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American flag shirts ignite firestorm
Gilroy Dispatch ^ | May 6, 2010 | Lindsay Bryant

Posted on 05/06/2010 7:37:10 PM PDT by artichokegrower

Four Live Oak High School teens sent home for wearing American flag T-shirts on Cinco de Mayo have become the focus of national media attention and spurred a march by Hispanic students through downtown Morgan Hill.

Live Oak students Daniel Galli, Dominic Maciel, Matt Dariano and Austin Carvalho wore red, white and blue T-shirts - some with the American flag and some with flag shorts - to school Wednesday, prompting administrators to ask the students to change their clothing or turn their T-shirts inside-out because it could incite a confrontation on Cinco de Mayo. The four students' parents were called into a conference with Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez and Principal Nick Boden, who sent the students home with an unexcused absence - not a suspension.

"I just couldn't believe it," said Dominic's mother Julie Fagerstrom Wednesday. "I'm an open-minded parent, but it's got to be on both sides. It can't be five kids singled out."

Students originally reported that five students were sent home, but one returned to class Wednesday.

Maciel said Rodriguez called the T-shirts "incendiary."

"They said we were starting a fight, we were fuel to the fire," said Dariano, a sophomore.

Teresa Casillas, parent of two Live Oak students, said the American-flag wearing students were yelling "We live in America!" at the brunch break Wednesday. She said her children were upset by their behavior at school, calling it disrespectful.

"We're all offended by it," Casillas said. She said parents of all ethnicities she spoke with felt that way. "Morgan Hill is too small of a community to start any racial wars. This is just bringing it out a little bit more."

The incident has set off a firestorm of outrage online, a flurry of media coverage and a backlash from some in the Hispanic community, who have been offended by some of the defenses offered for the four students.

After the Morgan Hill Times broke the story, Bay Area news stations set up camp in front of Live Oak High School Thursday morning as many more students came to school wearing red, white and blue. In addition, the story made it to national media outlets, such as The Drudge Report and the front page of FoxNews.com.

Locally, about 200 Hispanic students walked out of Live Oak and Ann Sobrato high schools, chanting "Si se puede" and "We want respect" and disrupting traffic as they marched through Morgan Hill to demonstrate their support for Mexico.

"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."

Live Oak parent Greg Hall saw the band of Hispanic students walking down Monterey Road Thursday.

"The fact that these four kids were singled out for wearing American colors is utterly ridiculous," he said. "I think the assistant principal and principal should be fired. The (protesting) students should be disciplined - suspended or expelled."

Hispanic students felt students wearing American flags were disrespecting the Mexican-American students on Cinco de Mayo - a day on which they celebrate their Mexican heritage.

Students who sported red, white and blue said denying them the right to wear American colors is a violation of the First Amendment.

While Live Oak administrators were silent on the issue, Morgan Hill Unified School District Superintendent Wes Smith said that the district "does not prohibit nor do we discourage wearing patriotic clothing."

In a statement, Smith wrote: "The incident on May 5 at Live Oak High School is extremely unfortunate. While campus safety is our primary concern and administrators made decisions yesterday in an attempt to ensure campus safety, students should not, and will not, be disciplined for wearing patriotic clothing. This matter is under investigation and appropriate action will be taken."

The four students and their parents met with Assistant Superintendent Jay Totter Wednesday evening at the district headquarters and they said Totter told them what happened was wrong and "(the district) would take care of it."

Uncle Sam even set foot onto Live Oak campus Thursday in the form of John Messina, a San Jose resident who said he was so enraged that he drove 30 minutes to protest before school started. He held a sign that read "Patriotism is not a crime" on one side and "Support the 1st amendment. Fire Rodriguez" on the back.

Over at Gilroy High School, Mexican and American patriotic colors commingled peacefully Wednesday, Principal Marco Sanchez said.

"Kids were in good spirits," he said. "I was out on campus most of the day and didn't see anything that was abnormal."

Plenty of students donned both countries' national colors, but none were sent home for wearing green, red, white, blue or any combination thereof, he said. Doing so would be "outrageous," he said.

"We're not going to be sending kids home for wearing American flags or wearing patriotic colors," Sanchez said. "That's discriminatory."

William J. Becker Jr., a First Amendment attorney based in Los Angeles, said the students' First Amendment rights were violated.

"The student wearing the Old Navy T-shirt with the flag does not shed their First Amendment rights at the school house gates," Becker said.

