ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 1 (UPI) —
A Florida high schooler who dressed as condom-peddling superhero Trojan Man says he was trying to rescue his peers from the scourge of unsafe sex.
Jack Englund said he donned the Trojan Man costume, comprised of a cape and a blue poster board decorated to resemble a giant condom wrapper, for "character day" at Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando because he wanted to use the dress-up event to bring a message to his classmates about safe sex.
Englund said officials forced him to remove his costume when his first period teacher sent him to the office.
District spokeswoman Kathy Marsh told the Orlando Sentinel officials are given the discretion to prevent students from wearing anything with the potential to "cause an undue disruption to the normal order of classroom business."
Englund said he doesn’t consider his "piece of cardboard and cape" to be "any more distracting" than costumes worn by classmates including Nintendo characters Mario and Luigi.
Sandy Pfau Englund, the teen’s mother, said she thinks officials should have let Jack wear the costume.
"These are high-school students going to college next year," she said. "Let’s be realistic. They watch a lot of things on Netflix that are a lot more out there than the word ‘Trojan’ on a poster."
The mother, a lawyer, said she believes her son’s free speech rights were violated, but she does not plan to sue the school.
"All I want is an apology," Jack Englund said.