Call us today for help at 1-888-981-7509

Episode 33 - From Snapchat to the Supreme Court

Episode 33 - Children, Social Media, and Free Speech

Welcome to the top Texas Lawyers podcast. This podcast is brought to you by the law firm Abercrombie and Sanchez PLLC.

Your hosts are Bryan Abercrombie and Samuel Sanchez. Bryan has been practicing law for 18 years and his board certified that sort of legal specialization in the area of family law. Sam has been practicing for 13 years, is licensed in both Texas and Florida, and is a certified mediator. This podcast is for informational purposes only and all views are the opinion of the hosts. It's not designed to provide legal advice for your particular legal matter, and it should not replace the advice of competent counsel. Welcome. And we hope you enjoy the top Texas Lawyers podcast.

Hey, you remember this one, don't you?  A little Pink Floyd.

That's my youth right there.

You ever see that movie? The Wall was a pretty weird show. We were watching in the fraternity house in college. And, you know, after many beers, it was a very interesting experience. Well, anyway, welcome to the Top Texas Lawyers Podcast. I'm your host, Bryan Abercrombie, and with me, as always, is my co-host, Sam Sanchez. Sam, how are you doing?

Not too bad. Cream cheese on your bagel, my friend.

Yes, the ketchup to my hot dog, the sweet relish of life. The A-1 steak sauce to my tenderloin.

What, you don't put any sauce on your steak!

No, I really don't. But you're what makes life worth living. Sam. Let's just say, you're the cherry on top of the sundae. And, you know, we wanted to talk today about kids.  You're a dad. I'm a dad. We got kids. We got kids going to school. You've got kids in higher education; I've got kids in lower education. You know, there's a case before the Supreme Court right now if anyone's seen it in the news.  It involves a high school cheerleader who was suspended from, what, all school activities or extracurricular activities for what, a year, for something that she did on Snapchat after school hours. And as a dad, I just want to take a point of, I guess, personal privilege or an editorial point. As a dad, you know, I'm thinking to myself. I was raised as a child of the 80s and 90s and, you know, had to deal with that environment. That's what I had to deal with. Our kids today are being raised in a world where social media is everywhere, where, you know, you can say exactly what you want right away and post it and all your friends can see it. They're living and they're growing up in a totally different time than what we grew up in. I mean, so you got this girl, she drops F-bomb after F-bomb after F-bomb after she didn't make the high school varsity cheer team, the cheer squad, which you can understand that any any kid who competes and tries really hard to make a team, whether it be cheerleading or baseball or softball or whatever, and it doesn't make it will be disappointed and will probably will probably lash out a bit. This particular girl decided to lash out to about 250 of her friends on a Snapchat, which if anybody knows anything about Snapchat, normally your posts on Snapchat go way after about twenty four hours, and then school officials got wind of it and she was disciplined. So the real the real argument I guess they're talking about is the discipline, the action, the act -- that if she would have said that on school grounds or during a class or stood up during class and said it clearly, that would have been outside the student code of conduct at the school and she could have been disciplined at school, you know, all that kind of stuff.

In this particular instance, it wasn't until Saturday, on her own personal social media site. So this creates this huge free speech issue that now apparently is winding its way all the way up to the Supreme Court. Do we know how old this case is?

You know, I don't know how long, but I know she's in college now. And I think when they filed it, she was like the middle of her freshman year. So it's been out there for a few years winding its way through the courts.

okayay. So it creates a very interesting precedent, which is I think it's why the court tookay the case and why they're lookaying at it. You know, it's involving public education. I think the landmark case on free speech in the schools is a case called Tinker versus the Des Moines Independent Community School District. And it goes all the way back to 1969, which I'm sure you remember that came out just getting by now. But basically it was involving a girl who wore a black armband to school and protested the Vietnam War. And she was she was disciplined by the school for that. And the justices in a seven to two decision ruled in her favor because they said it was free speech and it was not disruptive.

And free speech doesn't necessarily end at the schoolhouse door. However, in other cases, they've they've said, okay, lewd conduct and different things like that is not necessarily free speech. And you can be reprimanded. So, you know, there's been kind of a back and forth on this thing. So now we've got this case involving a student who said something on Snapchat that's going goes away in twenty four hours and did it off school grounds. So did I fill in the background well enough?

