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Is a school ban on American flag shirts on Cinco de Mayo constitutional?

April 30, 2014

By Jeremy Quattlebaum, Student Voices staff writer

What would happen if you wore shirt to school that administrators believe would cause trouble? You might be asked to change your shirt or turn it inside out.

But what if it’s a shirt with an American flag?

A case in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals pitted students who wore American flag T-shirts on Cinco de Mayo against the school administration, which told them to turn their shirts inside out or go home.

It all goes back to May 5, 2010, Cinco de Mayo. Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, Calif., was having a Mexican heritage celebration, and several students decided to wear American flag shirts.

School administrators said they believed that the students were trying to antagonize the Latino students and worried that the shirts could incite violence that day. School officials asked that the students cover the flag on their shirts or go home.

The students sued the school, saying their First Amendment right to free expression had been violated. The students and their families told newspapers after the incident that they were not trying to incite violence, but were showing their patriotism on a day that the school celebrated the heritage of another country.

“This is the United States of America,” Kendall Jones told the Mercury News. Jones’ son, Daniel Galli, was one of the students sent home. “The idea that it’s offensive to wear patriotic clothing ... regardless of what day it is, is unconscionable to me.”

Administrators had said that the school had a history of gang-related racial violence on Cinco de Mayo and that the threat of violence warranted action on the American flag shirts. They said the American flag shirts were banned only on Cinco de Mayo.

The case has been called another Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District. The issue of balancing public safety in school and students’ First Amendment right to free speech is central to both cases.

In the 1969 Tinker case, the Supreme Court ruled that the black armbands with the peace sign worn by student protesters were protected symbolic speech. Administrators in Tinker also had said they feared the armbands would disrupt the school. The court ruled that the protest did not distract from the educational process and that the school did not prove that the armbands would have caused a disturbance.

In the Cinco de Mayo case, however, the appeals court said the school officials had legitimate safety concerns and were justified in their actions. The unanimous ruling said the school did not violate the students’ First Amendment rights.

“The controversy and tension remained,” the three-judge panel said in its opinion, “but the school’s actions presciently avoided an altercation.”

“Our role is not to second-guess the decision to have a Cinco de Mayo celebration or the precautions put in place to avoid violence,” Judge M. Margaret McKeown wrote. The past events “made it reasonable for school officials to proceed as though the threat of a potentially violent disturbance was real.”

Update: March 31, 2015 
The Supreme Court denied an appeal from the students who were ordered to turn their American flag T-shirts inside out. The justices did not comment on why they left in place the appellate ruling that found that school officials acted appropriately.


What do you think?

Do you agree with the court’s ruling? How does a school balance its concerns for public safety with students’ free speech rights? Which is more important? Did the school act within its bounds when it told students to cover the flags? Should the fact that the shirts had the American flag have any impact on the ruling? Join the discussion and let us know what you think!
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Comments
9/22/2017
Sidney Montana
Tia
Berkopec
I feel like they purposely wore american flag shirts but i do not agree that they should bane it

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Lauren
Mr Faulhaber/Sidney High
In this case of students not being to wear their shirts during cinco de mayo i completely disagree with. to be honest im sure some of them did it to be hurtful but its a little ridiculous that some people aren't allowed to display our nations flag anytime they want just to protect someones feelings. but i do have to say that i do agree with the courts decision just because i believe that the school does have the right to contradict what we wear weather we like it or not.

9/18/2017
Sidney/MT
Kade
Mr. Faulhaber
I agree with 100% of what Jarod said. I think they should just deal with it or look away if it is offensive to you.

9/18/2017
sidney/montana
Leonard
Mr. Faulhaber/sidney high school
Students should be allowed to wear showing the flag even if the school is celebrating Cinco de Mayo. It is the unpopular speech of the flag on Cinco de Mayo so no it cannot be banned from schools on Cinco de Mayo because shows how others feel.

9/18/2017
sidney
jason
mr.faulhaber
I think its very wrong for the school to do such a thing as send A KID HOME JUST BECAUSE HE OR SHE has a flag on there shirt

9/18/2017
Sidney/Motana
isak
mr.Faulhaber
I feel that the court ruling on wearing the American flag was fair. For the reasons that they were to make Mexican and other students mad. The school had the right to have them remove the shirts. The school also have the right to make changes to help them run smother.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Patrick Prince
Mr. Faulhaber/SHS
I agree with the Supreme Court for banning the American Flag on Cinco de Mayo. It a fended people that were Mexicans celebrating there heritage.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT.
Coy
Mr. Faulhaber / Sidney High School
What a curious situation. It is understandable why the school administration chose the course of action it did for fear of inciting violence, but the question of whether there would have been violence remains. In this instance, the limitation set forth by the administration on freedom of expression functions as a hecklers veto in which the fear of potential violence is used as grounds for denying such expression. I do not believe such a veto is permissible in this instance, though the administration is granted restricted parental stature, for there was little guarantee of violence being inspired. In addition, it is interesting to note the Cinco de Mayo celebration was hosted by the school, so is the school partially responsible for creating a situation in which such a confrontation could occur?

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Conner
Mr. Faulhaber, Sidney High School
I disagree with court ruling, because of the similar topic of giving away rights due to threats. In that way, it is similar to terrorism, but obviously not to that extent. We shouldn't have to give up important rights, unnecessarily due to a threat of violence. If we give in on small issues, what stops us from giving up on larger issues, even if this is just for a school environment? I don't believe it should have to be balanced if the consequences are clear concerning acting on the threat of violence and that threat of violence is addressed beforehand. If the students decide to resort to violence for this act, it should come with consequences. The people wearing the shirts do know the potential consequences of wearing the shirts, so it is up to them in the end if they wear it or not. Free speech is always more important than feelings in my opinion, even at the expense of safety, which it doesn't even have to be that way. I mentioned feelings because that is the reason safety is an issue. The flags help the case considering it shouldn't be bad to wear them in practically all circumstances. They are irrelevant besides that.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Torey
Mr. Faulhaber
I do not agree with the decision of the court. Just because the school was having celebration of Cinco de Mayo does not mean that all the students were taking part in the celebration. The school said that the students that wore the American flag shirts were trying to antagonize the Latino students, but I think the students were just trying to express their patriotism because they don’t celebrate Cinco de Mayo.

9/18/2017
Sidney/MT
Chase
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I do not agree with the court’s ruling. I do not think that this ruling follows precedence in any form. Public safety is important, however, wearing an American flag shirt during Cinco de Mayo should not offend anyone, we are Americans in America, no matter if the students are Latinos. In my opinion, free speech is more important in this specific case than the public safety. No, the school did not act within its bounds by telling the students to cover the flags. That is outright ridiculous, showing patriotism should never be “not allowed”. It is just a shirt with an American flag, this should not have even been a case that made the courts.

9/18/2017
Sidney Montana
Kyle D.
Mr. Faulhaber
I feel that you should be able to wear an American flag shirt if you so choose. It is the nation’s symbol and citizens should be proud of it. It shouldn’t matter what significant event happened that day. You shouldn’t have to change your shirt, if it offends people then they can deal with it. The school should only be able to govern you by what the handbook says. And if the school sends you home for it, then it shouldn’t count against you. It is the schools decision to send you home not yours.

9/18/2017
Sidney High School
Kolby
Mr. Faulhaber
I do not think the students should have to take off their American flag shirts. First, because the school is in The United States of America and the flag that was on their shirts was the American flag. Also, the flag represents our pride, and kids wearing a shirt with the American flag on it just shows pride.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Mt
Alec L
Mr. Faulhaber/SidneyHS
I disagree with the court ruling. I think it should be perfectly fine to wear an American flag shirt any day of the year. The flag represents this great country and those who have fought for it as well. Maybe in some other country you could ban wearing the shirts on Cinco de Mayo, but not in America. What you wear can be symbolic speech and is protected.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Joe
Mr. Faulhaber / Sidney High School
I disagree with the court ruling. The American flag should never be banned in America. If showing the American flag causes violence, then blame the people who started the violence, not the people showing their patriotism.

9/18/2017
Sidney Mt
Sawyor
Mr. Faulhaber
I think the court got it wrong. You should be able to wear the American flag on your shirt at school. If it causes violence then the school should do something about it.

9/18/2017
Sidney MT
Cody Davis
Mr.faulhaber/SHS
I believe that the court made the wrong decision based on the fact that they allowed the staff to enforce the students to cover up the UNITED STATES FLAG. I think that is disrespectful for our country as a whole.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Randy
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
We might not want to agree with this, but if the school thought this would incite violence then they could have the students change their shirts or turn them inside out. If the shirts were only banned on Cinco de Mayo then wear the shirts a different day it really shouldn't be a big deal.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Mt
Max Peters
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I think that the student should not have to cover or go home because of whats on there shirt. They have the right to where what they want as long as its school appropriate. And what was on there shirt was school appropriate and not bothering anyone.