Administrators cannot ask students to relinquish their freedom of speech and expression due to the fear that something might happen, Becker said. When a person's right to freedom of speech or expression is restricted to prevent another party from reacting, it's known as the heckler's veto. Becker said this is a perfect example of how heckler's veto was used to displace the students' freedom of speech.

"Every viewpoint has a particular averse viewpoint," Becker said. "That's why the First Amendment is there - to support unpopular expression."

Comments left online on the Times and Gilroy Dispatch websites said the boys are often seen with American flag patches on their backpacks, and Maciel said he's worn the T-shirt he wore on Cinco de Mayo many times before.

"It's just because it was on their day," Maciel said.

One Mexican-American student, freshman Laura Ponce, had a Mexican flag painted on her face and chest, peeking out of her low-cut shirt. She did it because, "it's our day, the only day we can show our spirit."

A school administrator took away the Mexican flag she was carrying as she was waiting to go home.

"Not cool," she said in reaction.

"There was a lot of drama going on today," Ponce said. Some students were saying "Mexico sucks," and Mexican-American students responded in kind, she said.

"Some were yelling Spanish to us," said Maciel, who is half-Hispanic. "I couldn't understand it, but it sounded bad."

Curtis Collier, the president of the U.S. Border Watch, a citizens' action group whose mission is to "stem illegal entry into the U.S. from the north and south," called from his Texas office appalled by the news emanating across the Web and television.

"That is their constitutional right to wear the shirt," Collier said. "I think the school missed a golden opportunity here and missed having a dialogue between the students and have them talk it out."


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: dresscodes; immigration; mexico; obama; obamanation; oldglory; publikschoolz; tshirt
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I suggest to the 200 students that walked out of class today to continue walking in a southern direction preferably.
1 posted on 05/06/2010 7:37:10 PM PDT by artichokegrower
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To: artichokegrower

Yes, and take a bunch more of their friends and family with them.


2 posted on 05/06/2010 7:42:49 PM PDT by Past Your Eyes (You don't have to be ignorant to be a Democrat...but if you are...so what?)
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To: artichokegrower

If one, or two, or whatever wish to be offended, they will be. I say those that are so offended are looking to be.

Eff ‘em if they can’t take a little truth such as they live in America, and America has a Red, White, and Blue flag. If they don’t like it, they most certainly can get the Hell out of this country, and go back to that of their origin.


3 posted on 05/06/2010 7:43:05 PM PDT by rockinqsranch ("Dems, Libs, Socialists...Call 'em What you Will, They ALL have Fairies Living In Their Trees.)
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To: artichokegrower
"They can be a patriot on some other day. Not that specific day."

Sums it all up.

4 posted on 05/06/2010 7:43:29 PM PDT by optiguy (Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them.----- Ronald Reagan)
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To: artichokegrower

And get in line like the rest of legal immigrants.


5 posted on 05/06/2010 7:44:06 PM PDT by whatisthetruth
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To: artichokegrower

Anyone know where the MSM is on this one?

I ask to find out if there is a difference in their opinion of the five students here, and the tuxedo-wearing lesbian from a month or two ago.


6 posted on 05/06/2010 7:45:39 PM PDT by RangerM (A liberal is a man too broadminded to take his own side in a quarrel - Robert Frost.)
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To: artichokegrower

“We live in America!”


This is being racist now!


7 posted on 05/06/2010 7:46:18 PM PDT by John Leland 1789 (Grateful)
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To: artichokegrower

They can always return to Mexico if their so proud of their home country.


8 posted on 05/06/2010 7:46:52 PM PDT by Man50D (Fair Tax, you earn it, you keep it! www.FairTaxNation.com)
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To: Man50D

Time to print a ton of american t shirts and sell them and give the money to charity


9 posted on 05/06/2010 7:47:41 PM PDT by truthbetold11 (truthbetold11)
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To: artichokegrower
"Every viewpoint has a particular averse viewpoint," Becker said. "That's why the First Amendment is there - to support unpopular expression."

So the boys can wear the red, white and blue even though it's an "unpopular expression"?

10 posted on 05/06/2010 7:47:51 PM PDT by GOPJ ("Draw Mohammad Day" - - May 20, 2010 - Draw for freedom - draw for your children's freedom.)
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To: artichokegrower
We celebrate Feb 2nd here.
11 posted on 05/06/2010 7:48:53 PM PDT by bitterohiogunclinger (America held hostage - day 393)
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To: artichokegrower

Anchor babies.