You did it. That was a great summation. And I would tell you, like, so everybody kind of understands the issue that, as a parent, you know, that there legally are implications for anything that your child does. So this touches on a lot of different things because as a child, she's a minor.

Right.

And so she's always in somebody else's charge for the most part. Well, in this instance, she wasn't in the schools charge. It wasn't like she was in their care. She wasn't on a school trip. She wasn't at a school function. And so at what point, I guess what the court is going to consider and what's really the topic of our conversation is to what extent do you need to be careful about what your kids do? And we'll talk a little bit about that. But in relation to this case, where does social media fall with your kid's rights? Legally, what are the implications potentially not just in school, but out of school for social media and children?

And I think this case kind of highlights it for the court in relation to free speech, because what she's trying to assert is she's saying, lookay, I have free speech, whether it's on school grounds or off school grounds, but most specifically in my social media, I can say what I want to say. And if I'm not at school and I'm not talking to the school right, then why can't I say what I want to say? And how can you punish me for saying that? And that's a really tricky kind of slippery slope, because if you say, okayay, lookay. You can't punish her for things that she said on her private social media account. okayay, then what do you do with kids who are cyberbullying other kids online? School doesn't have the authority at that point if the Supreme Court comes down and says it's free speech. Then guess what? Everybody who wants to say something negative about somebody else on their social media, the school wants to come back in and say, we've got all these anti-bullying rules, cyberbullying -- you can't do that or I'll punish you at school. Well, schools couldn't do that anymore because everybody is going to say, hey, I've got free speech. I've got the ability to say what I want to say.

So that's one direction, but then flip it on the other side and you have to lookay at it and say, you know, that's a fundamental guarantee in our Constitution, the right to free speech without limits. Now, Bryan, you kind of  encapsulated that perfectly. It's free speech within a boundary. And minors have even more of those types of boundaries placed upon them. So it's the boundary that's really being tested right now. We have the Justice Kagan on the court was talking about making this Tinker decision a geography test. And what she meant by that, I think was on campus versus off campus, make that the determining factor when deciding whether or not a student conduct is worthy of discipline. Well, that's really about where the kid does it as opposed to what the kid did. Right?

Right.

And then, you know, they're talking about how this student was not allowed to participate in voluntary activities where the members are held to a higher standard because they're told they're going to adhere to a code of conduct. And obviously she didn't do that. So I think they're trying to make it a narrow ruling because I think this thing has the potential to go crazy. Like to your point about cyberbullying, you know, if they say, you know, that they've opened the door to everything, then, yeah, the cyberbullies could go rampant potentially.

But I think one of the justices, Stephen Breyer was talking about was disruption to the school when she did it? Like you said, she did it on a Saturday. I think some of the other cheerleaders saw it, and they were upset and told the coaches, but did it really disrupt the school? And that's another thing. I mean, obviously this girl is competitive and wanted to make the squad, and she was upset when she didn't. I think Brett Kavanaugh noted that Michael Jordan was cut from the basketball team, and I'm sure and it still hurt him 30 years later. He was still upset about it, you know. So, you know, obviously this has an impact on the kids. So I think it's a very interesting situation, if you've got kids in school. With the social media and school, kids have to be more careful with what they post. I mean, that goes without saying, I think, in this particular situation, but I think it highlights a good point when you're talking about kids and what they say and how what they post on social media, what they send to their friends can have a the viral effect where everybody knows about it.

And that's probably not what she intended. I mean, granted, she sent it up to 250 people, but, you know, I'm sure she was just upset in the moment. But now it's following her around. And you know, to Justice Breyer's point, I don't think that we can apply boundaries in the digital age because what we've created due to the digital technologies, the social media is a world with no boundaries. You can't comment on somebody who lives in Australia from The States and talk shit about what they wear or that you don't like their politics or whatever. You don't like their choice of mate. It doesn't matter if you like Australian politics. Yeah, exactly. This pick in their fashion sucks. But I'm saying, like, I think that to try to say that it's going to be a geographical boundary that's going to establish the applicability of whether or not schools have the authority to do that. I mean, if you're cyberbullying somebody just because you're in your house and not at your school, the implications of it, I think, still impact the school when they're saying disruptive. Well, what does that word mean? I mean, hell, I've pulled fire alarms and set off smokaye bombs in my school, and I'd say that was disruptive. Is you shooting off a Snapchat from your house disruptive? Well, I don't think so. But again, you know, these bright line tests that they're trying to come up with just highlight the complexity of the issue that the court is dealing with.