9/18/2017
Sidney
Ally
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I agree with the ruling. The school was right to make them turn their shirts inside out because of the fear of altercations. Those students could've worn those shirts on any other day but they chose Cinco de Mayo. Sounds pretty sketch to me.

9/18/2017
Sidney Ma
Tyler
Mr. Faulhaber
I don't agree with the court ruling, since it was Cinco De Mayo. If I was a judge and it were up to me I wouldn't care of what you were wearing on Cinco De Mayo. To me that flag represents hope to our people saying that we can overcome the impossible even it means sacrificing our life to make that dream come a reality. All the students wanted to do was to celebrate their patriotism along with Mexico.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Benjamin Stevens
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
It seems quite unnecessary for the school officials to try and restrict patriotism in the school during Cinco de Mayo. It is a simple holiday and it seems unlikely and more or less unreasonable for people to get upset from others who intentionally or unintentionally wear patriotic clothing to school. They are in the United States and it should be okay to show support for your country no matter what day it is. It makes sense to prevent violence, but that depends on if violence occurs.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Hunter Sheehan
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I agree with the court’s ruling. If there was history of racial violence on Cinco de Mayo, they were trying to protect the students. American flag shirts were only banned for that day, they had could’ve wore the shirts another day. The students most likely wanted to cause the Latinos to become hostile.

9/18/2017
Sidney/MT
Danielle
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I believe that students should be allowed to wear their flag t-shirts because they are not disrupting anything going on at school. They are just wearing t-shirts. No nudity. No inappropriate language. Just the American flag. It may be a little racist because they’re intentionally wearing the shirts on Cinco de Mayo and probably have the intentions of intimidating other students, but no physical harm was caused.

9/18/2017
Sidney - MT
Layne Swigart
Mr. Faulhaber - Sidney High School
I do not agree with the courts ruling. I do not believe they can make wearing an American shirt "illegal" on one certain day just because a school is celebrating Cinco de Mayo. The school did not act within its bounds as they were favoring the Latinos in the situation.

9/18/2017
Sidney MT
Jordan J
Mr. Faulhaber
I disagree with what the court decided. I understand the school was trying to protect violence from happening but it violated the first amendment the kid was being patriotic he is proud to be an American and was representing his country. I think the school did not have the right to tell him to turn his shirt inside out. A student should be able to represent what he wants they wouldn’t have said anything if one of the other races of kids wore the Mexican flag shirt on our flag day.

9/18/2017
Sidney/ Montana
Ben Brodhead
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I believe that we all have the right to express what we believe in. If one wants to wear an American flag shirts and we are American I believe we have the right to do so. If one chooses to not celebrate Cinco de Mayo because they are not Mexican then I think it is appropriate to show your own heritage views. If one doesn’t like what your shirt says then they should just turn a cheek and not look at what they don’t like. We are all living in America! I believe that all students have the right to free speech if they go about it in an un-harmful way.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Xander
Mr. Faulhaber SHS
I strongly disagree with the courts ruling. I would say that it violates the 1st Amendment. If we cannot ban the Nazi flag the Communist flag and any unpopular flag why ban the American flag in America. Even on another countries holiday.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Halie Knight
Mr. Faulhaber
I agree with the court’s ruling. Although you have a right to display your patriotism the school was trying to use precautions so there wasn’t any violence that may occur; like there was previous years. Even if the kids said they did not mean to inflict harm it is ironic how several of them decided to wear the American flag on their shirts on that exact day.

9/18/2017
Sidney/ Montana
Emily Skogen
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney Public Schools
I believe that the student should be able to wear an American flag shirt whenever he wants to. A holiday should not sway the student from having his 1st Amendment right. I understand the school was trying to avoid violence, but what would happen if a Mexican-American were to wear a Mexican flag shirt on the 4th of July. Would he have to be asked to change his shirt?

9/18/2017
sidney/montana
skylar
Mr faulhaber/sidney high school
I think that telling someone that they cannot wear something that symbolizes there country is unconstitutional. They have a right to wear the American flag it was not against dress code it was showing they love our country.

9/18/2017
Sidney Montana
John
Mr. Faulhaber Sidney High School
This is a violation of the First Amendment. The school assumed that because there was a certain shirt worn that there would be incitement to violence. The shirts with the American flags on them were nothing but a showing of patriotism.

9/18/2017
sidney/ montana
jacob
Mr. faulhaber/ sidney high school
I do not agree with the court's ruling. I believe that the students should be allowed to wear the shirts. Only until violence occurs on Cinco de Mayo should the students be punished.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Jade
Mr. Faulhaber Sidney High School
You should be able to wear whatever you want whenever you want and not be bothered. The Latino kids are the problem if a shirt antagonizes them.

9/18/2017
sidney/ montana
jacob
Mr. faulhaber/ sidney high school
I do not agree with the court's ruling. I believe that the students should be allowed to wear the shirts. Only until violence occurs on Cinco de Mayo should the students be punished.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Jaden
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney high school
I think that if the Supreme Court says that it is lawful to ask students not to wear an American Flag t-shirt on Cinco de Mayo, then it has to be okay. Many people may not agree with this but if it is lawful then it has to be accepted.

9/18/2017
Sidney
Beau Partridge
Mr.Faulhaber Sidney Highschool
I rule with the Court. It’s Cinco de Mayo, where Mexicans celebrate their day. Yes, honestly I don’t think it should matter if the kids wore American flag shirts, but out of respect to the culture day.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Kaelyn
Mr. Faulhaber
I do agree with the ruling. If there is a real concern for public safety then the right to free speech is not absolute. Public safety is more important than the right to free speech. The school did the right thing by telling them to cover the flags. The fact the shirts had an American flag should not have any impact on the ruling.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Blake
Mr. Faulhaber
I feel that banning shirts with an American flag on it for one day would be understandable given the right circumstances. In this school, there is a history of gang violence on Cinco de Mayo. Thus giving the school administration a reason to worry about students wearing certain shirts. I agree with the outcome of the case because if there’s been a history of violence on a given day, making everything go as smoothly as possible throughout the day would be important.

9/18/2017
Sidney Montana
Ashton
Mr.Faulhaber Sidney High School
I do not agree with the Supreme Court’s decision. I feel that as a representation of our country and the men who died for It we need to let the flag be worn no matter what day it is and no matter whose country is being celebrated. If I were a judge I would’ve said that the case is a waste of time and that in America we should be able to where and be proud to where our American flag any time any day any celebration we want.

9/18/2017
Sidney/MT
Lina Langwald
Mr.Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I don't think it was right for the school to tell those students that they can't wear a shirt with an American flag just because it’s a Mexican holiday. The school shouldn’t be able to limit the students’ freedom of expression by not allowing them to wear a shirt with an American flag on certain days of the year. I can see why the school thought it would be best to not allow those students to wear shirts with the American flag. The school was just trying to prevent violence at their school, and with the school’s history of violence on Cinco de Mayo it’s understandable why they would ban shirts with the American flag on Cinco de Mayo. However, it is still a violation of the students’ rights.

9/18/2017
Sidney/ Montana
Aarica
Mr. Faulhaber
The school does have the right to ban American flag one day a year. Though they stated that it has caused violence in the past, they are trying to use heckler's veto. If students are wearing the flag on Cinco de Mayo, but not the rest of the year, then it should be clear that their motives are to aggravate other students. Think about the only times you see people wearing the American flag. People don’t wear the flag all the time for pride in their country, they only wear it on patriotic holidays or in this case to disrespect students celebrating their heritage. Students have limited rights in schools. If schools can have uniforms and dress code then they have the right to ban something that could and has caused violence.

9/18/2017
Sidney, Montana
Ariana
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
After reading the article I actually ended up agreeing with the court’s ruling. I feel like if it had taken place in a different state it could have had a different ruling, but California has a very large Latino population and it could have sparked something between the students. The school was just looking out for everyone’s best interest and had every right to.

9/18/2017
Sidney Montata
Dalton
Mr. Faulhabar
We live in the United States of America if you want to wear a shirt that has the flag on it. You should be able to wear it in school. Even if it Cinco de Mayo.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Ryan Horner
Mr.Faulhaber/SHS
I do not agree with the court’s ruling on the matter. The students were just showing their patriotism to their country. If the shirts worn by the students would incite violence from others than are the shirts really the problem should we not be looking at the students looking to incite violence? In my opinion a shirt is not hurtful/hateful enough to incite violence. I believe that the school overstepped in the fact that because some people didn’t agree with these teens they silenced them.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Peyton
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
As long as it doesn't break rules set by the school or distracted from learning, students have rights to freedom of speech. Wearing an American flag shirt shows patriotism which is something this country needs more of. Mexicans have a right to celebrate their independence, but they don't hold control over others while doing so.

