School Kids Forbidden to Hug in Fullerton, CA

by Todd Wiese

Here is yet another example of how America has gone regulation-crazy! Soon after Tammy Brown took her post as principal at Nicolas Junior High School in Fullerton, California, a ban on hugging on school grounds went into effect. Despite student complaints about the ban and even a meeting with School Board president, Robert C. Fisler, the ban remains in place. "The rule is, you keep your hands and your feet to yourself. The guideline is, no inappropriate displays of affection," warns Tammy Brown.

Rock Out Censorship would like to know when hugging became "inappropriate". "I've often been told that a simple hug can ease a troubled mind. In junior high, when troubles are blown way out of proportion, it's amazing what a hug can do," said Katrina Weed, 14, a Nicolas Jr. High student. She and a friend, Alicia Galvin, 15, complained about the ban to Robert C. Fisler, Fullerton School Board president and former teacher at Nicolas Jr. High. Their complaints went unanswered, however, as the board sided with Brown. "Hormones run rather high sometimes, and these kids hug each other and sometimes they clutch each other and they hold hands," Fisler said. Fisler claims this rule helps prevent allegations of sexual harassment.

R.O.C. would also like to know how hard it could possibly be to tell the difference between HUGGING and SEXUAL HARASSMENT, for crying out loud! If this story weren't so stupid, it would be laughable! A ban on hugging simply to prevent POSSIBLE sexual harassment not only creates a less-than-safe atmosphere (imagined or not) in which to study, but also fosters the already regulation-happy climate America lives in. We don't need to condition our children to grow up just as "nervous" as we are. One can't help but wonder if statements like this: "Gee, there must be a lot of sexual harassment here. I'd better watch out!" are already overheard in the hallways of Nicolas Jr. High.

"I think we need to lighten up a little bit about some of the things that we're beginning to regulate in this society." says Romona Ripston, executive director of the Southern California ACLU. And we at R.O.C. wholeheartedly agree. If you feel as we do, that going through junior high is stressful enough as it is and getting a harmless hug from a friend (something perhaps Tammy Brown didn't get enough of when she was in school) can be a great way to relieve that stress, please contact Nicolas Junior High and tell them so:

Nicolas Junior High School
1100 W. Olive Ave.
Fullerton CA 92833 U.S.A.
PH: 714-447-7775
FAX: 714-447-7586

Fullerton School District
1401 W. Valencia Dr.
Fullerton CA 92833 U.S.A.
PH: 714-447-7400

Ron Cooper, Ed.D.
District Superintendent

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