A Hispanic principal sent kids home for wearing American flag apparel to school on Cinco de Mayo. The article below concludes by saying “We’re not going to be sending kids home for wearing American flags or wearing patriotic colors,” “That’s discriminatory.”
Principal Miguel Rodriguez has taken school district policy into his own hands primarily because he is Hispanic. Rodriguez was probably angry with the students for daring to wear American flags on Cinco de Mayo and decided to take matters into his own hands and remove the kids from school. Now Rodriguez is back peddling and saying he feared for the kids safety.
Its too late Mr. Rodriguez. The kids that were singled out in front of their peers and forced to leave school under the threat of being suspended or expelled were already racially profiled and sent home for the mere act of acting patriotic.
What do the excuses that Mr. Rodriguez uses say about the Latino community as a whole? That if you dare to wear clothing that is patriotic toward America on Cinco de mayo, you will get your ass kicked by Hispanics?
Cinco de Mayo is not a national holiday. The 4th of July is a national holiday. Cinco de Mayo is just another beer drinking day, like St. Patrick’s day. I have never read a story where an Irish principal sent kids home from school for disrespecting the Irish.
The idea that these Hispanic students are parading around downtown Morgan Hill waving Mexican flags and demanding respect is reprehensible. Where is your respect for America and its people? You kids are a bunch of wet behind the ears green ass pooh butts that are blinded by the color of your own skin.
Hispanic children have been indoctrinated into the notion that your race and culture is better than any other. Is this not racist behavior? Does this kind of thinking mot make Miguel Rodriguez and virtually all of these students bigots? If the roles and countries were reversed, and this was an American principal in Mexico, he would be beaten to death and his remains sent back to America in a box.
To expect Americans to sit back and watch as Latinos extol the greatness of a corrupt, lawless nation of drug gangs and pirates is disrespectful to all Americans.
About 200 Hispanic teens are marching in Morgan Hill yelling “We want respect!” and “Si se puede!” in reaction to a controversy ignited when the Live Oak High School principal effectively sent four students home for wearing T-shirts with American flags on them during Cinco de Mayo.
Mexican-American students felt the students were being disrespectful on the only day they celebrate their heritage while students sporting red, white and blue said it violated their First Amendment rights.
Six police cars and a Morgan Hill motorcycle officer have been cruising alongside the large group as it marches.
The group – mostly high school students – walked out of school this morning after the story of four students who were sent home because they wore American flag T-shirts went viral on TV and online. Many wear red, white and green and two large Mexico flags can be seen at the front of the line.
The students say they want people to know they’re proud of their heritage and they believe wearing red, white and blue on Cinco de Mayo is disrespectful.
Many of the students are from Live Oak High School, who left school around 11 a.m. this morning and decided to march to the school district headquarters just north of Tennant Avenue. When they arrived, they were told to leave.
“We did this to support the Latino-Hispanic community,” said Francine Roa, who graduated from Live Oak in 2005. She brought her 2-year-old son, Elias Martinez, on the march.
She said it’s a peaceful march to support Mexican-Americans in Morgan Hill.
The crowd is en route to Morgan Hill City Hall on Peak Avenue.
The controversy has become the focus of national media attention today. The story has appeared across the country on national media outlets, including the front page of foxnews.com, The Drudge Report and MSNBC.
In addition, at least four Bay Area TV news stations set up camp in front of Live Oak High School.
It was originally thought that five students were sent home, but one did return to class Wednesday.
This morning, some students were seen wearing red, white and blue in support of the four students. Some teens spread the word on Facebook since Wednesday’s incident encouraging Live Oak students to show their patriotism by wearing their colors.
Live Oak officials were silent on the issue and asked that TV crews stay near the street in front of the school. So far, no further comment has been made since Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez and Principal Nick Boden told the students they must turn their T-shirts inside-out or face suspension. The parents of the students met them campus and took the four students as an unexcused absence.
Uncle Sam even embarked onto Live Oak this morning in the form of John Massina, a San Jose resident, who said he was so enraged that he drove to Morgan Hill to protest.
“I’m terribly upset that these patriotic students were sent home,” Massina said. “I wanted to make a statement. This is absolutely wrong.”
The four students met with Assistant Superintendent Jay Totter Wednesday evening at the district headquarters and they said Totter said what happened to them was wrong and “they would take care of it.”
It’s unclear at this time what was meant by that comment.
Officials at the school chose not to comment on the situation Wednesday, but one student said an official called the T-shirts “incendiary.”
“They said we were starting a fight, we were fuel to the fire,” said sophomore Matt Dariano.
The Morgan Hill Unified School District issued this statement: “In an attempt to foster a spirit of cultural awareness and maintain a safe and supportive school environment, the Live Oak High School administration took certain actions earlier today.
“The district does not concur with the Live Oak High School administration’s interpretation of either board or district policy related to these actions.”
Five teens were sitting at a table outside during their brunch break about 10:10 a.m. when Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez asked two boys to take off their American flag bandannas. The boys said they complied. In the same conversation, sophomore Dominic Maciel said, Rodriguez told the group to “walk with him to the office.”
Dariano called his mother Diana, who spread the word to the other parents, who all arrived soon after to have a conference with Rodriguez and Principal Nick Boden. The group said they were not instigating anything and did what they always do at break – sit and talk and eat.
A parent of two Live Oak students, Teresa Casillas, said the American-flag wearing students were yelling “We live in America!” at the brunch break. She said her children were upset by their behavior at school, calling it disrespectful.
“We’re all offended by it,” Casillas said. She said parents of all ethnicities she spoke with felt that way. “Morgan Hill is too small of a community to start any racial wars. This is just bringing it out a little bit more.”
The boys were told they must turn their T-shirts inside-out or be sent home – and that it would not be considered a suspension – but that Rodriguez did not want any fights to break out among Mexican-American students and those wearing American flags. Dariano said other students were wearing American flags but since they were a group of five “we were the easiest target to cause trouble” according to Rodriguez, he said.
Over at Gilroy High School, Mexican and American patriotic colors commingled peacefully Wednesday, Principal Marco Sanchez said.
“Kids were in good spirits,” he said. “I was out on campus most of the day and didn’t see anything that was abnormal.”
He reported no disciplinary issues as a result of Mexican or American patriotism. Plenty of students donned both both countries’ national colors but none were sent home for wearing green, red, white, blue or any combination thereof, he said. Doing so would be “outrageous,” he said.
“We’re not going to be sending kids home for wearing American flags or wearing patriotic colors,” Sanchez said. “That’s discriminatory.”