9/18/2017
Sidney
Jace
Mr. Faulhaber
In my opinion the court got it wrong in this situation. Although there has been violence in the past with kids wearing American t-shirts on Cinco de Mayo, there is no immediate danger and there’s no proof that they were planning to incite violence or disrupt the school. I also believe that in America you should be able to wear American apparel anytime you want. Although they are celebrating Cinco de Mayo, we live in America so why are we not allowed to wear American things because of another country’s holiday?

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Garrison
Mr. Faulhaber/SHS
I, personally, am not a fan of the court’s decision. But if it Is the law, then it should be obeyed. I just don’t think that the country’s own symbol or flag should be banned to accommodate the views of a different culture. If that group of people wants to celebrate their own heritage than they should be able to, but no flag should be banned. Banning your own country’s flag at a school just sounds ridiculous.

9/18/2017
Sidney/Montana
Katie W
SHS Faulhaber
I completely agree with the court’s decision. I feel the school already limits students’ rights, and I understand that it was Cinco de Mayo when these students wore these shirts but if they are not from that country why should they have to celebrate it and why not wear your flag shirt on a day while they are celebrating a foreign Holliday in your country. Student’s rights of freedom and student safety if very unbalanced here. I feel if your students are trying to fight each other over a shirt, your administration has a problem. Telling a student to either go home or wear your shirt inside out is completely ridiculous. That is the school pretty much saying what you’re wearing is a distraction from your education. The fact that the shirts had American flags on them should not matter at all.

9/18/2017
Sidney, MT
Josie Langwald
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I don't think the school should be able to ban American flag shirts even if it is Cinco de Mayo. If the students want to wear American flag shirts they should be able to because they aren't trying to incite violence.

9/15/2017
Sidney
Abby
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I do not agree with the court ruling, just because they were celebrating Cinco de Mayo? If I was the judge I would have said that it doesn't matter what people wear even if its an American flag. I mean seriously. That flag represents the people who fought for OUR country. I really could careless if they wore an American shirt to a Cinco de Mayo celebration. Maybe they wanted to represent their country as well as Cinco de Mayo. But I definitely disagree with the court ruling because its a waste of time.

9/15/2017
sidney montana
jarod
mRS. Faulhaber
the real question is what has america come to? we are banned from showing our patriotism in AMERICA on another ethnicity holiday what the heck, if it offends them, tell them to skip school that day and celebrate at home because america thrives on patriotism and we arent changing

9/15/2017
Sidney/MT
Tesa
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I agree with Holly. Students should not be asked to change their clothes because of the American flag on it.

9/15/2017
Sidney, MT
Chase
Mrs. Faulhaber-Sidney High School
If the Supreme Court says its lawful then it must be. I may not agree with it but lawfully they are allowed to stop them from wearing the shirt on that holiday

9/15/2017
Sidney MT
Waylon
Mr. Faulhaber
The court got it wrong. Wearing the American Flag in a school in America should be allowed regardless of the celebration taking place. To say that wearing the nations flag would incite violence is absurd. I do not believe that the school was within its bounds because the values of all students were not taken into consideration.

9/15/2017
Sidney High School
Morgan
Faulhaber
I believe that keeping the safety of students and teachers comes first, even if it could be considered as preventing their freedom of speech. In this case, I do not feel as if it was disrupting their learning in school. So in this case they should be allowed to show their symbolic speech.

9/15/2017
Sidney, MT
Trenton
Mrs. Faulhaber
Schools should not be able to tell you you can't wear the symbol of your country! Holiday or not the American flag is a symbol of all of the men and women who died protecting these peoples right to try and tell someone they can not wear that shirt. The flag also symbolizes this persons 1st amendment right to wear and be proud that shirt and his country.

9/15/2017
Sidney MT
Jordan
Mr. Faulhaber
i believe the students should have been allowed to continue wearing their shirts. i dont believe that these actions would directly incite violence. if we have to pledge our allegiance to the flag every morning then why cant we wear the flag if we want to show support?

9/15/2017
Sidney, MT
Alexis Smith
Mrs. Fallhaber
I agree with the courts ruling. The school was trying to prevent violence so they weren't violating anything at all. A school is a government building anyways. You can wear pretty much whatever you want as long as it follows school dress code. You have the right to show who you are by what you wear.

9/15/2017
Sidney
Lauryn
Mr. Faulhaber
Although you have a right to freedom of speech (both spoken and symbolic) the school had reason to believe that wearing an American flag shirt on Cinco de Mayo would incite violence. Although the students said they weren't antagonizing the Latino students, in past years there has been gang related violence on Cinco de Mayo so the school was trying to prevent it this year. However, they had a right to wear the shirts if there was no rule in the handbook about it.

9/15/2017
Sidney/Montana
Jesse Johnson
Mrs. Faulhaber
If the students actions and clothes incited violence I see why they told the students to change. It is a American Flag shirt but if anything provokes violence it is the schools responsibility to stop it or prevent it. The students should be able to wear whatever they want but if it incites violence then I understand why.

9/15/2017
Sidney, MT
Sandra
Faulhaber, SHS
I believe that the school did not violate the kids’ first amendment rights. I say this because the school was trying to prevent violence from occurring. Even though the kids’ motives wasn’t to patronize the Latinos, the Latinos could take it the wrong way. This could lead to potential harm to the students and disorganization within the school.

9/15/2017
Sidney/Montana
Holly
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
Students have rights to freedom of speech, whether it is symbolic or not, as long as it is not infringing on the rules, learning, or reputation of the school. Students or citizens in general should not be ashamed to show their loyalty and patriotism to their country, religion, or heritage. There is nothing wrong with expressing your patriotism and heritage, especially in the country of origin. If you are not of Mexican heritage, and there is celebration of this day, there is nothing wrong with showing your personal heritage. If students are not being disrespectful towards anyone, then there should be no issue.

9/15/2017
Sidney/Montana
Kiana Uran
Mr. Faulhaber
I agree with the court’s ruling. The school made a good choice to make them change their shirts, so they didn’t make violence. The school did say that they had violence years before so they are just taking precautions. The students could have worn the flag any other day but they choose Cinco de Mayo. It just feels fishy to me. It just seems to me that they were wanting to cause a riot.

9/15/2017
Sidney/MT
Ty
Mr.faullhaber
i don't think this should be a problem in the first place. we live in america as an american we can wear whatever we want especially if its the american flag. Its our right to support america whenever we want.

9/15/2017
Sidney, Montana
Katie
Mr. Faulhaber
I disagree with the Supreme Court. But I understand how they were more concerned for the public and not the students rights. The public's safety is more important.

9/15/2017
Sidney/Montana
Ethan
Faulhaber/Sidney
I do not agree with the court's ruling. I believe that the students should be allowed to wear the shirts. Only until violence occurs on Cinco de Mayo should the students be punished. The school acted out of its boundaries when it issued a prior restraint on the students wearing United States' Flag shirts as there is no guarantee that violence will occur. I have made my decision based on the precedent set by the National Socialist Party of America v. Village of Skokie case. In which, it was decided that the government (or any entities of the government) are not allowed to restrict the rights of anyone because they believe violence will occur.

9/15/2017
Sidney/montana
shawn
Mr. Fauhaber/ sidney high school
I think if you want to wear an american flag shirt or anything with american flag you should be able to. You have the right to wear it at school because it isn't saying anything with drugs or alcohol. If it had something with alcohol or drugs on it then i would say no to wearing it in the school but if all it is the american flag i don't see any problem with that.

9/15/2017
Sidney Montana
Christopher O.
Mr.Faulhaber SHS
I Think that if the school wants to ban the shirt for one day a year because it might cause trouble they should ban it all year round. I dont think that wearing an american flag shirt should be banned because what if a student wore a shirt that said USA on it it would also cause trouble. There for how can they ban the wearing of patriotic clothing on Cinco de Mayo

9/15/2017
Sidney/mt
Avery
Mr. Faulhaber
The students should have the same rights as the Latino students. If the Latino supporters also had to take off their shirts then that’s fair. They should not be forced to celebrate anything that they don’t believe in. on the same note, would the Latino students find saying the American pledge of allegiance at an American school.

9/15/2017
Sidney, MT
Kaitlin Michael
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I believe that students should not have had to change their shirts. I do not believe that wearing an American Flag is going to offend someone, yeah it is a Mexican holiday, but it is not a U.S. holiday. Unless it caused violence to occur, I think the students had the right to wear a flag that represents their country on what ever day they want without feeling like they are offending someone.

