Video: “Cinco de Mayo not the day for patriotism”; Update: Laura Ingraham interviews the parents

posted at 12:15 pm on May 6, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

In the suburbs of Silicon Valley, not far away from San Francisco Bay, there are apparently particular days for patriotism, at least according to one high school in Morgan Hill. On Cinco de Mayo, several students decided to wear clothing with American flag designs to make a statement about their own views on heritage — including one Hispanic student. Teachers demanded that they either turn their shirts inside out and remove all other American flag-themed clothing or face suspension for “defiance.” Their parents are outraged:

On any other day at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, Daniel Galli and his four friends would not even be noticed for wearing T-shirts with the American flag. But Cinco de Mayo is not any typical day especially on a campus with a large Mexican American student population.

Galli says he and his friends were sitting at a table during brunch break when the vice principal asked two of the boys to remove American flag bandannas that they wearing on their heads and for the others to turn their American flag T-shirts inside out. When they refused, the boys were ordered to go to the principal’s office.

“They said we could wear it on any other day,” Daniel Galli said, “but today is sensitive to Mexican-Americans because it’s supposed to be their holiday so we were not allowed to wear it today.”

The boys said the administrators called their T-shirts “incendiary” that would lead to fights on campus.

Incendiary? Since when is it incendiary to express patriotism for one’s own country? This is absurd, as are the demands for apologies from these students for offending those who observed Cinco de Mayo. One expression of celebration doesn’t interfere with another, however, as should have been obvious at the campus before the teachers got involved at all. If students want to “express themselves” by celebrating Cinco de Mayo, then they should be prepared to allow others to express themselves as well. Instead, they want the public expression monopoly at their high school — and the administration was stupid enough to concede it to them.

Zombie also notes the ridiculous political correctness of the complaint, via the Boss Emeritus:

NBC quotes a fellow student:

“I think they should apologize cause it is a Mexican Heritage Day,” Annicia Nunez, a Live Oak High student, said. “We don’t deserve to be get disrespected like that. We wouldn’t do that on Fourth of July.”

Disrespected? I’m confused. Aren’t all the students Americans? Who is being disrespected by the display of our shared national flag?

Of course, school is usually out on the Fourth of July, even summer school. Maybe St. Patrick’s Day would be a better analog. Would I, as an American of Irish descent, get offended by an American flag on March 17th? Er, no. I wouldn’t even get offended by someone wearing Mexican-flag themed clothing. In fact, I wouldn’t care at all.

Apparently, Live Oak High School specializes in victimology and political correctness. Maybe they should teach civics at Live Oak … to the teachers and administrators.

Update: Laura Ingraham conducted a lengthy interview with the parents of the suspended students. Be sure to listen to it all:

Breaking on Hot Air



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This precise issue was addressed in Tinker v. Des Moines Ind. Comm. School Dist. Morse v. Frederick (Bong hits for Jesus) questioned some of the grounds of the decision, but this appears rather close to pure speech and is therefore protected.

ColoradoMW on May 7, 2010 at 1:07 PM

I respect all student protests. They are living the results of ignoring our borders.

They are not at fault.

This is definitely going to tear them up.

AnninCA on May 7, 2010 at 1:45 PM

Maybe a ban on flying any other country’s flag(s) from any and all United States taxpayer funded buildings and institutions is in order.
No Mexican flags at any school in America.. on any day, in any month, in any year, problem solved.
Anyone insane enough to suggest an American can not wear an American flag in America for any reason, let alone because of another country’s ‘holiday’, should have their head examined…then be …….ok , I wont go there.
Fire any staff at Live Oak High School who participated in this UN-AMERICAN – treasonous behavior.

shooter on May 7, 2010 at 1:52 PM

even the Mexicans know beating the French isn’t a big achievement…
ninjapirate on May 6, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Actually, the French came back and kicked their butts a few days later, the Mexicans lost the war.
The ONLY Mexican win was a battle at Puebla ( I think this is where it happened) on May 5th, mid 1800’s.

shooter on May 7, 2010 at 1:56 PM

So, Americans in Mexico could demand that on July 4 only Americans can celebrate their heritage?

Why not?

Paul_in_NJ on May 7, 2010 at 4:38 PM

Paul_in_NJ on May 7, 2010 at 4:38 PM said:

“So, Americans in Mexico could demand that on July 4 only Americans can celebrate their heritage?

Why not?”

Because that would be racist! See how it works now? It’s a rigged game.

You say: “But you crossed our border illegally!”
They say: “No human is illegal!”

You say: “But you used fake and stolen documents to get a job!”
They say: “I just want to work and make a better life for my family!”

You say: “But you’re breaking the law and stealing services from the taxpayers designed for legal citizens.”
They say: “You are a racist and I demand the same rights as everyone else!”

That is Invasion 101

shorebird on May 7, 2010 at 11:25 PM

Principal apologizes to patriotic American students.
You idiots who think these boys were wrong or that their treatment was justified should be ashamed.

CWforFreedom on May 8, 2010 at 1:33 PM

Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for “fifth of May”) is a holiday held on May 5 that commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín. It is celebrated primarily in the state of Puebla and in the United States. While Cinco de Mayo sees limited significance and celebration nationwide in Mexico, the date is observed nationwide in the United States and other locations around the world as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride. Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day, the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico.

So they are celebrating the “unlikely” victory of the Mexican army over the (“cheese eating surrender monkeys”) French. Since most schools won’t celebrate any US military activity, they have to slide “military appreciation” in there some how.

What about the self-esteem of the (“cheese eating surrender monkeys”) French students. Will there be a “racial war” when they find out that they are forced to participate in a celebration of a Mexican military victory over their ancestors ?

What about the French Muslim students ? If we hear “Dieu est grand” on the next Cinco de Mayo, we’ll know the “racial war” has begun.

J_Crater on May 8, 2010 at 8:58 PM