This case further develops the students’ image in a positive fossil watches chronograph light when it discusses the course of events that happened leading up to the hearing. Within the first two paragraphs of the court case’s text, the word “prayed” is used multiple times in reference to the student’s hopes that their injustices would be heard and appealed. Using a word such as “prayed” is another means in which the students’ethe is constructed, not only by creating an image of religion, but by suggesting that there needs to be some divine intervention for such an injustice to be overturned.
If this case were purely objective, the syntax would likely include words such “waited” or “hoped for,” which are much less suggestive towards the character of the students. Another instance when such syntax is put to use is during the discussion of the opinion of the court. For example, the court states, “As we shall discuss, the wearing of armbands in the circumstances of this case was entirely divorced from actually or potentially disruptive conduct by those participating in it. It was closely akin to “pure speech” which, we have repeatedly held, is entitled to comprehensive protection under the First Amendment” (a case). Here, the court makes it clear that the student’s rights have been restricted unfairly. The court makes a distinction between the conduct of the students and disruptive conduct by blatantly stating how separate they are, using the word “divorce.” Furthermore, the court compares the wearing of the armbands to that of ‘pure speech,’ which is a fundamental right of the First Amendment. In doing so, the syntax of the speech makes a strong case for the students, proving the difference in the student’s actions and the school’s rule of non-disruptive behavior.
After providing an important summary of boring case, what rights the case involves, and what injustices are being argued, an important aspect of this case is the argument of definition of the First Amendment and a student’s rights within it. For example, the case argues that a student has rights of free speech and freedom of expression. But, what justifies such? One example in the case that further analyzes this is the catalog of different symbols of expression students partake in at school: “It is also relevant that the school authorities did not purport to prohibit the wearing of all symbols of political or controversial significance. The record shows that students in some of the schools wore men’s fossil chronograph watch relating to national political campaigns, and some even wore the Iron Cross, traditionally a symbol of Nazism. The order prohibiting the wearing of armbands did not extend to these” (cite). Here, the student’s defense creates a catalog of examples that involve a student’s right of freedom of expression, pointing out that even though wearing an armband clearly falls into the same category as wearing an “Iron Cross,” school officials singled out such students for doing so. By creating a catalog of examples, the defense is able to show by example how similar actions should be treated with similar punishment or acceptance. Since school officials did not punish students for wearing other symbols, students wearing black armbands should not be punished either.
It is also important to linger upon the significance of the court’s reference to cultural images. Referring to the Iron Cross and Nazism is a culturally relevant issue during this case, as most of the jury would have been alive during, or at least aware of, the significance that wearing the Iron Cross would have in a school setting. Since Nazism is generally regarded as a negative idea, wearing a symbol that suggest support of that is a good contrast argument to make when discussing the issue the school has with students wearing black armbands in protest of another culturally significant issue. Here, culture plays a large role in how the jury understands the context of the situation. On the one hand, by discussing the past symbol usage of Nazism, the court is arguing in favor of the student’s right to free speech. But, when comparing such symbolism to the Vietnam War, which is much more recent and significant in the context of the argument, further investigation on the issue has to take place in order to come to a decision.