9/15/2017
Sidney/Montana
Kelly
Mr. Faulhaber
I don't agree with the courts ruling. The school should not be able to restrict students from wearing the American Flag, a patriotic symbol, on any day for any reason. The school had no reason to believe that there was going to be any violence. Everyone should have the right to wear the American Flag.

9/15/2017
Sidney/MT
AJ Fox
Mr. Faulhaber
I don't think the students should have had to change. Would it be different if a school in Mexico was celebrating July 4th and students wore a Mexican flag? The students were simply showing patriotism.

5/25/2017
bloomsburg/PA
ashley
Mr.Davis/Bloomsburg High School
I Agree with Renzo from Creekside HS. i think you should be allowed to wear any patriotic item for the country you are living in without having to feel you are offending immigrants.

5/16/2017
Magnolia, Texas
Logan
Metzger, Magnolia West
After reading a learning about both sides of the discussion, I found myself actually changing my original thought. Although this this America and we do have our list of many rights, including freedom of expression, there are certain situations where our rights must be limited. I do agree that the students have their rights, but in the final conclusion , I sided with the school board and staff. The case states that the children were in danger of potential danger, that had shown itself in previous years. Whether the teachers believed they should remove the shirts or not, it's their obligation and liability to keep the students in the safest conditions possible. They were doing their job, as they should. It had nothing to do with the initial day, but more to do with the fact the students could have been at risk of unnecessary and preventable acts of violence.

5/10/2017
Bloomsburg/ PA
Jake
Mr. Davis
I agree with Quinn, I do not think they should be able to were the shirts because it would cause a disturbance. Also it is in a school so students rights aren't the same as when not in school.

5/4/2017
Bloomsburg
Corinne Hildreth
Mr. Davis Bloomsburg High School
I agree with Corrine, this is America, not Mexico. It shouldn't be mandatory to celebrate a country that you're not from or live in. If they want to show THEIR countries pride, then let them. It's just a flag, not a protest or a riot. They're showing their pride, and if nobody likes it, then walk away, this isn't Mexico.

5/4/2017
Bloomsburg Pennsylvania
Braydon
Mr davis
To Elizabeth I agree with you, if they are trying to make them mad then that is wrong.

5/4/2017
Bloomsburg, PA
Jaclyn
J. Davis / Bloomsburg High School
Corrine from Creekside High School, I completely agree with you on it not being constitutional. I also believe people are entitled to their opinions and should be allowed to wear the shirts of the country they are proud to be from or a part of. And even though we are in America - I think anyone should be able to proudly wear the shirt of whatever country they love.

5/4/2017
PA
James
Bloomsburg High School
Dazejah I disagree with you on this issue and think that it does violate their First Amendment right as an American as they should be allowed to wear whatever shirt they want to to an extent with swear words and gang related things. I think that it is perfectly okay with someone showing pride in their country and wearing an American flag t-shirt.

3/29/2017
Midlothian, Virginia
Dazejah
Zaval/Midlothian Middle School
I believe that while it is a Mexican holiday, it should be incouraged to not wear American flag shirts on Cinco de Mayo. If the administrators fear that the shirts could provoke violence, precautions should be made to stop this fear. While fully banning it does violate the First Amendment, it is offensive to wear it on a day of patriotism for another country, that so greatly inhabits our country.

5/2/2016
Murrieta, CA
Renzo
Jabro, Creekside HS
I think it is sad to see where this nation has come to. Just because a U.S. flag may offend someone, It is still the national symbol of the land you are standing on. Cinco De Mayo is not a U.S. holiday, it is a mexican one. What if I had no relation to mexico, then do I still have to participate. That seems entirely wrong. It is a violation of freedom of speech to punish someone for objecting an event, unless they have truly causes a crime. Enticing arguments is not necessarily a crime. The students were brave for standing up for their nation and its flag.

3/17/2016
Bloomsburg
Alan Kapp
Mr. Davis
i believe that the students do not have the right to wear an american flag shirt on Cinco de mayo day. The school has the right to tell them they cant wear it because they are trying to protect the students from getting hurt and causing fights. They school doesn't want any fights to break out over kids wearing american flag shirt on cinco de mayo day because they have had fights before. So the school isn't breakikng ant freedom of rights of the students.

3/14/2016
bloomsburg, PA
Jess
Jerry Davis/Bloomsburg HS
The students should have the right to wear their shirts. Cinco de Mayo isn't even a national holiday, it's a Mexican holiday that they are celebrating in america. If Hispanics can show their Mexican patriotism in America, Americans should be allowed the same right.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg,Pennsylvania
Isiah
Mr.Davis, Bloomsburg area high schooll
I find this very wrong for not allowing them to not wear there own country's flag on a shirt and making them take the shirt and putting it inside out for a holiday that many of them do not probably celebrate. I could understand if it was showing drugs or if the clothing was to revealing but it is showing there pride for ones country to me this is very wrong.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg, PA
Sean
Mr. Davis/Bloomsburg High School
I don't fully agree with the ruling. The shirts were not disruptive and were not antagonizing others. All they did was wear shirts of the flag to show their love for their country. Would it be the same or different if a student wore a flag from another country? The students should have won this case.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg PA
Lake
Mr. Davis
From the precedent of tinker vs de moine, these shirts worn on cinco de mayo caused a disruption in the school because they were wearing them to incite violence between them and the Latino students. The school had the right to tell the students to cover their shirts or go home. It doesn't matter if the shirts had an American flag on them, they caused a disruption.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg/Pa
Colby
Mr.Davis/ Bloomsburg
I think it doesn't matter what day it is you should still beable to support our country. Be who you want to be. Wear what you want. It doesn't matter what you wear. They might have done it to be funny ,but its our country. Just showing patriotism

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg PA
Pete Noore
Mr. Davis
I disagree with the courts ruling. It is stupid that students can't wear a shirt with the american flag. Students free speech rights are important. The school abused their authority the students weren't wearing anything offensive it's the american flag it's displayed in every classroom in the school. Students have the right to patriotic and should be proud of their country.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg
Zahier
Jerry Davis
Yes i do think that this was alright because the students were trying to invoke violence because the school had a history of violence when it comes to that

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg/Pennsylvania
Kaitlin
Jerry Davis
I disagree with the decision. I think they should be allowed to, because it wasn't bothering anyone, just like how in the Tinker case their armbands weren't bothering anyone. I dont think that the school should be allowed to tell a student what they can and cannot wear. But I think that the fact it was the American flag especially shouldnt have gotten them in trouble.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg/Pennsylvania
Kaitlin
Jerry Davis
I disagree with the decision. I think they should be allowed to, because it wasn't bothering anyone, just like how in the Tinker case their armbands weren't bothering anyone. I dont think that the school should be allowed to tell a student what they can and cannot wear. But I think that the fact it was the American flag especially shouldnt have gotten them in trouble.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg, PA
Tyson
Jerry Davis/Bloomsburg Area High School
The students should be aloud to wear a t shirt with a flag of their own country any day no matter what. If it is a big safety concern then why even celebrate cinco de mayo? We live in America, not Mexico.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg
alexis
Jerry Davis
I think it is okay that the school banned american flag shirts on cinco de mayo. The students can support their fellow class mates by just not wearing that shirt for one day. I think its just a respect thing. We would be offended if a Mexican student wore a Mexican flag on July 4th so we should give the same respect. i dont think the school should have to make it a rule though i think the students should just be kind and thoughtful of others.

3/14/2016
Bloomsburg PA
Lake
Mr. Davis
From the precedent of tinker vs de moine, these shirts worn on cinco de mayo caused a disruption in the school because they were wearing them to incite violence between them and the Latino students. The school had the right to tell the students to cover their shirts or go home. It doesn't matter if the shirts had an American flag on them, they caused a disruption.

1/5/2016
Sidney, Montana
Tayler F.
Mr. Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I agree with the court's ruling. Live Oak High School didn't want anyone to get hurt, as there is a history of violence on Cinco de Mayo. Schools can limit student rights, and this is a reason to.

1/5/2016
Sidney MT
Nick
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
Every school has a dress code. The requirements and standards of these dress codes grossly differ, though. At my school, you cannot wear shorts/skirts/dresses more than 3 inches above your knee, and you cannot wear clothing referencing drugs or inappropriate slang. These rules are for good measure and appropriateness. But not being able to advertise your American pride? Being unable to show your patriotism? How is that appropriate? How is that for good measure? This is America. We are known for our patriotism, American pride and love for our country. If we can't show it, then how do we know it is still there? If we can't express our love for our country because it's "insensitive" to another culture, then is it even our country? Is it even America? And why is it that other people from other countries can express their love for their own country in our country but we cant express our love for our country when we live in AMERICA.

