On December 16, 1965, three high school students in Des Moines, Iowa, conducted a peaceful protest by wearing black armbands to voice their opinions on the United States involvement in the Vietnam War. Mary Beth Tinker, John Tinker and Christopher Eckhardt had no idea their protest would be the catalyst to free expression in schools. After the students were suspended for protesting, the Tinkers felt it was their responsibility to stand up for the right to free expression in schools. This case led to a Supreme Court decision that allowed students freedom of expression as long as they didn't incite a disruptive response. This case broke new ground in identifying the rights of all Americans, including students.
"It can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their Constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate." -–Justice Abe Fortas, in Tinker v. Des Moines, 1969.