And really, it's not just this court and these issues. Parents are really dealing with this just like school districts are. So when we talk about, you know, legal liability for your children. Right. Things that you may have to consider, social media is one of those things that parents just really don't understand. And I'm going to let me rephrase that. This parent just really doesn't understand, okay? Because, like, I'm not at the time this stuff happened and there's stuff coming out every day on social media. There's new apps. There's new ways that these kids communicate that most parents, you know, heck, you're a dinosaur. Now, if you use Facebookay, you know, they're they're on to something else. Something else. Now, you know, right there, all the other youth are on to something else. I don't even know what that is. You know, it's probably tick tock or Instagram stories or whatever. But, you know, the dinosaur, the old people like us are on Facebookay. Right. And sure, there's a little bit something coming out tomorrow that's a more a fast way to share information. Right. And that when you lookay at it, it's as it's as much a tool as it is a weapon. okay, and what I mean by that is that if a child as an example is cyberbullying and they define that term for me, okay, but they're cyberbullying, another student and that student know there's implications psychologically, whatever it is that those parents want to file suit against you civilly for not properly maintaining supervision over your child's social media.

That's allowing them to cause psychological trauma to their child, intentionally inflicting emotional damage. These are the kinds of things that parents are like, what the hell are you talking about? Like, I mean, I gave him a cell phone. I didn't know the freaking hell that he was. I don't even know that, you know, I'm saying, like, that's not enough. And school that the lawyer for the the lawyer, to your point, that kind of counterpoint to your point, the lawyer argued that same thing is the is the kid required to carry the school house on their back everywhere they go and follow the rules of the school, everywhere they go, once they get off the school house grounds, you know, is it you? Are you are you okay? Are you good to go and exercise your rights? Lookay, I mean, you know, I'm sure it upset the coaches and everything like that when they've got a student who obviously was involved in a lot of different activities. In fact, the school fuck softball fucked your fuck everything and fired it off. You know, I'm sure that upsets the upsets the coaches. I mean, they want respect for kids involved in the game, be involved in their activities. But, you know, at the same time, you got to balance that with, you know.

Yeah, this kid probably should be able to voice their displeasure for something that happened at school. I mean, she's not necessarily to your point. I mean, she's not necessarily going after another student like, oh, Cathy over here made the cheer squad and then it didn't screw her. She's awful. She's this she's that she's she's all this other stuff and attacking her personally, she's not attacking anybody else is attacking the institution of the school in the activities and activities that they provide. Right. Or. So, yeah, I mean, to the to your point, I mean, it's a tough I wouldn't want to be a kid right now. I mean, you've got you know, you've got so much liability with these with these little devices here. You know, there's so much potential liability and so many traps you can fall into just by sending text messages or Snapchat or pictures or whatever. Oh, brother, let's take it one step further. okay, so, you know, we're in the we're in the age of the naked selfie. And so you're a 16 year old boy and there's an 18 year old senior girl or boy or whoever you want to work that calculation. And the younger kid is sending naked selfies to this older now of the age of maturity child. You know, I would still consider them. I know there are men and women at that point, but they're still kids. They're kids. They're getting stuck. And all of a sudden it's is this child pornography because they share that post with one of their friends, you know, their legal definition of it, you know, and parents are like, are you freaking serious? Yeah, yeah, we're serious.

And, you know, I mean, these are things while it seems like it's this really simple, small, very narrow issue, and I get why the courts are trying to make it, that it really is a much bigger, deeper issue that everybody is dealing with across a broad range of subjects. And so parents really need to be aware and say, you know, I've had a couple of cases where parents are coming in and they're involved in divorce or modification. And it's all based on the cell phone. You know, one parent is like helicopter parenting that child's phone and going through every connection and reviewing every pose. And the other one is objecting to that, saying you got to give them personal liberty and freedoms. But the second something comes up like that, that instantly the other parent wants to say, hey, you're not supervising our kid and lookay what happened. You know, they're now getting cyberbullied or they're now sharing naked pictures or receiving naked pictures and sharing them as child pornography. You know, I'm saying like, there's just a crazy there's a whole high school football team that got that got in trouble in Ohio for the the sharing of the sharing of abuse, right? Yeah. Yeah. And so, you know, I mean but now what I tell my my kids all the time is that they are living life, you know, post to post, image to image.