12/9/2015
Diamond Bar, CA
BrianP5
Wong/Lorbeer
The students at Live Oak High School are able to wear whatever they want. Telling them to turn their shirts inside out or to go home does violate their First Amendment right to free speech and expression. The First Amendment states,"Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech..." which Live Oak High has clearly violated. Everyone should be able to express whatever they want, and expressing the American flag does not bother anyone. At Live Oak, the school said that they have had gang-related racial violence before, but violence can happen any time. Therefore, there is a possibility of racial violence hapening everyday, not just on Cinco de Mayo.

12/4/2015
Watertown, MA
Amin Touri
Rimas/Watertown High
Banning American flag shirts, under any circumstance, is ridiculous. What you're suggesting, by forcing them to either go home or hide the flag, is that you are more concerned about the freedom of expression of the Latino students than you are about the students wearing their flag shirts. Were those kids being antagonistic on purpose? Maybe. Does it matter? Absolutely not. You can't pick and choose what is or isn't okay, playing favorites with the first amendment. If they get upset because kids wear American flag shirts, that's on them. If they get violent, that's on them. You absolutely cannot suppress someone's freedom of expression in that manner, regardless of intent.

12/4/2015
Watertown, MA
Edmundo Villa-Pérez
Rimas/Watertown High School
I agree with the courts ruling, as although Cinco de Mayo is technically a Mexican holiday, it is not even a national holiday, being celebrated only at the state level in Puebla and Veracruz. In fact, it is more widely celebrated in the United States than it is in México. The school had reasonable cause to send the students home, as there was a history of gang violence on Cinco de Mayo and decided not to risk something happening. Also, it is disrespectful to wear the American flag on clothing.

12/4/2015
Watertown Ma
Derek
Me. Rimas Watertown High School
I believe that there should never be a problem with someone holding or wearing a sign of their country. I believe that anyone should be able to express their pride in ones country no matter the country, as long as they are only showing pride in their country and not puttin down others

11/24/2015
Sidney, Montana
Chelsey
Mr. Faulhaber Sidney High School
I think that this should not be a problem in the first place. The school shirt is a for of patriotism for the Land of the Free. Schools who worry about violence enough to ban the American flag have bigger problems to deal with. The students who may be antagonizing others should be punished. Not everyone for showing patriotism on a holiday that is not symbolic to the United States of America. Granted, some Americans support Cinco de Mayo, and it is their right, just as it is ours not to support it.

11/20/2015
Sidney, Montana
Christian Eggar
Mr.Faulhaber Sidney High School
In my opinion I do not agree that the ban was constitutional. For one thing Latinos are in America and should expect them to wear shirts showing pride in their country. Now, not saying that those kids didn’t just do it to get at the Latinos, but some might not have known that this foreign holiday was on May 5th. It is their individual right to be able to wear what they support or believe in. Take this for example you don’t get in trouble for wearing American flag shirts on a Canadian holiday, like Canada’s Thanksgiving. So in my opinion no I believe that the school did violate 1st amendment rights. So I believe that this ban was unconstitutional. Plus when was the last time a person from Latino culture got in trouble for wearing a Spanish t-shirt on Veterans Day or the 4th of July? That would be just as unconstitutional as this, Thank-You.

2/10/2015
Newport Pa
Ethan Sproull
Mr. Logue PA leadership
What?! That is prob the more biased ruling, how the the freaking U.S.A! How could this happen! We really need to go over what we consider to be "laws" and throw out crap like this!

11/20/2014
Murrieta/ California
Ziona
Jabro / Creekside High School
I very much do not agree with court's ruling. I do not think that it is constitutional. I believe everyone should be entitled to their own beliefs, opinions, and freedom to wear what they feel they should wear to show their support and beliefs.

11/14/2014
Belleville/NY
Elizabeth
Colby/Belleville Henderson
If the students were wearing American Flag shirts to purposefully antagonize Latino students, I believe they should have been punished. However, wearing a patriotic shirt simply for the purpose of being patriotic should not cause any repercussions. Punishing someone for being patriotic definitely seems unconstitutional to me. Cinco de Mayo is not a holiday celebrated by every American, and therefore should not be an excuse to prohibit American clothing. If there was proof of the antagonistic actions against Latino students, then the school was justified in punishing the flag-wearing students. However, if there was no proof, the students should have been left alone. Being Patriotic should never result in punishment.

10/30/2014
Sidney, MT
Tristan
Mr. Faulhaber, Sidney High School
I think its ridiculous. Talk about a lack of patriotism. If a kid wants to wear a shirt becuase they're proud of their country, then let them. Last time I checked, Cinco de Mayo is not an American holiday. Shame on that school.

10/16/2014
Murrieta Ca
Corrine
jabro/ creekside high school
No i think its not constitutional. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and belief. If someone dosnt like that other person is wearing a american flag shirt , they should walk away. Were in America, not Mexico.

9/10/2014
Charlottesville, VA
Scott
Mrs. Bailey / Monticello High School
I think that the school was in the wrong. Its simple really. The problem with many kids in my generation is that its gotta be about them. and its not issolated only in America. People that come here are the same way as well. I look at it like this. If i wanna wear my American flag shirt i will. and if people dont like it. well then to bad. i was here first. i dont have a problem with people. i only have a problem with ignorant people that think they need to change something cuz its not part of their religion or they dont like what we do. GOD BLESS AMERICA

8/25/2014
temecula ca
Angel
jabro creekside
Why is this even a topic? of course its right to ban them, but to an extent. Like , of course people know its cinco de mayo but really dont care whatsoever, so if they dont, then let them be. because in reality it doesnt hurt a single fly from wearing a shirt on a certain day. its stupid and creates more problems for freethinking people by inventing more problems to worry about.

8/15/2014
Murrieta CA
Lily
Mr.Jabro Creekside Highschool
Honestly,I could go on for days with this due to strong feelings about things relating to this. Cinco De mayo is a mexican holiday,NOT an American holiday. Why would we celebrate it in school anyway? To please the latino students? I don't think we should have to please anyone. We don't celebrate German holidays in school,so there is no reason to people please here. I do not agree with the courts ruling,American students should be allowed to wear an American flag T-shirt on this day regardless of what others say,because this is America. A school balances it's concerns by from it seems people pleasing. No foreign student should be offended or have the right to be offended by an American student showing pride in his own country. They came to America didn't they? So,they chose to live here which means either they tolerate it or leave. Free speech is more important by a long shot. Yes,the school acted way out of bounds with this. There is no reason one should have to cover an American flag in America. The fact they had the American flag should have an impact on ruling,because why would a public school take away a students right to show pride in their own country?

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Jacob s.
Mr. Hanna / Stroudsburg JHS
An American flag shirt should not be banned in any United States school on any day ever. Shirts do not start violence very often, once again we blame the actions of humans on non-human objects. None of the students in this case should have expected any constitutional rights because schools don't really let you have a lot of your own rights. The school probably had no concerns for freedom of speech in the first place and was really trying to keep certain groups from starting fights with other groups over their shirts. There is so much wrong with this story that the list could continue however I would have ruled it unconstitutional just as a little present for the administrative department of the United States school who decided to ban the American flag shirts.

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg/pa
Sarah I
Hanna/stroudsburg HHS
I feel that shouldn't be able to wear those t shirts because it's one day where Spanish heritage is celebrated. When American gets all these holidays. Like 4th or July and Memorial Day and it's one day a year so I think people should take so time and respect mexicos heritage

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg/PA
Natalie J
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg Jr. High
I think that students should be able to wear what they feel like wearing to school no matter the holiday. Some kids don't know when Cinco De Mayo is because they aren't really told when it is except on the day of the holiday. And if they are, it's probably a few days before and they will probably forget about it. So if a kid wants to wear a American flag shirt, they should be allowed to do so instead of being punished for wearing what they felt like wearing. It's their nations flag so it shouldn't matter if they wore a shirt that wasn't about the heritage of the holiday.

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg PA
Kyle H
Mr. Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I feel you should be able to wear an American flag shirt on any day you want. If you wear an American flag shirt it means you support the U.S.A. I don't feel it's right that the school banned them on Cinco de Mayo. It's almost like taking away your rights as an American civilian. You should be able to wear anything the supports the United States of America or the country you're from. This is America and you have the right to support your country on anyday of the year.

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Madeline R.
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
A school should not discourage kids for showing their patriotism, especially on a day that we celebrate other peoples heritage inside our very own country. Kids rights are being taken away, they are being denied the freedom of expression. On a day that Latino Americans are allowed to be proud of their heritage can other people be proud of their own country. Schools should not have this kind of authority when their only defense is they thought it might bring up acts of violence

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Shaydra
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
Yes I do because they can say whatever they want about it as long as they know what they are doing. Watch or hear the language they use so they don't get into a whole lot of trouble with Supreme Court.Yes because they didn't like it at first. No because it supports the country you are in.

