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 Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.

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mrs. gray
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PostSubject: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Wed Sep 22, 2010 6:09 pm

Share your thoughts on this article. Do you agree with the girl or the school? Why?

Clayton, N.C. — A soft-spoken 14-year-old’s nose piercing has landed her a suspension from school and put her into the middle of a fight over her First Amendment right to exercise her religion. Ariana Iacono has been suspended from Clayton High School since last week because her nose ring violates the Johnston County school system’s dress code. “I think it’s kind of stupid for them to kick me out of school for a nose piercing,” she said. “It’s in the First Amendment for me to have freedom of religion.” Iacono and her mother, Nikki, belong to the Church of Body Modification, a small group that's little known but has clergy, a statement of beliefs and a formal process for accepting new members. The state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union has contacted school officials with concerns that the rights of the Iaconos are being violated by the suspension.The Iaconos claim that the school system is ignoring its own dress code policy, which allows exemptions on religious grounds. The effect, Nikki Iacono, 32, said, is that Johnston County school officials are setting themselves up as judges of what constitutes a “real” religion.“We pretty much flat-out asked them, 'What guidelines are you following? What do you need to establish a sincere religious belief?'” she said. “We were told that if we were Hindu or she were Muslim, it would be different.” On Tuesday, after her first suspension ended, Ariana went back to school with her mother – and her nose ring. She was suspended again, this time for five days. If she comes back to school on Sept. 21 with the nose stud, she’ll face a 10-day suspension or referral to “alternative schooling,” Nikki Iacono said. A Johnston County schools spokeswoman declined to comment on the situation, saying it’s against the law to publicly discuss a particular student’s disciplinary matters. Richard Ivey, the Iaconos’ Raleigh-based minister in the church, said he believes it’s a case of officials dismissing something unfamiliar. “They’re basically saying, because they don’t agree and because they choose not to respect our beliefs, that it can’t be a sincerely held religious belief,” he said.Ivey described the church as a non-theistic faith that draws people who see tattoos, piercings and other physical alterations as ways of experiencing the divine. “We don’t worship the god of body modification or anything like that,” he said. “Our spirituality comes from what we choose to do ourselves. Through body modification, we can change how we feel about ourselves and how we feel about the world.” The church claims roughly 3,500 members nationwide and was founded about two years ago, adopting the name of a similar group that had been dormant for several years. Sally Gordon, a University of Pennsylvania professor who focuses on constitutional law and religious issues, said schools have the right to issue rules on dress as long as there’s a good reason for it and it does not target a specific religion. But she said the school district could/ may run into a problem with its religious exemption. The Johnston County schools dress code policy prohibits several types of facial jewelry but does allow officials to make accommodations for sincerely held religious beliefs. “One of the remarkable things about religious freedom is that people have all kinds of beliefs that look to others as bizarre but make internal sense to them,” Gordon said. “We really can only claim to be a country that respects religious liberty if we respect the variety of beliefs that exist in the country – both new and old.”The Iaconos contacted the North Carolina ACLU chapter for help, and legal director Katy Parker said the school is on shaky ground. “We do think she has a right to wear her nose ring,” Parker said. Students’ free expression rights are limited at schools, but Parker said she believes a legal category known as a “hybrid right” overrules those curbs. Essentially, the Iaconos are arguing that Ariana’s right to free expression and Nikki’s right to raise her daughter as she wishes are being abridged. In 1999, a federal court in North Carolina ruled that the Halifax County school system had violated such hybrid rights of Catherine Hicks and her great-grandson by forcing the boy to wear a school uniform.Hicks’ religious beliefs held that uniformity is linked to the anti-Christ, a belief Halifax schools rejected. The court ruled in her favor, though, and ordered the school system to include a religious exemption in its dress code policy. A similar situation to the Iaconos’ went to the courts in 2002, when a woman was fired from her job at a Costco store over her eyebrow ring. The woman was also a member of the Church of Body Modification, but the courts eventually ruled that her religious beliefs did not require her to always wear her jewelry.The ACLU, like the Iaconos and their minister, hope their issue can be resolved without going to court. In the meantime, Nikki and Ariana pick up schoolwork for her to do at home while her peers sit in class. “I hope they’re going to stop suspending me and clear some of these absences from my record,” Ariana said. “I want to get into a good college.”


