Los Angeles, Dec 17 (ANI): Two middle-school students in the US have defended their decision to defy a school district ban of the popular 'I [heart] boobies!' bracelets, saying they did it for breast cancer awareness.
Brianna Hawk, 13, and Kayla Martinez, 12, were suspended from a Pennsylvania school in October for wearing the bracelets, which administrators had imposed a ban based on the district dress code.
"I think the school took the meaning of the bracelets out of context," the Los Angeles Times quoted Hawk as saying.
Both girls were represented by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, and they said on the stand that they used the word "boobies" at home to refer to breasts and considered it harmless slang.
They also testified that breast cancer awareness was important to them because the disease had affected members or friends of their family.
But lawyers for the Easton Area School District argue that the word, specifically when used in the phrase 'I [heart] boobies!' is lewd, vulgar and has no place in a middle school.
The purpose of the hearing was for U.S. District Judge Mary A. McLaughlin to decide whether to temporarily overturn the district's bracelet ban as the case continues.
Her decision could also send a signal to school districts across the country, which enacted similar bans.
Hawk said that after purchasing the bracelets, she researched the Keep a Breast Foundation, the non-profit group that created the bracelets, and breast cancer in general.
"In school, people would ask me, 'What's the bracelet for? What's the bracelet stand for?' and I could explain to them what it's about and what it's for," Hawk said.
"I could influence them to be aware of breast cancer and buy bracelets and raise money for the foundation," she explained. (ANI)