6/12/2014
Stroudsburg PA/ stroudsburg JHS
Kayliegh
Mr. Hanna
I believe that students should be aloud to wear the shirt with the American flag. I think this because it is our nation and we should show it off. Kids shouldn't get in trouble for wearing their nations flag.

6/11/2014
Stroudsburg PA
Missy
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I agree with the courts ruling during Tinker v. Des Moines. It is up to the school to protect students. I believe that kids should be allowed to wear the flag shirts. They weren't trying to do anything wrong. They were just showing their nationality. If a student wore a type of clothing that would be a serious threat, then yes that is wrong and something should be done about it, but wearing an American flag on your shirt on Cinco de Mayo is not threatening at all. The school had no right to tell them to cover the flag. It's just like saying the Pledge of Allegiance shouldn't be said on Cinco de Mayo. Students should have the right to show their patriotism.

6/11/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Dillon P.
Mr. Hanna/ Stroudsburg JHS
I believe that the students should be allowed to wear the shirt with the flag on it. They are just trying to be patriotic. I never knew that patriotism was illegal. The students were not trying to cause trouble.

6/2/2014
Irving/Texas
Janet
Bradley/Nimitz
I do agree with the courts ruling during Tinker v. Des Moines. It is the school's role to protect the students from any possible danger, however, I believe that students should have the right to wear clothing that displays their support for something. There are certain cases in which protecting the public is more important. For example, if a student wore something that was obscene and posed as a dangerous threat then the school administrators should send the kid home to change. However, in this specific case of American flag shirts worn on Cinco De Mayo, the ruling in favor of the students could have to do with the fact that the students were just displaying their patriotism.

6/2/2014
Irving/TX
Vivian
Bradley/Nimitz
Although every citizen is granted with rights from amendments in the Constitution, if rules of safety is being violated in an institution that is what must come first. In this case I do agree with the court's ruling on a consequences with the students causing a distraction and possible violence. If students could take the time and realize how their very own school system of rules works they would begin to realize that their school limits their privileges to a certain extent. And they only do this to run their education environment with safety. Therefore there has to be a winner on which right is more important. Live Oak High School made a valid move for their own students to avoid skirmish that has a problem within the school already. The fact that the distraction the students chose was a symbol of patriotism of America makes it more controversial but should not be the main factor of this case.

6/1/2014
Irving/Texas
Lacie
Bradley/Nimitz
I believe that the students had every constitutional right to wear their American flag shirts that day. They have a first amendment right to wear American flag shirts on any given day at school. But, when it comes to an administrator of a school having to decide between allowing his students to express their first amendment rights or preventing a potential dangerous and violent situation for the students, any person in charge would choose to keep his/her students safe. Because ultimately that is more important. If students are going to wine and cry about not getting to wear a t-shirt one day out of the whole year for only 4 years of their lives, then they are babies. Simple as that. Babies who want to fuss and pout when they don’t get their way. There is so much more life after high school that it is pointless to fight this request made by someone who was simply trying to protect the students at his school. The students do have every right to wear the shirt when they want, but instead of throwing a fit about not getting to wear it that day, they should just be grateful to have administrators who genuinely care about their safety, even if they do feel that it violates their first amendment rights.

6/1/2014
Irving/Texas
Rajith Idiculla
Bradley/Nimitz
It has been shown that Cinco de Mayo activities have been a cause for violence recently at this particular school, so in this case it would be better if the school did not celebrate Cinco de Mayo as an official school event. The court has ruled that when safety concerns are of matter the school has the right to try to take measures to keep the peace. However, the past racial violence has not always been because of students wearing the American flag but rather the celebration of Cinco de Mayo and how it divides the student population.The problem here is that the school administrators are asking for trouble when they openly try to celebrate another country. If students want to celebrate Cinco de Mayo and their heritage, that is fine but it shouldn't be a school endorsed event, especially when it is a schismatic issue between the population at the school. If this school really has such problems with gang violence, as reported, then administrators should spend more time disciplining their students and fixing their gang violence problem than trying to placate to students who are offended by the flag of the country that all parties involved are living in.

5/30/2014
Irving T.X
Eva
Bradley/Nimitz
If you are someone that decides to wear an American flag shirt on cinco de mayo you at some degree have knowledge of the conflict it may cause and surely know it could be offensive to people because of the day. America is diverse and things you could do in the 50's are not allowed anymore. America should protect any group of people living here because we all make up America. You are not going to wear a Mexico shirt on 4th of July, it is just something you know can be offensive same with wearing an American shirt on Cinco de Mayo. We are diverse now and should accept that there are just things we can not use anymore.

5/30/2014
Irving/Texas
Berenizes
Bradley/Nimitz
We all have rights and freedom of speech because of the first amendment. However, the main purpose of an education facility is to create an atmosphere of learning and safety. In order to make sure this purpose is achieved, we give up some of our freedoms as students when we enter school. When it comes to the issue at hand, the court ruling against the students was the right way to rule. People argue that when it came to the court case where students wore the vietnam arm bands, the Supreme court ruled in favor of the students but in that situation the students were just protesting the war.They weren’t harming or putting anyone in harm’s way. These students were instigating and creating an environment of legitimate threat and violence.By wearing the american flag shirts, they were luring out the gang members that have been prone to violence on Cinco de Mayo. Imagine if they had been allowed to wear the shirts throughout the day. There would have been an altercation that day where someone would’ve been seriously hurt.

5/29/2014
Irving, Tx
Pam
Bradley/Nimitz
I agree with the court's ruling. I think the safety of the school is more important than the student's freedom of speech, after all, it is only once a year this even happens. The school did what they thought necessary to keep the students safe, even if it did upset students. I do believe it had some impact that the shirts had the American flag on them, but they could have also worn other things to incite violence. Anything worn with that final purpose in mind could have been potentially dangerous.

5/29/2014
Irving, TX
Josh A
Bradley/ Nimitz
I definitely agree with the court ruling. It is true that we all have the right of freedom of expression, but most students are barred from their rights once they enter a school campus and must abide by the district's rules. During these Cinco de Mayo festivities, each student's safety was taken into consideration and the administrators had to do what was best for their students, including banning the t-shirts with the American flag on them that day. Furthermore, the ruling is reinforced by the past events which led to violence. The demonstration that the students, wearing the American Flag t-shirts,had on May 5th made this demonstration seem like an attempt to create violence. Thus, the ruling that the court made is justified. Safety first!

5/28/2014
irving/tx
pablo
bradley/nimitz
I agree with the courts ruling, the school did what they did because they had safety concerns since violence had been an issue on cinco de mayo in the past years. I understand why some people agree it violates the 1st amendment, but the safety of the students should comes first. The school acted within their bounds when they told students to cover the flags on their t shirts to prevent a fight. The fact that the shirts had the American flag had an impact on the ruling since Mexicans and Americans have had racist conflicts in the past and even today

5/28/2014
Maple, WI
Kyra
Mr.Crail/Northwestern
I strangely enough agree with the supreme court decision saying that banning the shirts was fine. My reasoning for this is based on the fact that the school was trying to avoid violence. The school was just taking precautions to protect its’ students. If the school had banned the American flag shirt on any other day it would have been unconstitutional, but the first amendment of speech only goes so far. If your speech is considered to be a danger or threat to others you lose some of your protection by the first amendment. I personally think that there may have been better ways to deal with the issue of protecting students, but I understand that sometimes the school officials just need to get things done. I think that the fact that is was an American flag should have some impact on what happened; however, on a daily basis wearing an American flag shirt should have no impact.

5/22/2014
Washington/NJ
Evan
Rokosny/Warren Hills
The banning of American flag T-Shirts on Cinco de Mayo is one hundred percent unconstitutional. Our first amendment clearly states that we have the right to freedom of speech, which is clearly being violated in this case. In the past, even shirts that simply have the names and logos of student's favorite bands have caused violence. A student from my school once took our middle school to the supreme court in a case similar to this, and although his T shirt instigated violence, because it doesn't violate school rules in any way, he won the case. Showing American spirit shouldn't get you in trouble, and as long as your actions don't initiate violence, it should be those who start violence with you that are suspended.

5/22/2014
Washington/NJ
Pamela
Rokosny/Warren Hills
I agree with the court's ruling, simply because of the fact that the school was banning the American Flag shirts in order to prevent violence. Because there is a history of gang-related violence, especially on Cinco de Mayo, the administrators acted in a responsible way in order to try and prevent violence. Although anything concerning the First Amendment is very controversial, I believe the school acted correctly by asking the students to cover their shirts. The fact that the shirts had American flags on them does not have any impact on the ruling; are we so obsessed with that symbol of freedom that we have to put others at risk in order to express ourselves?

