters he created featured women like Sarah Palin — who faced claims from liberal blogs that her mentally-challenged baby was not actually hers and another with this statement: “The annual worldwide number of so-called ‘honor-killing’ victims may be as high as 5,000 women.” See the posters below.

Per school regulations, Strobl brought the posters to the principal, Tim Bearden, to have him sign off on them, but the principal refused.

According to Strobl’s account, Bearden looked at a single poster and then declared his whole idea “vitriolic and inappropriate” and refused to approve them.

It may seem hypocritical, however, because a bulletin board expressing “Black Power” and Human Rights “Equal” stickers were allowed in the halls, but not his “Respecting All Women” posters.

Strobl told The Daily Caller that he doesn’t want to hurt the principal’s character because Bearden has been very supportive of YAF in the past, but “I want to make sure that the policy regarding posters is equal for all groups on campus.”

Staff members were able to put up “politically-related statements” without direct permission, however, he said, “When I want to display posters countering them or promoting a conservative view point I am faced with roadblocks.”

“I believe that we should all have the same opportunity to bring awareness to ideas,” he continued.

The Young America’s Foundation program officer, Ron Meyer, told TheDC that banning Strobl’s posters is “absurd,” especially after allowing similar politically-driven displays in the past.

“YAF is trying to promote equal respect, not spread ‘vitriolic’ and ‘inappropriate’ messages,” he said, “The only thing inappropriate is this school’s censorship of Grant’s creativity.”

Bearden responded to TheDC via email and confirmed Strobl’s claim that he has been supportive of YAF in the past. In one incident he cited, the school allowed the club to operate without the staff sponsor typically required of clubs.

“We have been extremely supportive of this group,” he said, “And applaud their passion and interest in important national and world issues.”

He said that the reason for his disapproval was that the posters were political in nature and the language they quoted was not appropriate for school hallways. He did not, however, deny calling the posters vitriolic.

In response, Meyer said, “That’s silly. The posters do not advocate for any policy or political campaign. They simply advocate for equal respect by quoting people and facts.”

Meyer also said that the principal was not explicit with his reasoning when Strobl asked for his approval, not mentioning the foul language or politics behind it.

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Alex Myers