When 200 hispanic students skipped school last week and marched through downtown Morgan Hill, California chanting "Si se puede" intermixed with "We want respect," none were banned from school attendance on their return.
When five students, one of them an American from latino roots, wore American flags to school as a sign of patriotic speech, they were labeled incendiary. They were instructed to turn their shirts inside-out so as to cover up the American flag. And when they refused to surrender their first amendment right to expression, they were given unexcused absences.
Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez called the flag draped wardrobe "incendiary" because the students had chosen to worn them on May 5, popularly known as Cinco de Mayo. (A date that "celebrates" Mexico's defeat of the French in a single battle, in a war that Mexico eventually lost.)
The school's administration went further in claiming the five students were attempting "to start a fight" and "adding fuel to the fire."
Latino parents chimed in and chided the five students (one of which is of Mexican ethnic heritage) saying, "we're all offended by it."
One parent, Teresa Casillas, claimed her hispanic children were upset by the behavior of the boys wearing the flagged shirts, calling it disrespectful.
Yet for all the outcry, not an ounce of proof has erupted that the boys made any actions of provocation--except wear the shirts on Cinco De Mayo.
One of the more ignorant utterances by one of the hispanic student protestors summed up the stupidity best, "It's disrespectful to do it on Cinco de Mayo," said Jessica Cortez, a Live Oak sophomore. "They can be a patriot on some other day. Not that specific day."
And so this is what the argument has been reduced to.I mean, you do understand don't you that Cinco de Mayo is not even celebrated en masse by Mexicans?
Yet the militant, belligerent, children of latinos living in Morgan Hill are exhibiting symptoms of a problem that is widespread. Raw naked entitlement that not only flouts the laws, but has now led to the limiting of the most legitimate expression whose freedom should always be protected: patriotism.
It was bad enough that the Obama administration went on a systematic campaign to discredit the recent right of the state of Arizona to reinforce federal guidelines for immigration. It was bad enough that the lies were widely told, and never retracted by news agencies that should have known better.
It was worse when tens of thousands of illegals marched on downtown streets without any fear to demand socialized redistribution of rights to those who are not citizens and who disrespect the laws of our nation to even bother themselves with trying to correct course.
Normally, I'm exceedingly compassionate to all people groups who wish to get to America. After all, if they wish to change their identity, support the values of our nation, and identify with the cause of what is true, just, and good, then they should in fact be ideal candidates for American citizenship.
Yet there is nothing unconstitutional, unlawful, immoral, or even unkind about asking those who come to politely walk to the end of the fence, be prepared to identify who they are, and state the lawful basis they have for coming through our border gate.
The actions of the 200 students of Morgan Hill marching on the streets of their village though repulsive in it's intent, is a constitutionally protected expression.
So were the actions of five students, one of whom is a child of hispanics, to wear American Flag shirts, shorts, caps, and sneakers if they so wish.
It may be the expression du jour to blame America for the ills of all that goes wrong in the world. Pardon me if I don't.
Principal Boden and Assistant Principal Rodriguez should be fired from Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, California.
The school board could do so easily.
And if they needed to be politically correct about what they call it, merely label it a permanent unexcused absence.
The families of Los Estados Unidos deserve much better!