Last edited by mrs. gray on Thu Sep 23, 2010 11:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Charlie Smith

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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Wed Sep 22, 2010 6:56 pm

She legally has the right o wear the nose ring but, #1- that is a pretty dumb law- no nose rings,#2 that is a really obscene "religion"
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Thu Sep 23, 2010 7:34 am

I can understand the reason for the rule against lots of facial piercing, cuz some people do go overboard with it, but i think that it should be allright for the girl to wear her nose ring. I mean, it is a nose ring..which usually aren't to big and conspicuous, like eyebrow and lip piercings. It sounds like a odd religion she is part of.

ali_n.
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:54 am

I think that she should not wear her nose ring at school because that is going against the school dress code.
She should wear it when she's not at school.
if she has a problem with what they are telling her, she should change schools.


Wink
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PostSubject: Nose ring   Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:26 am

First of all, she shouldn't even be wearing the nose ring at all, since we are to be temples of the living God. However, she isn't a Christian. Her religion should also be subject to the authority of the school. Also, is it that hard to just take the ring off during school? Lastly, the first amendment refers to denominations NOT religions as commonly held today. The founders of America wanted to separate themselves from the denomination of England NOT Christianity. In ALL prior versions of the 1st amendment, they wrote denominations instead of religion. Therefore, she definitely should NOT wear the ring at school. Exclamation Suspect
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Christian Di Lorenzo
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PostSubject: Changing schools   Thu Sep 23, 2010 10:27 am

meredith wrote:

if she has a problem with what they are telling her, she should change schools.


Wink

I don't know that public schoolers can change schools anyways.
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Thu Sep 23, 2010 7:51 pm

Christian Di Lorenzo wrote:
meredith wrote:

if she has a problem with what they are telling her, she should change schools.


Wink

I don't know that public schoolers can change schools anyways.
You can but it's kind of hard. Cool
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Thu Sep 23, 2010 9:05 pm

Well, I think that the nose ring law is going a little far, but if the school says no, just take it out for school. She could wear it any other time. But the nose ring law is going a little far. Nobody sees it really. But I would understand forbidding a tongue piercing though.
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PostSubject: Why is a toungue piercing less acceptable than a nose?   Thu Sep 23, 2010 11:52 pm

Katie you say:
Quote :
But I would understand forbidding a tongue piercing though.

This particular girl claims to be the follower of a religion that advocates body modification. What if another student who attends this same "Church" decides he/ she wants to truly exercise his "faith"
He puts large spikes through his eyebrows, tatoos his forehead with 50 different images, then puts safety pins in his eyebrows. He is doing this as part of his religion. Doesn't he have the right to exercise his religion? Isn't the free exercise of religion guaranteed by our constitution?
Doesn't he have the right to self expression?
What makes a religion legitimate? Do we open up a huge can of worms if we start allowing people to claim it is their religion that requires them to "behave" or "Not behave" a certain way? What are the factors we currently use to determine if a religion is "legitimate?" Is it possible to start a new religion by simply gathering a group of people, writing down your beliefs, assigning leadership and applying for tax exempt status?
The article asks the questions:
Quote :
'What guidelines are you following? What do you need to establish a sincere religious belief?'” she said. “We were told that if we were Hindu or she were Muslim, it would be different.”


(smile)

Remember we are learning to debate and there are always two sides to every debate. As I said in class, you may favor one side of a debate but you need to know what the other side is going to argue or you will be unable to defend the TRUTH!

Definitions matter in a debate!

I was sitting at a table with a girl today who asked me... "Which do you think would be better for me to do?" She was a debater so I asked her to define the term, "Better" She clarified and I was quickly able to determine that for her "better" meant: Easier and more apt to succeed.

