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 Kansas teen wont apologize 2 governors office 4 Twitter post 
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Modmin Dude
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Post Kansas teen wont apologize 2 governors office 4 Twitter post
CNN wrote:
Kansas teen won't apologize to governor's office for Twitter post
By Karen Smith, CNN
updated 12:56 PM EST, Mon November 28, 2011

(CNN) -- A high school senior, who faces a Monday morning deadline to apologize to Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback for a disparaging tweet, has said she will not write the apology letter.

"I don't think I should write the letter, and I don't think it would be the best move for me," Emma Sullivan, 18, said late Sunday night. "At this time, I do not think an apology would be a sincere thing for me to do."

Sullivan said her parents and many of her peers support her decision.

The teen made national headlines last week for a tweet she said was intended just for her friends.

During a Kansas Youth in Government field trip to the state Capitol on November 21, Sullivan wrote: "Just made mean comments at gov brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot."

The Shawnee Mission East senior said she did not actually talk to Brownback, and the post referenced a joke she had with a student on the trip.

The next day, she was called into high school principal Karl Krawitz's office.

"I had no idea what it was about or why I was being called into the office," she said. "I had never been in trouble before."

A Brownback staffer had notified the principal, she said.

"My principal told me he needed to do damage control and was really upset," Sullivan said. "He said I was an embarrassment to the school and the school district and that I had been disrespectful."

The principal then asked her to write a letter of apology to Brownback and his staff. He set Monday as the due date for the letter.

Sullivan said she did not know what will happen when she does not turn in the letter Monday. But she hopes the tweet will bring attention to the issue of free speech.

"I hope there won't be any consequences and that my principal and the governor's office can move on," she said. "The issue is relevant and, if anything, is a starting point of dialog with the governor about his policies and how our First Amendment rights can be taken away."

Sullivan said she has not heard from the governor's office directly. But, following the media attention, her Twitter follower count has rocketed from 65 to more than 4,000 in the last week.

"I hope that the governor realizes the power of the people and how people can make things happen," she said. "I also hope he will spend his time doing more productive things."

CNN contacted both Brownback's office and Krawitz's office but received no response.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/11/28/us/kansas ... ?hpt=hp_t3

I don't blame her, I wouldn't write an apology either. What the hell does the principal think this is? Demanding that she write an apology. How about our elected officials start writing US apologies for the way they've treated us and this Country?

Perhaps someone can explain to me how this wouldn't be considered protected free speech.

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November 28th, 2011, 2:16 pm
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Modmin Dude
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Post Re: Kansas teen wont apologize 2 governors office 4 Twitter
Perhaps cooler heads will prevail.....

ap.org wrote:
Nov 28, 1:50 PM EST
Kansas gov. says staff overreacted to teen's tweet

By JOHN MILBURN and BILL DRAPER
Associated Press

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback apologized Monday for his office's response to a disparaging Twitter post by a high school senior who was attending a school function at the state Capitol.

"My staff overreacted to this tweet, and for that I apologize," Brownback said in a Monday statement emailed to The Associated Press. "Freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms."

Emma Sullivan, 18, of the Kansas City suburb of Fairway, Kan., was taking part in a Youth in Government program last week in Topeka, Kan., when she sent out a tweet from the back of a crowd of students listening to Brownback's greeting. From her cellphone, she thumbed: "Just made mean comments at gov. brownback and told him he sucked, in person (hash)heblowsalot."

She said she was just joking with friends, but Brownback's office, which monitors social media for postings containing the governor's name, contacted the youth program. Sullivan said she spent nearly an hour in the principal's office and was told to apologize in writing to the governor.

As word of the governor's office reaction spread, Sullivan went from 61 Twitter followers before the incident to more than 9,000 Monday - more than three times the number that follow Brownback's official Twitter account.

The Shawnee Mission East senior decided to not write the apology letter and the school district issued a statement Monday saying there would be no repercussions.

"Whether and to whom any apologies are issued will be left to the individuals involved," the statement said. "The issue has resulted in many teachable moments concerning the use of social media. The district does not intend to take any further action on this matter."

Doug Bonney, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas and Western Missouri, said the teen's speech was clearly protected by the First Amendment.

"Saying that the governor is no good and is a blowhard is core protected speech," Bonney said. "It's absolutely what the First Amendment was designed to protect."

Sullivan's 19-year-old sister, Olivia, told the AP her sister was in school Monday when their father talked to school officials. The elder sister, who initially alerted the media about what happened, said she texted with her sister and the teen told her "things were fine."

Emma Sullivan said Sunday that she thought the tweet "has turned into a good starting point to open up dialogue about this ... free speech and the power of social media and the power that people my age could potentially have, that people will listen to us."

----

Milburn reported from Topeka. Draper reported from Kansas City, Mo. Associated Press writer Heather Hollingsworth in Kansas City, Mo., contributed to this report.

© 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/ ... 8-13-50-21

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November 28th, 2011, 4:26 pm
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