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Fifth grader forced to take off fire department t-shirt. Intercourse banned in NC elementary school.

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It's a legitimate fire department t-shirt from a more than 100-year-old fire company in Pennsylvania. But when 11-year-old Art Lawrence, the son of a firefighter, wore that t-shirt to school recently in Rockingham County, North Carolina, he was ordered to take it off. The problem for those in charge at the school was the name of the fire department printed in big letters on the shirt. It reads Intercourse Fire Company. The t-shirt from Lancaster County Company 44 was sent to Art by his firefighter uncle in New Jersey. As you will see in the video above, Art's family is not happy the boy was told to take off the shirt.

People have been making fun of Intercourse, Pennsylvania for a long time and I imagine some of Art's classmates would have done the same. So what do you think? Did those in charge make the right call on this one or did they act prematurely when they thrust themselves into the situation and banned Intercourse in school? Or is it possible I'm just jealous that I didn't think to try and get away with that when I was in school?

NC Rockingham County Intercourse t-shirt

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Anonymous

    This is BS. I mea I can understand if the shirt just had the word the word on it, but come on it is from a town in PA. And its from the FD from said town.


  • ricko

    Twerk it

  • Tom Tisano

    Obviously it's the liberal, southern Baptist people that want to try and suppress everything that they don't like or approve of…..forcing their belief's on everyone else…I hail little Art for his support of the Intercourse Fire Company in Pennsylvania. I am from Pennsylvania and support him, along with every fire department out there, either paid or volunteer…shame on the school for their in-appropriate behavior!

    • Fire21

      You're WAAAAY off base trying to blame this on any religion.  The school did the deed, not one of the churches.  I can't imagie where you even got the idea, since it wasn't mentioned in the video or the text.  

    • Capt Christopher

      What do Southern Baptist people have to do with this story, Tom? The school system found fault with the term "intercourse" on the boy's t-shirt, not the Baptist. Society has been removing religion from schools very efficienty over te pass few decades. Don't drag the Southern Baptist crowd into your rant.

  • Firefighthero

    I'd tell the school to go "intercourse" themsevles.  Merry Christmas Dave.  (oops…am I allowed to say that?)

  • Former Chief

    I think school administrators in far too many jurisdictions have lost all common sense and their collective sense of humor.  The censorship and political correctness that is pervasive in many school districts is ridiculous.  What would they have done if he wore a Blue Ball Fire Co. t-shirt?  Have him arrested?  Come on man.

    On a happier note; Merry Christmas and Happy and Safe New Year to everyone.

  • BFD70

    Typically, school dress codes include a rule prohibiting "disruptive" clothing. I'm guessing that shirt would disrupt a group of 11 year old boys. School was right.

  • puzzled

    Would not be an issue for my children. They wouldn't be wearing it to school to start with. During the holiday break, after school, or during the summer, they could Intercourse, Climax, or Blue Balls FD shirts everyday. It is not appropriate attire for school.

  • Wizzer49

    The educators should know that the definition of intercourse is human interaction. Sexual intercourse is…

    But with that being said, I agree with Puzzled and BFD70, my kid wouldn't wear that shirt to school. We all know why his now "Favorite" uncle picked and sent that shirt. It might be different if the uncle was on that company. 

    • njff

      I was going to say the same thing . I know alot of guys in NJ with these shirts . They wear them for the shock value .

      The only FD T-shirts I wear are from my dept , unless it's a tribute shirt like charleston 9 or 911 FDNY shirts

    • Heather Lawrence

      that shirt was purchased there by our "favorite" uncle because that is where his vacation house is and as a fireman he supports the local volunteer fire dept when they sell shirts


  • Heather Lawrence

    I wanted to thank you all for supporting my son. And i want to thank all firefighter, police offiers, and EMTs for their service – no matter what the name of the city/town they work for is in.

    Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy 2014.

    • T. Jones

      Merry Christmas!! My bf and I would like to send your son one of our shirts as well. you can email me at : teresa at reasnorfire dot com. Reasnor FD…Woohoo!!

  • vbarbee

    I feel all schools nation wide should go to uniforms anyway. Then you won’t have this issue. With that said I’m a firefighter and my children would never wear anything fire related to school especially the ones that displays the fire department name on it. Outside of school display your department. Far as me I love my department and love being a firefighter. Honestly would have to say I don’t own any shirts like that and probably never will no need. Off duty you will never be able to tell im a firefighter. You don’t see off duty cops walking around with police department shirts,or nurses, doctors, city workers or any occupation.

    • Mark too

      Maybe you should get out more.  There are plenty of examples out there of some of the occupations you listed and others in which people wear clothing that bears reference to their occupation or employer while "off duty".

  • IMHO

    I am a volunteer firefighter and a school janitor. What would be considered normal in a tavern, is not considered normal in a school.