I was able to answer appropriately because she defined her terms.
Better doesn't always equal easier... Can I have an Amen?
With this said: How do we define religion?
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:08 am

1. The "Church of Body Modification" is NOT a religion that requires you to pierce your body, "We honor all forms of body modification and those who choose to practice body modification for any reason. " ---- That came directly from the webpage. They Do Not Encourage body modification, they simply respect you regardless of whether or not you've modified your body.

2. In the Bible there is one reference in the Old Testament that says not to "Cut or tatoo your body" (Lev. 19:28 NIV). However, there is no reference to that in the New Testament, but in 1 Cor it says: "Whatever you do, do it for the glory of God." You would have to ask the girl directly, "Why did you get your nose pierced?" and see what she says.

3. Ok, so she claims that the nose piercing represents her religion. If she repects our God (Jesus Christ) she would read the Bible, right? In Romans 13 it says: "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except for that which God has established." In this case that means the School Officials. She is going against the dress code which they have laid. Which means, in reality, she is going against God Himself.

I have listed 3 Major reasons why she is wrong. She will not return to that school until she decides to obey their rules. As a US Soccer Referee I know that you cannot wear earings or any piercings while playing. This is for you're safety, and I will not allow you to play unless you take them off. I don't know the reason WHY the school has that rule, but they do.

However, I do have one point I'd like to make in favor of the girl:

1. The First Amendment States: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. " -------- Congress will make no law prohibiting the free exercise of your religion.

I'm not exactly sure what her "religion" is, but if she can present a legitimate religion, then the school is wrong...
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:19 am

Hmmmmm.... It also seems as if they pierce they're body and say it's a "religion" to justify for it.

This one is definatly a puzzler..... No

I am still standing firm on my statement: "repect the governing authorities that God has established"
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PostSubject: Great points, however....   Fri Sep 24, 2010 1:39 pm

Alex, You make some great points and great job on doing some research. One point I need to counter with...

You say:
Quote :
If she repects our God (Jesus Christ) she would read the Bible, right? In Romans 13 it says: "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except for that which God has established."

Couldn't we just as easily have a student who isn't a Christian, Perhaps her religion is *WASOOSIE*, and they believe that authority is legitimate when it echos individual preferences, likes and dislikes. If Authority goes against these individual preferences, likes and dislikes then it is not legitimate authority. They refer to their spiritual book "The Blanket" and quote their spiritual leader as saying, "You must obey and listen to your heart and what your personal spirit tells you to do. You must reject and overthrow authority that prevents you from seeking personal self actualization."

My question therefore is, "If a person is not a Christian, are they bound to live with respect for Christian scriptures?


Yes I made up the religion of WASOOSIE. This religion doesn't exist or does it exist by another name?
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Fri Sep 24, 2010 2:25 pm

Okay, but my main reason for saying that is all of her reasons for wearing the ring can be "blocked" by my different points. No matter where she comes from.

Also, how do we know that she didn't make up the religion? Like I said, they (the body modifyers) could have made a religion to justify them wearing the piercings and tattoos. The best way to know is to ask her WHY
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Fri Sep 24, 2010 6:08 pm

OK, I am taking the affirmative side now:

She is affirming her right to the first amendment to exercise her religion.
Okay, it is just a nose ring. And who does she hang around with? people who may have been peirced.
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Christian Di Lorenzo
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PostSubject: 1st amendment   Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:02 pm

Katie Eaton wrote:
She is affirming her right to the first amendment to exercise her religion.

I gave an explanation why this isn't true. It is a misunderstanding of the first amendment. Here is the quote.

Christian Di Lorenzo wrote:
Lastly, the first amendment refers to denominations NOT religions as commonly held today. The founders of America wanted to separate themselves from the denomination of England NOT Christianity. In ALL prior versions of the 1st amendment, they wrote denominations instead of religion. Therefore, she definitely should NOT wear the ring at school. Exclamation Suspect
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PostSubject: Great point however....   Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:43 pm

Quote :
In ALL prior versions of the 1st amendment, they wrote denominations instead of religion. Therefore, she definitely should NOT wear the ring at school.

Christian, You have made a great point however I have to say that we are bound by the wording in the current Bill of Rights, not previous versions.