5/22/2014
Washington NJ
Isaac
Rokosney/ Warren Hills High SChool
Back in ye' old America, the framers of the constitution and the bill of rights set up specific articles and amendments to protect the rights of the people. Of these fundamental rights, the framers felt that our right to the freedom to express ourselves and speak our mind without the fear of being persecuted by the federal government. In this respect, the court has no constitutional basis to ban the shirts with American flags on them on cinch de Mayo. There is a huge flaw though in using the first amendment as evidence in opposition of the courts decision. The amendment, taking into account historical context, was drafted to protect the citizens from potential tyranny from a strong central government; not giving the right for a group of students to create sociological barriers and engage in cultural based bullying of fellow students. When symbols, images, print materials, or any form of expression is used to demean fellow citizens, the school, and the courts, have both the right and prerogative to intervene. In a time when students are ending their lives because of verbal abuse (technically falling under a freedom of speech), forms of expression can be as dangerous as an unmonitored weapon, such as a gun, being permitted into a school. The fact that the American flag is on the shirts should not change the fact that the shirts are being used as a weapon, as if a flag was pained on a gun or knife.

5/22/2014
Washington/ nj
Justin Watts
Roskney/ Warren Hills
I do not think this is constitutional do to the president set by the tinker case because a american flag shirt would not disturb the class room. my own school had a lawsuit due a student being told they could not wear a "you are a redneck" shirt and the student won.

5/22/2014
Irving/TX
Anh
Bradley/Nimitz
I agree on the court’s ruling that American flag shirts should be banned on Cinco de Mayo due to the fact that in past incidents, has cause major violence breakouts to happen. If the court had just right out said that, no they can not wear it just because it’s the independence day of another country, then that would be unconstitutional. But the school had a right to ask the student’s to change since, like stated before, it has caused major violence in the area. It seems as though the student who had wore it was not citing patriotism but rather more tension between the Latino students on that exact day. At school, there are no students’ free speech rights and I believe that the public’s safety is far more important, since it’s for the greater good. Once you are at school, you do not have any rights since the school in entitled to do what is right for the whole student body. Though it may have been a bit risky for the school to ask the students to cover the flags, the school did the right thing to protect the public from violence that may occur in the already heavily tension situation, only taking precautions to stop the violence that might occur to their shirts that might cause unnecessary provocations.

5/19/2014
Irving/TX
Evila
Bradley/Nimitz
The first amendment was created to protect political freedoms. It was meant to allow open and free debate not allow violence. The school was merely trying to prevent aggression between the students. If it were any other emblem it would not have caused so much controversy. Do we value this freedom so much that we would our children's lives at risk? We should use this freedom to teach our children to speak their opinions with respect not use the American flags to incite violence among others. The flag of the United States stands as a symbol of hope and greatness, and it wrong to use it to spark hate. These are children, and therefor have limited rights. Whereas Tinker used an armband to peacefully and non intrusively protest, in this case, the school said gang-related racial violence was common. This no peaceful demonstration of patriotism, this was an attempt to create violence, and therefor is not protected under the first amendment. It is ok to disagree, but it's not ok to use our freedom of expression to threaten others.

5/19/2014
Irving/ Texas
Dania Vanessa
Bradley/ Nimitz
Since there was a history of gang violence on Cinco de Mayo, I do understand why the administration decided to ban the American Flag shirt. Even though the United States of America was formed on the freedom of individuals and their rights, it does not mean that citizens have the right to apply their rights everywhere in the country. In many schools, there is a dress code, and even if a student or staff member wants to wear a shirt expressing their love for an alcoholic beverage, if it is not allowed, no matter what rights you are born with, it does not mean that you can break the dress code. Live Oak High School, was acting within its bounds when it told students to cover the flags. It does not matter what the clothing item is or was, if the school does not allow it, then don’t wear it.

5/18/2014
Irving/Tx
Michael
Bradley/Nimitz
I do not agree with the courts rulling mainly because this is America which means we live a free country entitled to many rights. Freedon of expression, included in the 1st amendment, is what schools are trying to take away from us which is unconstitutional! NO, the school was acting outside their bounds when they told students to cover the flags on their t shirts because they were enforcing rules that is not in the constitution. No, the American flag shouldn't have any impact in the ruling, because every U.S citzen should have the right of freedom of expression according to the constitution.

5/18/2014
Irving/Texas
Jessi
Bradley/Nimitz
This is a tough situation. But the teachers are correct in that they were trying to prevent violence on campus. For the sake of the student body, the right decision was made. The school officials and district have a better understanding of the situation than anyone else and if they have valid reason to believe there was a clear threat of violence than they were right in protecting the students. The fact that they were wearing the American flag is significant. It's no coincidence that several students were wearing the shirts on a day celebrating another culture. Though students have rights like any other citizen, if school officials can prevent danger on campus than they are right to act. Both side of the arguments have valid reasoning but I'm siding with the SC on this one.

5/16/2014
Irving/ TX
Kayla
Helen Bradley/ Nimitz High School
Yes, I do agree with the court's ruling. Coming from a Mexican family and community this case hit right at home. I understand the students wearing their American Flags to show patriotism but why do it on Cinco de Mayo and not on any other day? In this situation in order for the school to be able to execute public safety they had diminish the importance of the students' freedom of speech. In this situation the school would not be able to reach a balance. I believe that both the safety and freedom of speech are equally important but in order for the person to be able to exercise their freedom of religion they must be safe and able to do so without future harm. The school did the right thing telling them to cover their flag, what they wanted was to secure their safety. No, the fact that the shirts had an American flag should not impact the ruling. Even though the flag was involved this is about the safety of the people and what is right.

5/15/2014
Irving/Texas
Monica F.
Bradley/Nimitz
The first thing I thought of when I read the opening question was of the Tinker v. Des Moines case, and when I continued reading, and saw that it was mentioned, I figured that the court would have ruled in favor of the students. But that wasn't the case. And while I understand that what the students did may have caused violence (and that violence shouldn't be tolerated), I do feel like the students' First Amendment rights were violated- strictly because of the fact that they were wearing shirts to support something they believed to be right., like the Tinkers did in 1969. Therefore, I do not agree with the Supreme Court's ruling.

5/14/2014
Irving/Texas
Erin D
Bradley/Nimitz
I believe that the court ruling should have reflected that of Tinker v. Des Moines, especially since in this case the students were displaying patriotism--something that should be commended not condemned. That being said, ruling in favor of the student’s would only be effective if we lived in a perfect world. Now a days, our country is racially defined and can nearly be called race based gangs. Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday, one that isn’t even derived from an issue with the US, so wearing the American flag should not be seen as offensive. Now, if the student’s were wearing the French flag, I can understand the offense and agree that they should be banned at school. All in all, I believe to Supreme Court ruling was wrong, American’s should never be banned to wear our flag.

5/13/2014
Irving/TX
Sarah V
Bradley/Nimitz
No, the school's ban on American flag shirts on Cinco de Mayo was not unconstitutional because the school had a legitimate safety concern as the reason for the ban. Since safety was possible put at risk with wearing the shirts, the ban protected the school from any possible violence that could've occurred, which did not hamper on anyone's First Amendment rights. As stated in the Preamble to the Constitution, one of its goals is to "ensure domestic tranquility", which the school's ban effectively did. The fact that the shirt had the American flag should not have any impact on the ruling because the main concern of the ban was to ensure safety; it was not intended to restrict patriotism in any way.

5/12/2014
Irving/TX
Sarah L
Bradley/Nimitz High School
It is completely unconstitutional to ban the American flag in the United States of America, any day of the year. I absolutely disagree with the court’s decision. I understand the schools’ concerns for students’ safety, but freedom of speech, unfortunately, will always present the risk of harm from opponents. We need to stop treating students like babies, and make them understand that they are going to get hurt. We are all going to encounter people with different opinions, but we, as Americans, should not be afraid to be patriotic about our own nation. Our rights and freedoms cannot be sacrificed, and our founding fathers would agree.

5/12/2014
Irving/Texas
Isabel
Bradley/Nimitz
I do not agree with the court's ruling. The students who wore the American flag shirt may have worn it with a bad intention, but to have told them to change or turn their shirts inside out just because they thought their shirt design may cause controversy is ridiculous. The administrators believed they did the right thing about telling those students to change their shirts, but Cinco de Mayo is a celebration for Mexicans, not everyone in America so they had a right to wear what they want, when they want.