They get their news feed digitally the second that it happens, unfiltered, unedited on. And so, you know, we never experience that brother. What we're experiencing now is adults. You know, I'm saying like, if I have seen that as a kid or had the ability to do that, I can tell you right now I probably would have been playing football as long as I did. Coaches would kick my ass off of that frickin teen so fast, you know, like lookay at this picture of Sam, like stumbling drunk or whatever, or, lookay, you're out of there and again in the parking lot, you know, like so whatever it was, I can tell you that there wasn't what we have now, which is the instant ability to capture a life and share it in whatever emotional state. It's raw kind of moment to your point. So like she has this raw moment of frustration and anger and it's shared to people that she believes are her friends, which is she's got 250 friends. She's super popular. I'm just going to tell you right now, those are not social media is not friends. Most of the time. It's like people who know you have heard of you or don't even know you at all. And but it's easy to share because it's like this.

It's like people think of it is like this journal, right. Lookays like a video journal. Like you're sitting there just kind of documenting what's happening in your life and putting it it out into the like the nether reaches of the universe. The guy that's not into the nether reaches of the universe, it's to your contact. And in this instant, your community did help. Yeah, she sent it out to her community, which included other people on the team and possibly school officials. Because you know what? Most your leaders, you know, they sign a contract, a code of conduct that says, hey, we have the right to inspect and be a part of your social media accounts. So cheer coaches, football coaches, basketball coaches, track coaches, they're all saying, hey, I'm going to send you accept me as a friend and so I can monitor what my teams are doing. I'm making sure you guys aren't posting drunk selfies or naked so that it's that's something they should be doing, though. I mean, honestly, is that something that the school should be doing? I mean, at some point, these kids, you know, these kids got to have their own their own lives and their own individuality and their own ability to grow up. Is it is it the coach's responsibility or school officials responsibility to ride the moral police over these kids? Because, I mean, lookay, you played sports. I played sports. I had coaches that had done right.

I had coaches that I loved. I had coaches that I downright hated. And, you know, you the second you got out of that field house in the afternoon. You were f this coach f that guy, you know, this, that and the other thing I hate that guy can't stand that guy is he's a jackass, whatever it was. And then you have other coaches that you love, if that gets posted on Twitter or posted on Snapchat or whatever, when I'm 17 years old and a junior in high school and bitching about playing time, I'm off the team. I'm done. That's it. Michael Jordan, I'm sure he had something some probably something not so kind to say when he got cut from that freshman basketball team. If that was posted on Twitter, it's he never make it to the NBA because he's pumping gas in North Carolina somewhere because he never got a scholarship to North Carolina because he got kicked off the team, maybe a disciplinary issue. They didn't take him because he had no marks on his. I mean, it is a school job to follow these kids around. And I know they signed the codes of conduct and but they're their kids, too. At the end of the day, they're also still kids and they make stupid kid decisions. I mean, this clearly, I'm sure this girl is not thinking that this was a smart decision that she made, you know, but I guess the question is, should it care to follow her around for the rest of her life? It's going to because it's a Supreme Court case.

But should she have been cut from the team for an entire year? Because, you know, because of what she said outside of school and I guarantee you that there were probably a number of other girls that got cut from that cheer squad that probably shared that exact same sentiment, but they just didn't do it over social media. Sure, sure. Well, you know, the challenge that that presents, Bryan, is I think that we have, as a society and American society, really tasked schools with an improper role of parenting and raising our kids now. Right. I mean, so many yes. So many parents are sending their kids to school after not raising them at all, saying, well, that's a teacher's job. That's why I pay taxes so that you guys can do that. And so what schools have had to do historically up to this point is adopt these rules and rules that help give them the ability to try to parent these kids when they have and even sometimes when they don't. And so, like, you know, parents are always like there's a cyberbullying or a bullying event and they always want to go to the school and say, why aren't you doing more? Why can't you know I need you to protect my kids? And so you've got that side of the coin where parents are saying, I guess they're sending the texts in the lunch room at lunch, you know, the school can step in.

