A Canadian student's irreverent cartoons got him suspended from school. Now he's retaliating — with more cartoons.
Jack Christie, who's in Grade 12 at Donald A. Wilson Secondary School in Whitby, Ontario, made the videos for his Economics and Politics class. The Globe and Mail describes them thus:
Crudely animated stick figures swear and fire automatic rifles. There are off-colour jokes about everything from race to pedophilia to cocaine. Absurd incidents –- such as the assassination of an evil talking mango –- seem to happen at random.
Christie's teacher and classmates were apparently fine with the videos, but his disregard for linear storytelling and mango health caught the eye of school administrators when they showed up on YouTube. Christie was suspended, and told he could only return if he took the videos down. He hasn't complied, and has instead created a video response to school officials (above), asserting his freedom of speech. He has also said of the administrators who suspended him, "They've unfairly judged me and judged my character based on something I made for entertainment. I have the right to post videos on the Internet on my own time." A district spokesperson countered, "If something is considered detrimental to the positive moral tone of the school, it doesn't necessarily have to happen inside the school [for us to get involved]."
It seems a little strange that Christie's school only stepped in when the videos went public — this makes it look like they're more concerned with school's reputation than with its "moral tone." And if their biggest worry is having YouTube commenters find out that their teenage students are irreverent and enjoy cursing, they might want to adjust their priorities. As it stands, Christie's suspension looks a bit like something from one of his videos — an absurd incident that seems to happen at random.
Student Cites Freedom Of Speech After Suspension For Online Videos [Globe and Mail, via BoingBoing]