12 posted on 05/06/2010 7:48:54 PM PDT by mowowie
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To: artichokegrower

Pssst, Jessica. We aren’t Mexico; celebrate your heritage at home.


13 posted on 05/06/2010 7:48:54 PM PDT by skr (May God confound the enemy)
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To: artichokegrower

We’ll give you “respect” with the backs of our hands.


14 posted on 05/06/2010 7:49:29 PM PDT by Lockbar (March toward the sound of the guns.)
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To: artichokegrower
"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."

Words fail me here...

15 posted on 05/06/2010 7:49:34 PM PDT by TXBlair (Clinton: 0%. Obama: 50%. I wonder how black our third "first black president" will be?! :))
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To: artichokegrower

I say, where the hell can I get one of those American flag shirts...


16 posted on 05/06/2010 7:53:11 PM PDT by dps.inspect (uttox)
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To: artichokegrower
The other day (a few months ago) I caught a local Mexican (Hispanic?) younger adult (20+) urinating on the front wall of a local convenience store, 11:00 on Sunday morning, on a major US highway, in full view of whatever traffic in the area.

Although I'm forty years older and he could of whipped my ass, I grabbed him and said we don't do that in America. He was surprised, spoke little English, and retreated back to his car where a stoned buddy was slumped, then drove off.

Either one stands up for responsibility and respect in America or one is the problem.

Think George Soros or Nancy Pelosi would do the same?

17 posted on 05/06/2010 7:53:16 PM PDT by jnsun (The Left: the need to manipulate others because of nothing productive to offer.)
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To: artichokegrower

I suggest that we get the National Guard with fixed bayonets to make sure they don’t turn around.


18 posted on 05/06/2010 7:56:52 PM PDT by Blood of Tyrants (The US will not die with a whimper. It will die with thundering applause from the left.)
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To: artichokegrower

Mexico can go buck in freaking hell for all I care.

I will wear Red, White and Blue every DAMN day I want and NOBODY in HELL can tell me otherwise.

I fought for freedom and my fellow soldiers died for freedom and I will NOT let some motherfreakin, lazy ass, ASSHOLES tell me what I can or can not do.

Freak them to everlasting hell!


19 posted on 05/06/2010 7:57:02 PM PDT by GulfWar1Vet
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To: artichokegrower; Viking2002; Liz; AT7Saluki; writer33
Live Oak students Daniel Galli, Dominic Maciel, Matt Dariano and Austin Carvalho wore red, white and blue T-shirts - some with the American flag and some with flag shorts - to school Wednesday, prompting administrators to ask the students to change their clothing or turn their T-shirts inside-out because it could incite a confrontation on Cinco de Mayo.

We now know more about these four than we do Hussein.

20 posted on 05/06/2010 7:58:22 PM PDT by Libloather (Tea totaler, PROUD birther, mobster, pro-lifer, anti-warmer, enemy of the state, extremist....)
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To: artichokegrower

Locally, about 200 Hispanic students walked out of Live Oak and Ann Sobrato high schools, chanting “Si se puede” and “We want respect” and disrupting traffic as they marched through Morgan Hill to demonstrate their support for Mexico.

“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.”

_______________

This is unbelievable. And respect is earned, not owed. What a bunch of upside down crap.


21 posted on 05/06/2010 7:58:29 PM PDT by Blue Collar Christian (A "tea bagger"? Say it to my face. ><BCC>)
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To: optiguy

LOL

CdM means Zip in Mexico, just another reminder of a failed Nation/State.

Sept 16 is the celebration. “Grito de Dolores” - Independence from Spain was declared in 1810. Thier independance was finally recognized by Spain on September 27, 1821.

I am surprised at the attention paid to CdM here in the States. Of course, any excuse to guzzle beer isn’t all bad, I suppose....


22 posted on 05/06/2010 7:58:45 PM PDT by ASOC (Things are not always as they appear, ask the dog chasing the car)
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To: artichokegrower
In a statement, Smith wrote: "The incident on May 5 at Live Oak High School is extremely unfortunate. While campus safety is our primary concern and administrators made decisions yesterday in an attempt to ensure campus safety, students should not, and will not, be disciplined for wearing patriotic clothing. This matter is under investigation and appropriate action will be taken."