Right. But then you're like you said, you're making it a geographic test, right? Right, exactly. So they're like, hey, I stepped over to the 7-Eleven at my lunch time to call the teacher an asshole and tell my students that they're fucking idiots. And now I'm back on school. But, hey, guess what? I did it over there. It's like smokaying on school grounds. You can smokaye at your age. You can smokaye, but the school can't be off the bookays. Right. You go right across the street, do deal with the fight for other students saying like we were like nobody fights on school grounds but to feed off of school grounds, maybe we're getting it ongoing. Right. So, you know, but so like and schools are in that very difficult position now. I'm not going to defend them, especially in this situation, because I think she should have the right to say what she wants to do. But I'm going to tell you what, here's the deal about freedom. You have it, but you got to be willing to reap the whirlwind of the consequences of what you do. And that's my personal opinion. So she can say whatever she wants to say, as long as she understands that that meant she wasn't going to be on the team when they were going to take her to say that, hey, I should be able to say whatever I want to say and not comply with the code of conduct that I signed.

And you can't punish me for it. I think that's double dip and bullshit personally. But these, you know, a lot of them could they have not said, okay, fine, you can say what you want, but the school officials are going to remember that she said that. And, you know, they don't have to have a formal discipline thing, but they can say, okay, we're we're not taking a kid like that in the future. So she comes out the next year. She comes and tries out the next year and they say, too bad. So sad. We don't we don't want that kind of attitude around here. Yeah, I think that probably was going to happen no matter what and probably did, but you know what I mean. Then you go lookay at it and say, like, hey, she she commented about cheer softball, but she wants to be a basketball player and she's talented enough to make the squad and she hasn't shown any kind of attitude. She's been well behaved. And the coaches are like, yeah, well, us coaches got together and said, we're not taking you. You're blacklisted from playing because you said this about the cheer squad. I'm saying like, I don't have the good answer to that. I'll be honest with you. I just think that people have to understand personal freedoms and personal liberties and especially personal responsibility to exactly personal responsibility.

Because, like, it's like I would tell my son, I'm like, hey, you better. If you're going to pop off about somebody, you better be ready for that. Somebody to come back and put their fist in your face for what you said. So you just got to watch your words and know that if you're going to see him, say to him, you can stand behind him. And if you want to put the past on them, great. If you're going to take a will. Well, guess what? You said it. You just better be ready for it. I think in this situation, I feel like it's a little bit of sour grapes to have somebody say, yeah, I said it and I'm not apologetic of it. I'm just pissed off that now you blackballed me, I think. But I think what we're doing, we're letting the courts interfere in an area that really parents should parents and schools should be taking care of. And I and I have to I don't know anything about this girl's parents, obviously nothing. Nothing at all, but, you know, you try to raise your kids, you know, to be responsible, you try to teach you to try to teach them that your your actions have consequences. And whenever you you make statements like that, potentially that action has a reaction and there's going to be a fallout from it. Obviously, there was a fallout here from it, and, you know, while I can be sympathetic that kids do stupid things, sometimes they're supposed to mess up their kids.

And this is kind of my indictment, I guess, of social media as a whole, because once you put something out there, it's out there for all time and somebody's going to find it sometime. And should you be blacklisted for life for some something stupid that you said when you were 15 or 16 years old, when you have these people, you know, making comments when they're 13, 14, 15 years old and now they're twenty five in, these comments are coming back to haunt them because they maybe were stupid when they were when they were kids. I mean, kids in a way, they're not they're not free to mess up like we were, you know. And I'm not saying there's some sort of blanket amnesty that you get or anything like that, but, you know, at the same time, it's tough. It is absolutely tough because parents I mean, you can't as much as you want a helicopter over your kids, you got to let them grow up. But at the same time, you know, you can't you can't helicopter over no matter how hard you try. You can't helicopter over every hour of every day. And they're going to do stupid stuff because they're kids and they're learning. And sometimes you got to learn. I mean, I was hard hit and I had to learn some hard lessons, you know.

