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Student sues school district after allegedly being disciplined for pro-gun shirts

A middle school student has sued his district for punishing him twice over allegedly pro-gun shirts. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

A middle school student has sued his school district after twice being allegedly disciplined for wearing clothing his school perceived as promoting guns, according to the Reno Gazette Journal.

"This lawsuit challenges, at its core, the school district's policy which we believe is unconstitutionally overbroad and violates the First Amendment on its face," said Brandon Combs, president of the Firearms Policy Coalition.

What's the story?

The student, identified in the lawsuit as G.M., is an eighth-grader at Depoali Middle School. He is the son of local police dispatcher Audrey Guardanapo and U.S. Marine veteran Shaun Guadanapo.

The lawsuit claims that G.M. was first disciplined on Nov. 20, 2017, for wearing a shirt from Sparks Black Rifle, a local gun store, which used the silhouettes of a rifle and a handgun on the logo.

According to the suit, he was disciplined a second time on March 12 for wearing a shirt that read "Don't Tread On Me," which did not have any gun-related imagery.

The lawsuit alleges that G.M. was told by a teacher to cover his shirt, and that the teacher said he can have his "Second Amendment rights when he turns 18."

"The shirt did not promote or advocate illegal activity; it contained no violent or offensive imagery; nothing on it was obscene, vulgar or profane ... and yet (the student) was prevented from wearing his shirt based on school officials' disagreement with the message they believe it conveyed," the lawsuit read.

What did the school district say?

The school district did not comment, except to say it was "looking into the allegations."

What organizations are supporting the lawsuit?

The lawsuit was filed by G.M.'s parents with support from the Firearms Policy Foundation and the Firearms Policy Coalition, groups that advocate for Second Amendment rights.

The FPC recently released a guide to help pro-gun students use their freedom of speech to push back against the widespread gun control protests of the past few months.

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