Quote :
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Your point is still important because it shows the power of words and their definitions. It also illustrates how our former political leaders conceded and/or chose to change the wording in the original political document. (You can bet there was debate over the change of these words.)

It's an interesting study to see how many amendments have been made. All of these revisions have been key battles over wording and intent. How we define words has great consequences.

Words have power!


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Christian Di Lorenzo
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PostSubject: 1st Amendment   Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:01 pm

Prior versions of the 1st amendment also have relevance to the final wording of the amendment. However, this isn't the only reason as to why the 1st amendment is referring to the Christian "religions." Legally at the time, religion referred to the denominations of Christianity, not New Age "religions" and others.
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:34 pm

Hmm. Looking over this debate brings me to one question.

She is arguing the first amendment for freedom of religion. While that is in the Bill of rights the founding fathers meant it to be used with common sense. What would happen if I belonged to the religion of killyfun, which believes that you are supposed to murder a baby everyday as a service to God. Upon filling out my doctrinal duties I get arrested. At court I plead the first. Now you see if you have freedom of religion to do whatever you want it can lead to all sorts of problems. When the founding fathers wrote the first I believe they meant to allow one to practice his religion under law. Otherwise people can make up their own religion to do whatever they want. So as to whether or not she should be allowed I would say she shouldn't because the first allows for established religion not for ones you make up just for fun.
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PostSubject: all good points!   Tue Sep 28, 2010 3:01 pm

Hello all who have entered into this debate. You have all zeroed in on many of the key issues of this debate. We can most likely agree that what might appear to be just a small issue about a nose ring, could have huge implications for our legal system. How we define a religion, how we interpret the first amendment, and what we believe was the original intent of our founding fathers are all key areas of study to clarify the debate over this situation. Please know that how a judge decides in this case could very well influence future decisions about these type of issues. It's important that we also realize that the people we elect to make these types of decisions can in a very real way effect permanent change in our legal system.

We'll discuss this more tomorrow!
Thanks for sharing your thoughts in this regard!
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PostSubject: Whatever   Wed Sep 29, 2010 2:16 pm

It's a free country, the girl can do whatever as long as it is in accordance with the law. The "religious" body piercing is legal under the First Amendment, which supersedes the local school dress code.

Shocked

Yeah, that's right.
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Fri Oct 01, 2010 6:38 pm

[quote="Nathan W."]
She is arguing the first amendment for freedom of religion. While that is in the Bill of rights the founding fathers meant it to be used with common sense. What would happen if I belonged to the religion of killyfun, which believes that you are supposed to murder a baby everyday as a service to God. Upon filling out my doctrinal duties I get arrested. At court I plead the first. Now you see if you have freedom of religion to do whatever you want it can lead to all sorts of problems. When the founding fathers wrote the first I believe they meant to allow one to practice his religion under law.

So since you would be defending yourself with the constitution, then you obviously believe in original documents staying true and being applied. Therefore wouldn't you believe in the right to life that the Declaration of Independence assures. I mean after all, you do believe in original document. And since the right to life means that murder is wrong, which document would "cancel" out??? I know this doesn't really have anything to do with the article, but I was just wondering!

[quote="mrs. gray"]
A soft-spoken 14-year-old’s nose piercing has landed her a suspension from school and put her into the middle of a fight over her First Amendment right to exercise her religion.

[quote="Alex4JC"]
The "Church of Body Modification" is NOT a religion that requires you to pierce your body, "We honor all forms of body modification and those who choose to practice body modification for any reason. " ---- That came directly from the webpage. They Do Not Encourage body modification, they simply respect you regardless of whether or not you've modified your body.

As Alex said, it is not a requirement of the religion to have a body piercings. It says that they respect body modifications. Therefore she has no real excuse for wearing her nose ring since it is not really a part of her religion.



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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:37 am

I have to say I am diffidently not in agreement with the girl. Since the religion doesn't REQUIRE you to have a body piercing then she should NOT be protected by the right to free exercise of religion.
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PostSubject: Re: Girl suspended from school for wearing a nose ring.   Sat Oct 02, 2010 4:31 pm

Yes, that is true.

ali_n. Suspect
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