Live Oak High School, from what I've read, seems to be an ethnically-diverse school. That certainly doesn't make it different from most schools these days. As a matter of fact, in the not-too-distant future, whites will be in the minority in the United States. I get it. Still, I'm not sure that our forefathers imagined this 'melting pot' to be as divisive as it is...or will be. So, American students at Live Oak decided to wear American flag t-shirts to school during the Cinco de Mayo Mexican heritage celebration last year. These students were ordered by the school administration to either turn the shirts inside out or were sent home from school that day. Let me say that again - American students, wearing shirts that represented the United States flag, were ordered to either remove the shirts or leave school. This is the same flag that, when parading past the reviewing stands in the Olympics, will not be lowered for ANY country in the world. It simply isn't done. In this case, however, school officials expressed concerns about racial violence based on previous problems between white and Latino students.
The case quickly gained national notoriety when the American Freedom Law Center, as well as other similar organizations, joined the cause and sued the school district. They lost. Yes, you read that correctly - they lost in court. Not to worry, though, as our legal system has that most wonderful option - an appeal process - that will allow a higher court to review and rule on the case. Thursday of this week, February 27th, 2014, the ruling was handed down by the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals. In their view, the school district acted appropriately when they made the students remove the shirts or leave school. Again, based on past instances of racial violence, the school thought it best to send students home. This ruling, handed down by a unanimous 3-judge panel, can also be appealed by an 11-judge panel. Already, the lawyers are planning such an appeal. Okay, so there are the facts of the case. Now.....it's my turn.
Are you kidding me??? How dare you trample the right of our citizens and The Constitution? Before anyone starts to argue, hear me out and let me summarize what I've said above, as stated by one of the American students lawyers - "The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled and upheld the rights of Mexican students celebrating the holiday of another country over US students proudly supporting THIS country." Let me also say that I, as well as many of the people I know, are certainly glad to celebrate the holiday along with our Mexican friends. Should it ever come to violence if a student wants to wear an American flag? Certainly not. If the students of Mexican heritage find that offensive, let's deal with that. Why....in the name of all that is precious and right, WHY do we have to keep concerning ourselves over not wanting to hurt the feelings of other nationalities here at home? This is the United States of America. I can understand if we were in Mexico...or France, or Spain, or Germany or.....the list goes on. I could understand why we'd have to be respectful of their heritage and customs. This isn't, however, any of those countries. Again, lest anyone think I (those that know me, know better) am a bigot or racist, let me reiterate my personal stance - I am fine living in a mutually-respectful environment where we all can, and do, get along and live in harmony. Let's be honest, though - if there were previous problems and the school district feared it happening again, they made this decision so that the Mexican students would not be offended and start any racial violence.
Here is my ultimate question - when does it end? When do we start concerning ourselves with how Americans feel rather than foreigners? We, as Americans, have been told we need to be tolerant. In actuality, it is demanded that we be tolerant. There are ongoing issues and legal cases involving those of Middle Eastern descent. My message to those folks is quite simple, and I will say what many think - People of your nationality hijacked several planes for the sole purpose of killing Americans on our home soil. Those same people make it known, daily, that the only good American is a dead American. I know I am generalizing, however this is America - please do not act incredulous when we feel this way. As a matter of fact, if it is so horrible living here, there are options, though I assume there is a reason you are here and not in your country. Please, too, acknowledge that fact that if this were in a Middle Eastern country, there is absolutely NO WAY we would be given the same considerations you are being given by our government. Do you seriously think those governments and courts would side with an American or rule that their own people were discriminating against us. If you say anything but, "Hardly," I will call you a liar.
The same goes for this situation, so let me ask a different way (as I am a big fan of analogies) - If we were in Mexico in July and decided we wanted to celebrate the 4th of July, do you think Mexican school officials would make Mexican students remover THEIR Mexican flag t-shirts? How do you think it would be accepted if the American students resorted to violence? Would they send them home and consider the rights of American students over Mexican students. Again, if the answer is anything other than, "Absolutely not," I will say you're either lying or naive. It would not happen. So what do we, as white Americans, have to do get the same consideration guaranteed by the Constitution, as those living here from a foreign country. Better yet, what do we, as white Americans, have to do to get the same consideration as any minority? Is violence the answer when someone disagrees with our own personal beliefs? it seems to work with others so why not us?
Perhaps we need to start a revolution, again, to take back our country. Our elected officials are overly consumed with bowing to the demands of these groups, while neglecting the needs of their fellow Americans. At times like this, I think how fortunate I am to be older as I will, eventually, not have this as a concern. I worry, though, for our next generation. Something has to be done and, I believe, it has to start soon before we give away our identity as a nation. Perhaps revolt is needed. Unless we give in to the demands of these groups, there is little peace anyway, so what remains? How can this change? I really have no answer other than reevaluating our (apparently) outdated ideas on how we allow immigrants into the country and what we give them that costs us much. I've said it before - our forefathers came to this country and were expected to learn OUR ways, OUR language, OUR heritage. I can almost say, without hesitation, that they never envisioned a world where we had to, "Press 1 for English." We need help and we need it now. Our government, as evidenced above, MUST start using common sense and punish the offenders, not those that might fan the flames of violence simply by being themselves. I only hope we can find our common sense before our children live in a country we do not recognize and whose beliefs and values have been trampled all in the name of not offending our 'guests'.
Until next time...............