Newton North senior Henry DeGroot was visiting a school outside Bejing on a semester abroad earlier this year when he decided to have some fun and hopefully make a point by writing pro-democracy messages in the notebook of one of the Chinese students. “Democracy is for cool kids” “Don’t believe the lies your school and government tell you” and “It’s right to rebel” are three of the messages he penned. But when Chinese school officials found out, he was made to serve five hours of detention over there and when he returned home last month he was barred from his prom. Newton school officials say he violated semester abroad rules, embarrassed the principal of the Chinese school that was hosting Newton students and showed so much disrespect for the Chinese that the longstanding program may be harmed. DeGroot sees it differently. He says his rights were abridged by the Newton school system which taught him the importance of civil disobedience and speaking his mind, but punished him when he practiced what he learned.