Write a Story, Go to Jail

By | August 22, 2003

Here’s a scary concept: What if you can be sent to prison for simply writing a story? It may happen to an Oklahoman high school student. Oklahoman Brian Robertson wrote “Evacluation Plan,” a story about atacking and then escaping from a high school. Some other students found the story on a computer and reported it to their instructor.

From there, things got out of hand. First, Robertson was suspended from school for a year. Now, he is being charged with a felony. If convicted, Robertson could spend up to 10 years in prison. For writing a story.

True, “Evacuation Plan” is not in good taste. But is writing a story – no matter how poor the taste – an offense justifiable of imprisonment? I don’t think so. I remember something called Free Expression, which I thought was one of the philosophical building blocks of this country. We are supposedly a free country. We are supposedly free to think what we want, and free to express those ideas.

Yet Mr. Robertson’s ordeal flies directly in the face of those concepts. Mr. Robertson has committed no crime, he was simply exercising his rights to free thought and free expression.

There is a website set up to aid Mr. Robertson.

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