    The school did what was right. Remove the shirt. Even though the fire company has that particular name, it cannot be shown in a school.



    Save it for the summer break.

  • Anonymous

    Send him a shirt from Bird In Hand…

  • Legeros

    We're all Ho's this time of year, anyway. What hypocracy.

  • Anonymous

    I agree with wizzer 49 -intercourse does not always mean sexual intercourse. dirty minds

  • OldCityCaptain

    For those of you who think that this is liberal or Southern Baptist ideals that are supressing your freedom of speech, you are wrong. It's all about morals….doing what's right for the common good. I am no prude, or liberal, or southern baptist…but I was raised to do what is right, to display proper decorum when in the company of women and children, and to set a good example! We all know that this shirt has a duel meaning……The official name of a fire company and town in Penn. and a more sexual ideal. Both are allowed and I would never suppress someone's right to their opinion or free speech, BUT…..the shirt in the eyes of prepubescent kids has only one meaning, and it causes a disruption in the entire school. The parents knew that when they sent the kid to school in that shirt, and probably expected the phone call, IF they have any morals at all.

      My rant is over…..I love dirty jokes, funny sayings, and all kinds of shenanigans!….but, I have not given in to the ideal of innapropriate behavior in public, and allowing that behavior from my children!!!

  • Anonymous

    This is complete BS!  I find the tie of the pricipal offensive…take it off!


    Pussification of America!!

  • marchansen

    Just out of curiosty… How are the teachers going to explain the area on a plane where a pilot sit? 


    • Anonymous

      flight deck

  • Bryan Ebling

    While I get why the school may consider the tee shirt disruptive, particularly if the students were acting in that capacity.  I think the teacher should have used the opportunity as a teaching moment.  I've personally visited the town many times, it's in the heart of the Lancaster County PA Amish Country.. Can you say conservative views…. Have the class learn the definition of Intercourse, research the town's history and how it came to be named Intercourse… It's not what you THINK!   In my opinion a missed opportunity!   

  • JLo

    Not school appropriate.

  • Texas Gordo

    Had it been the Pen Island Fire Department, I would have been a little more impressed. That said, is there anything you can say to a middle school boy that won't be misconstrued to be a sexual reference.

    Given that 77% of the students enrolled at Huntsville Elementary School were considered proficient on their academic testing, I'd encourage the school to worry about the bigger issues.

  • Get over it!

    The school will always be right. It really doesn’t matter that there is a fire station with this name, the word “intercourse” is not appropriate for a young child’s shirt and the parents should know this already…maybe. “Virginia is for lovers, but Pennsylvania has intercourse.” I’m sure the parents would have thought this shirt would have been okay for their young child to wear to school also.

  • Mid West Chief

    Nicely said "Old City Captain". 

  • Former Chief

    While I respect everyone's opinion, I find it disturbing that so many people are agreeing with the school on this action.  That shirt was not profane, racist, or deragatory in any way shape or form.  I would like to know if the shirt caused any disruption in the school or if it was only offensive to the Asst. Principal.  The school Superintendant couldn't even give a legitimate explanation during his interview, at least what we saw of it.  So if one school administrator doesn't like a shirt, it's not appropriate?  What if a student wore an American flag shirt, or a Confederate flag shirt, or a shirt in support of the military, or against the military?  What about a sports team shirt, like the Washington Redskins (which apparently is now offensive to some people, although I don't know who would want to wear a Redskins shirt after this season), or the South Carolina Gamecocks?  I think someone needs to explain the difference in definitions of "intercourse" and "sexual intercourse" to the Asst. Prinicipal.  I am really bothered by some of these types of arbitrary decisions being made in our schools.  Where does it end?  I thought this was a free country?

    • Heather Lawrence

      The shirt cause no disruption at all in class. He was in class and in PE, no disruptions. The prinicpal saw him walking back to class and saw his shirt. She called the homeroom teacher and asked him to come to the office. She couldnt even expalin to him why he had to take his shirt off (she told me this herself) and had him wear a school shirt that was two sizes too small. He goes back to class confused, the teacher is even confused, and the students caued more of a distraction picking on him for going to the prinicpals office (like we all use to fear) and the fact that he had on a tiny tight shirt. I recived a phone call after the fact with no explanation. Went to the school after recieiving a text from my son begging me to come to school. The teacher said she didnt understand but knew it had to do something with the word intercourse. So I went to speak with the prinicpal and she said that the word embarassed her and felt it would be best if he removed his shirt.

      Thanks for your support, Heather Lawrence

  • RJ In florida

    Mily cyrus twerking repeated on TV for days is OK….fire department shirt, foul?

    god bless america

    To former chief: anything can be declaied offensive (all you need to do is complain)

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