5/11/2014
Irving/TX
Carmen
Bradley/Nimitz High School
Yes, I do agree on what the court decided on. Due to the fact that some students, parents. and even staff would take offense to it, its necessary for security reasons. School boards are simply trying to protect the students, in school we all have freedom of speech but just a more conservative freedom of speech. I believe safety is more important than the right to free speech, in school to be specific, students with different views, should simply respect the other students, the children who wore the American flag shirt were aware of what they were stepping into, and knew they'd get in trouble for their actions. The school did the right thing in asking the students to cover up their shirts, I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if someone did that to them. I don't think think the American flag should impact the ruling, it was a simple rule that students should have followed to begin with. It's all for good reasons, simply to keep all students safe.

5/9/2014
Irving/Tx
Ty'Mira
Bradley/Nimitz
I do not agree with the court's ruling for the simple fact that the students were band to wear the flag shirts just for one day. They say they are trying to prevent previous violence, but there would still be violence if the students wore the shirts another day. The School can balance safety rights by simply letting them know ahead of time that their shirt may cause prohibited violence. A persons safety is more important than freedom of speech. The School should not have told them to cover their shirts because, if an American citizen was told to cover their Flag symbolized shirt there would be a price to pay, I am sure.

5/9/2014
Irving/Texas
Jose L
Bradley/Nimitz
I do agree in the courts decision. It was reasonable for the school district to take its precautions. As patriotic as people may appeal to be, the school district saw the danger in possible disputes. If it was in the public they might have had that flexibility because the school district isn’t responsible. Since the students are under the school’s responsibility they can do what they feel it’s best to avoid altercations. There were previous occurrences that rivalries have became an issue to student safety to back up the school’s argument. The instigators should have taken their patriotism elsewhere. Although we have freedom of speech we should be conscious of when not to exploit our privileges.

5/8/2014
Irving/Texas
Kimberly
Bradley/Nimitz
When it comes to racial issues someone will always get upset. The American flag should be allowed at all times no matter what day it is. I understand that there had been conflicts in past with the American flag and Cinco de Mayo, but in no situation should a student be told to stop halt there pride in their country. The students should be able to show their pride in their nation, Hispanic or American.

5/7/2014
Irving/Texas
Kelsea
Bradley/Nimitz HS
To question whether students should be able to wear American flags in the free country of America seems preposterous at first glance. There’s no doubt that it is an American right to be proud of your country, but when safety is of concern in a learning environment there has to be consideration for the well being of the student body of the school as a whole. I agree with the court’s rulings but I have to question why the school officials are unable to ensure the safety of the kids. Safety comes first in any situation especially involving government institutions such as schools, but the individual student should be able to choose whether they are willing to endanger themselves by offending other students or starting conflicts. If the purpose behind wearing the shirts is to offend it would be wrong. It’s a matter of respect for different cultures of America-the boiling pot of history. The Latino people belong here just as much as the rest of the population and they are free to practice whatever they’d like just as Americans can on the Fourth of July. I don’t know about you, but I don’t see many mexicans walking around on the Fourth of July with Mexican flag T-shirts on. I think that the school’s decisions to prevent conflict were highly appropriate and justified in accomplishing the establishment of an environment of learning with minimal interruptions over something that shouldn’t be occurring in the first place.

5/6/2014
Irving/Texas
Adam
Bradley/Nimitz
Yes I do agree with the courts ruling. It should be understood that the school was trying to protect the students. Wearing the American flag shirts purposely on another country’s celebration just for intention of violence and causing rifts is ridiculous. They could say Rights were violated but, when we are at school, its whole different situation. The safety and security of the student body should be the first priority. As the article says, the school has had past gang related violence on Cinco De Mayo, and with the kids wearing the shirts, could obviously escalate the situation even worse than the previous time. Tell the students to wear the shirts another day if they are that patriotic, bet none of them could tell me the current Chief Justice though.

5/6/2014
Montana
Melissa
North Star High School
American flag shirts should not be banned! I understand the point that the school is trying to maintain public peace, therefore this argument could be valid. There is a point to be made that some schools require flags to be hung in the school, or in the classrooms. I think that the court's ruling was correct because they were concerned about the public saftey dealing with the gangs. Even though this does infringe on the individual rights of the students, it benefits the common good.

5/5/2014
Irving/Tx
Ruth
Bradley/Nimitz
I strongly agree with the court's ruling,not because it has to do with Cinco de Mayo but for pure security reasons. Lets remind ourselves that when in school we still have our rights but they are just moderated for the purpose of our own good. The kids who decided to wear the shirts clearly knew what they were doing and got upset when they got in trouble for wearing the shirts and decided to take it out on the school. They knew wearing the shirts could be an endangerment to both themselves and their fellow peers,but they still wore it, and just because it had the American flag on their shirt it should not matter. If the situation was reversed the same rules should apply,rules are made for a reason, in this case it was for the SAFETY of the students.The kids who wore the shirts need to stop being little cry babies and get over it,if they are so “patriotic”like they claim to be they could wear the shirt any other day!

5/5/2014
Montana
Bet
North Star high
I feel that the students have a right to wear the American flag but at the same time with that being said we should take a few things into consideration. For instance the fact that this isn't the first time this school has had run-ins with cinco de mayo. They have had gang-related racial violence, which I feel already changes the case on the students wearing the flags on their shirts in the first place. Also the fact that it wasnt just one kid that wore it, Which means they planned it . It wasn't a coincidence that it happened to be on the same day as Cinco de Mayo. They were trying to prove a point.

5/5/2014
North Star High School
Quinn
Mrs. Campbell
In my opinion, the students should not be able to wear these shirts in the situation presented. When kids go to school, some of their rights are left at the door for the common good of the school and to prevent the violation of other kid's rights. These kids who wore the shirts were endangering other kids and themselves by wearing these shirts around gang members that have been prone to violence on Cinco de Mayo. That is not saying that they don't have the right to do this if the gangs were more tolerable, but since they are infringing on their own, and other people's safety, they should not be allowed to do so. But this poses another question. On the flip side, what if those students were in summer-school, or a school-sponsored driver's education class that went on during the 4th of July and the Latino students wore Mexican flag shirts? Do they have the same rights taken away? Tolerance should go both ways and everyone should have the same rights retracted to support the common good.

5/5/2014
Rudyard/MT
Sarah
Mrs. Campbell/North Star
When a student enters the doors of the schoolhouse, they leave certain freedoms at the door. The goal of the school is to create an environment in which every student feels safe and can learn at the optimum level. That is why certain freedoms of speech or the press are given up at the door. That is why the court ruled against the students in this case. There was a legitimate threat that this action would instigate a, more than likely, violent response. The common good of the school was more important than those few students freedom of speech. Even with the precedent of the Vietnam armbands, I do feel that the court ruling was right.

5/5/2014
MT
Delainey
North Star a High School
Every school has a dress code. The requirements and standards of these dress codes grossly differ, though. At my school, you cannot wear shorts/skirts/dresses more than 3 inches above your knee, and you cannot wear clothing referencing drugs or inappropriate slang. These rules are for good measure and appropriateness. But not being able to advertise your American pride? Being unable to show your patriotism? How is that appropriate? How is that for good measure? This is America. We are known for our patriotism, American pride and love for our country. If we can't show it, then how do we know it is still there? If we can't express our love for our country because it's "insensitive" to another culture, then is it even our country? Is it even America?

5/5/2014
Rudyard, MT
The Cooper Spicher
Ms. Campbell/North Star High School
This is 'Murica. You should be able to wear an American flag shirt whenever you want. Yes, Cinco de Mayo celebrates another country, but America is the one we live in. I should be able to represent my country and patriotism whenever I want since, ya know, we live here. I strongly disagree with the court's ruling. I think it's a joke that they got in trouble FOR WEARING AN AMERICAN FLAG! It's not like they were wearing swastikas or promoting terrorism. They were representing the country that we live in! This should not even be an issue.

5/5/2014
Montana
Melissa
North Star High School
American flag shirts should not be banned! I understand the point that the school is trying to maintain public peace, therefore this argument could be valid. There is a point to be made that some schools require flags to be hung in the school, or in the classrooms. I think that the court's ruling was correct because they were concerned about the public saftey dealing with the gangs. Even though this does infringe on the individual rights of the students, it benefits the common good.

5/3/2014
Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan
Rachel23
Pierce Middle School
Its the students rights to wear what they want, especially when its not something inappropriate, but an AMERICAN FLAG!!! We live in America, and this is showing patriotism. Does this mean now that whenever we celebrate another nation, or its the holiday of another country we don't have the right to act like patriotic Americans? Its one thing if we're in another country when this happened but in America? We might as well take down all the flags that are, let me remind you, REQUIRED in each class room. Wouldn't want to offend people of other descents, now would we? Better yet lets take it away altogether. No more American flags!

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