Yeah. Know here and. So, I mean, yeah, but it's a it's a tough it's a tough it's a tough decision to make. And I get you know, I get the free speech element of it and I get that you she ought to be able to say what she wants off the school grounds. I'm totally okay with that. And she ought to be able to pop off if she wants to. But at the same time, does she need mandatory school discipline, you know, because of what she said when she was out of school? Yeah, that is kind of what what we're talking about here, right? Yeah. Yeah. Because then honestly, it's going to get blacklisted either way. So. Right. So if it's overreaching, if if the school's actions, which I feel are overreaching. Right. You know, if this is something that the coach wants to do with, the coach already said she didn't make the team. And if the coach lookays at and says, well, that was a good decision on my part, she obviously has a shitty attitude. And so, like, yeah, I'm not unless she grows a lot, really impresses me. She may get it next year either. And she probably didn't if I was guessing. I don't think she was a cheerleader when the lawsuit was filed right now. Probably not when a lawsuit was filed. I mean, the other thing is, you know, she could have made it right. And most likely they she could have, you know, fallen on the sword, so to speak, and made an apology.

She could have done the same thing and an apology to two hundred and fifty people, you know, and said why she said it and said that she was stupid. She's learned something from her mistake or whatever. But to my knowledge, none of that happened. So, yeah, I mean, I think like it don't own their own their actions. No, no. And I think social media is definitely it's an instantaneous act. Right. It's really simple to kind of press the button, record yourself and shoot it out to everybody, you know, and everybody don't know to and to your point. And I got blown away. I got it, I got a 10 year old kid over last year, well, he's 11 now, but last year he was 10 and you know, they're doing the pandemic, they're doing the home schooling and everything like that. And all these kids are popping up these stupid Snapchat videos to each other all day and all night. Just stupid stuff. You know, him him trying on a bunch of hats or, you know, kids don't think through, you know, what they're sending out there. I mean, he's trying on a bunch of hats or he's, you know, shooting a video of himself, playing a video game or or singing a rap song or something like that. I mean, you know, they just don't think through these things.

And I'm sure it was a, you know, spur of the moment I'm upset, screw everything, you know, double big sticks and, you know, that's it. And I said what I said, but yeah, I mean, when you get a little bit of time to reflect on it and granted my kids 10 and this little girl's probably old enough to know better, but. You know. I know it's a really tough call and I understand both sides of the argument, I would probably tend to side with the free speech just because that's the kind of guy that I am. But at the school, the school has their point, I guess. Question is, can they levy discipline for something that happens on the school grounds? So back to your cyberbullying example, okay, their bullying, this kid nonstop after school, you know, going home and all of this, is that is that something that the school can step in and deal with? Right. Yeah. Or let's take it a step further. You're playing an extracurricular sport, right? It's a club sport. So it's while it's sanctioned through the school, it's not a school sport. It's, I don't know, friggin lacrosse. And they don't have an official team with the club. And there's an altercation. Can the school punish somebody who's not on school grounds? Right. Because it's at a park. It's playing against another club squad from a school. These are the types of things that school districts are having to wrestle with because and I get it because parents lookay at it and go, I can't do anything right.

So like in this situation, whether it's right now, we're talking about student organization, which I think makes it unique in that in and of itself does make it unique. It's not a student against a student. It's not a student gets a teacher administrator. It's a student against an organization making a comment about whatever it was, their impression. And I think in that instance, I think the court does have kind of if they wanted to, they could carve out that to say, hey, not on school grounds and it's student popping off about an organization. But let me put it to you this way. So does that mean that I'm going to change it? And I guarantee you would get a different response? There's a student who's Caucasian and they're in their pickup truck, fly-Fishing, not on school grounds, and the school has a Black Lives Matter organization and he does a Snapchat talking about half black lives matter F Black Life Matters Club F, that whole damn thing. I guarantee you that school is going to frickin punish that could guarantee you guarantee, and so and the kids are going to say same thing, free speech, right? okay, so flip it. Flip it. I think if you start letting it be organizations only, then what organizations is it? Only the kids. If it's different, if it's a school organization. Right. Because Chir is like a club, I think.

