The ACLU has filed a lawsuit against a Johnston County High School in North Carolina claiming they are violating her right to freedom of Religion. A 14-year-old and her family claim to be part of a small religious group called ” The Church of Body Modification”. Her mother joined this religious group in 2009 and her daughter followed a year later.
This group sees tattoos and piercings as “Channels to the Divine”. The young lady has been suspended for 4 weeks for refusing to follow the High School’s Dress Code against nose piercing. The Dress Code forbids facial piercing, short skirts, sagging pants, abnormal coloring of hair and other items deemed disruptive or distracting.
The Dress Code does allow for exemptions based on “sincerely held religious beliefs”. The Code forbids the Principal on deciding if the belief is valid but only if the belief is central to religious doctrine and sincerely held.