South Bay Students Lose Court Battle Over "Incendiary" American Flag T-Shirts
|You are not free to wear this t-shirt in Morgan Hill schools|
A judge dismissed the case against Live Oaks High School administrators, saying the Morgan Hill-based school did not violate the students' First and 14th Amendment rights when officials sent them home for refusing to turn their American flag t-shirts inside out.
The controversy started on Cinco de Mayo last year, when four students came to school wearing American-themed attire, including bandannas. School officials told the kids they had to turn their shirts inside out and hide the flag, otherwise it might provoke violence on the Mexican holiday.
But when the students refused, they were sent home.
Plaintiffs Dianna and John Dariano, parents of Matt Dariano; Kurt and Julie Ann Fagerstrom, parents of Dominic Maciel; and Kendall and Joy Jones on behalf of Daniel Galli filed the lawsuit against the school district, seeking nominal damages, including changing school policies to clearly state students' rights and protections under the Bill of Rights.
But a judge ruled against the students this week, saying "Because the school officials were responsible for the safety of the plaintiffs on a day-to-day basis, the court finds that they did not violate the First Amendment by asking plaintiffs to turn their shirts inside out to avoid physical harm."
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