And so is if you're commenting about the football team, if you're commenting about the chess club that's part of the school or not, even the science club or the what is the, you know, the district that where you do like the decathlon team. That's the academic decathlon. Yes, academic decathlon. So what organization are you going to limit it to? Only off campus organizations. Are you going to limit it to clubs or are you going to say they can't comment about teams or they can or does it matter? And if it doesn't matter, then, dude, I'm telling you right now, like I was a hell raising kid. If I had social media do, my whole school would have been on blast centric interest in all kinds of people and an organization. And so I'm just saying, like to your point, Bryan, they're kids, right? You don't always know that what you're saying or what you're doing. It's stupid. You may just do it anyways. And even if you do that, their implications from it. So how does a school can operate in that environment? And if they don't control anything, does it devolve into this chaotic situation of like, you know, people getting all kinds of sideways? Because I guarantee you, if you're on the football team and somebody who doesn't make the team wants to pop off about the football team. You probably can have some problems, maybe, maybe that was just back in my day, but back in my day you talked shit about our team and you were probably going to get your ass kicked in the parking lot.

So these are the kinds of things that I think schools are wrestling with daily and trying to figure out like, hey, we have to have a threshold of behavior, but who sets it up there? Like your parents are going to set it? We're we're going to try to set it. And I think that's even more what the court is really wrestling with is free speech. When do they seem like this behavior? Said Reginald. Yeah, right. Well, except that you're popping up at a football game. If you're popping up as a as a student athlete, playing in a football game, you know that I think you can probably be disciplined for, you know, if you're doing something as representing the school. What if you're a fan in the stands? What if your student fans and fan in the stands, the rats on the other side? Yeah, you're right. I mean, are you the subject of discipline there and that situation? I mean, I don't know. I don't think it's going to be a really interesting decision. I agree with you, brother. I think that, you know, it seems like a simple issue, but it really has far reaching implications either way. Either way that they take it, it's really good to go from a lawyer, from a lawyer.

It's a cautionary tale. You know, we've got Live 360. We got parental controls all over our kids phones. Monitor your kids social media. Monitor what they're saying, you know, monitor what they're doing and talk to them about the far reaching implications of what they do because it can be fair or unfair. It can follow them around for a long time after they do the act, even if they're 11 years old when they do it. So, you know, it's something that we're trying to teach these kids to be good human beings. Right. And so, you know, having respect for for for schools, having respect for their friends and things like that, it's probably something they should they should really consider doing it, you know, on their social media posts and things like that. But kids, like I said, kids are kids and they don't always think about that. And sometimes parents don't have as much control over kids as they would like to have. And sometimes it's not necessarily their fault. So it's a it's a tough world these kids are growing up in. And like I said, it has far reaching implications. I'm I'm I'm at a loss. I don't know that I'll be interested to see what this but this decision is because I worry about that stuff every day because, you know, you never know what your kid's going to do and you never know what it's going to what it's going to mean.

You hope you raise them right. You hope you teach them right from wrong. You hope to help you teach them to make the right decisions. But, you know, kids don't always make the right decisions. That's just that's just life. Yeah. Very charming since. Agreed. So I guess we'll find out. So how do they get a hold of you, Sam, if somebody wants to come talk to you about a legal issue, how do they really get in touch with you? So I am obviously down in the Miami area, also in Dallas, Fort Worth. You can reach me at 817-914-5470. Or you can email me directly at ssanchez@astxlegal.com or visit our website at www.astxlegal.com.

And I'm in the Houston-Woodlands area, but we also have an office in Austin, and I can be reached at 281-374-4741or at babercrombie@astxlegal.com. You can always find on the internet on Instagram or Facebook. We also have a website at astxlegal.com, so you can reach us there as well. But Sam, thank you for the time today. I think this is an interesting discussion. I think we definitely haven't heard the last of it. And we were probably going to see a lot more of this stuff coming down the road that I would agree with.

Thank you for listening, and we hope you enjoyed the Top Texas Lawyers Podcast. If you'd like to schedule a consultation with either Bryan or Sam, please call 1-888-981-7509. Or visit us on the web at astxlegal.com. Once again, that's astxlegal.com. Thank you very much.

Scroll To Top