Students Sent Home Because Of U.S. Flag T-Shirts

May 9, 2010 12:07 am  

They Were Wearing Red, White And Blue T-Shirts To School On Stinko de Mayo.

(The Gilroy Dispatch) – Tea Partiers rally for America, Live Oak students

Live Oak students sent home for wearing a red, white and blue T-shirt to school on Stinko de Mayo.

The four students from Live Oak High School who have stirred controversy to all parts of the country received a three-hour standing ovation from about 100 American flag-waving Tea Partiers this morning along Monterey Road in downtown.

“We are not ashamed to wear this flag on any day,” said Kelly Stone, the local Tea Party organizer. “And people blessed to live in this country should not be ashamed to display the American flag or to see the American flag.”

Against the backdrop of Americana hymns and homemade signs were the honking and blaring of car horns largely in support of the display of red, white and blue. A few cars drove past with Mexican flags waving in opposition and met with “Go back to Mexico!” from a few standing alongside the street.

Morgan Hill police had a run in with two people who did not find the rally agreeable. The MHPD public information officer on-duty was unavailable to confirm of deny if anyone was arrested at the Tea Party rally. Though, several people said a man assaulted a Tea Partier near Main Street and was arrested.

For five weeks, the local Tea Party chapter has rallied in the same spot in downtown, usually drawing about 20 to 30 ralliers. But today, the crowd exploded as people joined in to stand up for the four Live Oak students sent home for donning red, white and blue to school on Cinco de Mayo. Three of the four boys – Daniel Galli, Matt Dariano and Dominic Maciel – were on Monterey Road shaking hands with Tea Partiers and taking pictures with people on the street. The boys said Austin Carvalho was on his way to downtown.

Veteran Fred Vierra of Salinas told Dariano’s mother to make sure they “stay on the straight and narrow because everyone is watching them now.”

Vierra shook the boys hands and thanked them for their patriotism – they thanked him. too, in return.

A woman driving through downtown stopped traffic to ask why so many people were waving flags.

“It’s for the Live Oak students who were sent home on Cinco de Mayo,” Celine Croft, a freshman at Live Oak, told her.

“I just went on a cruise to Mexico and they didn’t know what the hell I was talking about when I said ‘Cinco de Mayo’ ” she said. “This is crazy,” and drove off to the delight of the line of cars behind her.
Kathryn Walker-Mendoza of Morgan Hill was out enjoying the farmer’s market on East Third Street when she stopped to see what she could only describe as “sad.”

“It’s too bad that they’re stirring things up so much,” Walker-Mendoza said. Her daughter Madison is a sophomore at Live Oak. Walker-Mendoza kept Madison home from school part of Thursday and all of Friday because her daughter was defending the Hispanic students on campus and felt threatened.

“We’re all from somewhere else. We need to honor each other’s cultures,” she said.


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