Forest Lake school bans Taylor Gang shirts because 'name is code word for marijuana use'

Taylor Gang or Die.jpg
As far as Century administration is concerned, this shirt might as well have a big pot leaf on it.
Taylor Gang records is an acclaimed hip hop record label. Founder Wiz Khalifa was even nominated for two Grammys this year.

Unsurprisingly, Gang's rappers, like many others, often sing the praises of ganja in their lyrics. Label artist Juicy J, for instance, recently penned a track called "Smoke That Bitch" where he runs down some of his favorite marijuana strains -- Purple Kush, Sour Diesel, OG Kush, and so forth -- then professes his love for smoking large quantities of each.

But in a decision that seems to lead down an awfully slippery slope, administrators at Forest Lake's Century Junior High have decided students cannot wear Taylor Gang clothing to school -- not because the shirts depict pot leaves or paraphernalia, but rather because, in the words of Century Principal Ben Lewis, Gang's "brand and name are code words for marijuana use."

Sanita Rouse, a student at the school, is a big Wiz Khalifa fan. Rouse told KSTP she admires the rapper because "he has a way of expressing life-things in different terms with his music."
Sanita Rouse.jpg
Rouse may have poor taste in music, but her shirt doesn't appear to be in violation of Century's dress code.

To show her admiration, Rouse likes to wear a "Taylor Gang or Die" t-shirt. But when she wore the shirt to school, teachers told her to either take the shirt off or wear it inside-out. Principal Lewis has now banned all Gang-related shirts from school because of the label's association with smoking herb.

Rouse asked Lewis to explain the ban. The principal told her that the shirts are "basically saying I got weed or I smoke weed, come and get it," Rouse said.

Century Junior High's dress code prohibits "clothing that displays tobacco, alcohol, drugs, drug paraphernalia, sexual innuendo, or offensive words, pictures or symbols." It does not prohibit clothing associated with artists who like to "smoke that bitch" before dropping bombs in the studio. Or rolling out of bed in the morning.

Rouse thinks singling out Taylor Gang clothing constitutes a double standard.

She said: "There are country music artists that sing about chewing tobacco or drinking beer, yet we can't wear our shirts?" 


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13 comments
swmnguy
swmnguy topcommenter

It's nice to know that Principal Lewis has the luxury of being so far removed from reality.  No principal who has to deal with any real problems would be able to be so clue-free.  And "Michelle Bachmann" is right.  Any self-respecting local kid should be staying true to Doomtree or Rhymesayers.  Indeed, Brother Ali's kid is in my daughter's class.  She thinks he's a P.I.T.A., though.  Oh, well; it's sixth/seventh grade.  Plenty of time to grow up.

yo
yo

thats dumb..its a record label

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

I agree with Forest Lake.  Minnesota kids should be pledging their allegiance to Doomtree or Rhymesayers.  I'm not familiar with Wiz but that's because I generally avoid rappers named after bodily functions.   Nothing says creative like ripping off P Diddy's get out the vote message though.   Maybe old Wiz could twist a Justin Bieber song to show how hard he is next!  

Sparky
Sparky

I guess the clocks will be programmed to skip 4:20 as well........

amiller92
amiller92

This should be an unconstitutional content-based restriction on student speech, but probably isn't, because the supreme court thinks "drugs" are an exception to free speech.

Guy
Guy

surely this will stop teenagers from smoking weed. good work, wise administrators.

JonnyBeGood
JonnyBeGood

The more reason why school uniforms are so much more important.

Research
Research

Sanita Rouse sounds like a strain of weed. 

Buildbridgesapparel
Buildbridgesapparel

Taylor Gang actually refers to the Chuck Taylor Converse shoes Wiz and his friends wore during high school, and therefore were called "Taylor Gang". 

JonnyBeGood
JonnyBeGood

 WTF - it's a school - what has student speech go to to with this?  They scum are all going to claim benefits anyway!

Bobby
Bobby

Yep... and therefore you can be drug-free and still be a member of "Taylor Gang". This is silly.

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