That is a racist statement. The District is apparently under the impression that children of Hispanic origin are incapable of not reacting violently to displays of American pride. Maybe that's what they teach these kids in school... that America should be hated and Mexico should be praised. That Mexicans are superior to Americans and that it is ok to disrespect America, but if you disrespect Mexico - a third world cesspool - that it is to be expected that you will be beat up by proud Mexicans.

I've had it with this pandering to Mexicans. If they want to live here, then they'd better be proud to be Americans. If they love Mexico, then they should all move back.

I've never been more pissed off about anything before. This is the functional equivalent of Pearl Harbor. This is WAR!

23 posted on 05/06/2010 8:01:08 PM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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To: GulfWar1Vet

Amen!


24 posted on 05/06/2010 8:02:10 PM PDT by Jagdgewehr (Okay, now it's a Gadsden Flag, Bible, Guns and an American Flag tee shirt.)
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To: artichokegrower
One Mexican-American student, freshman Laura Ponce, had a Mexican flag painted on her face and chest, peeking out of her low-cut shirt. She did it because, "it's our day, the only day we can show our spirit."

Honey, you can do this every day of the year.... in MEXICO!!! GTFO!

25 posted on 05/06/2010 8:07:55 PM PDT by rock_lobsta (zero has me pining for the glory days of carter.)
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To: artichokegrower
"They can be a patriot on some other day. Not that specific day."

So can we please be patriotic on Wednesdays and maybe Saturdays after 5?

GFY!

26 posted on 05/06/2010 8:09:48 PM PDT by Altura Ct.
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To: optiguy

Doesn’t it though.


27 posted on 05/06/2010 8:14:11 PM PDT by carton253 (Ask me about Throw Away the Scabbard - a Civil War alternate history.)
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To: TXBlair

“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.”

I like it. I hope they keep it up. Maybe this will be the incident that bitch-slaps the public about political (in) correctness. When you can’t wear the flag of the country in a government institution, IN THE COUNTRY THAT YOU WERE BORN AND RAISED IN, and in the country that your parents pay taxes to and maybe got SHOT AT for, well, if that doesn’t inflame people, then maybe it’s over.


28 posted on 05/06/2010 8:17:04 PM PDT by The Antiyuppie ("When small men cast long shadows, then it is very late in the day.")
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To: artichokegrower

The whole world has gone crazy

LAST TIME I CHECK THIS COUNTRY IS THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICAN RED, WHITE AND BLUE


29 posted on 05/06/2010 8:17:24 PM PDT by proudCArepublican
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To: artichokegrower

>”We want respect”

1) Earn it with grades and accomplishments
2) “La Raza” = The Race, racists


30 posted on 05/06/2010 8:18:43 PM PDT by ROTB (Without a Christian revival, we are government slaves, or attacked from outside during armed revolt.)
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To: artichokegrower

The school needs to boot out all wetback students.
If they are illegal then send them back to Mexico.


31 posted on 05/06/2010 8:18:57 PM PDT by BuffaloJack (Comrade O has to go.)
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To: The Antiyuppie

Where does this girl think she live? Mexico or the United States where we are still Free maybe not for long but we are still Free

It is not an American Holiday ways it would be like an Irish person getting upset because on St Patty’s Day you wore an Old Navy Flag shirt how dumb are these people.

Maybe NO ONE SHOULD BE WEARING ANY TYPE OF SHIRT

I just listened to the girl who I think is this person and she said that we don’t go on 4th of July saying Via Mexico

I really think she forgets where she lives so she is saying in my mind she does not celebrate the 4th of July the birth of our nation.

Totally everyone has lost their minds


32 posted on 05/06/2010 8:24:31 PM PDT by proudCArepublican
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To: artichokegrower
My question would they school be as lenient if other students wore shirts that reflected where their heritage came from? Would they let the stars and bars be worn, or a Japanese rising sun or a Nazi swastika flag shirt? It seems to me they are giving SPECIAL treatment to a group of people who are from south of the border or who have been born here and have not assimilated into being AMERICAN.
33 posted on 05/06/2010 8:25:52 PM PDT by guitarplayer1953 (Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to GOD! Thomas Jefferson)
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To: artichokegrower
Cinco de mayo is the day the mexicans fought the French and beat them, because the french wanted payments from mexico for money borrowed and jaurez decided to welch on the loan and not pay it. All this did was infuriate Napoleon and bring in more french troops. The french then seized all of mexico and put in their own leader, Maximillian.
34 posted on 05/06/2010 8:28:08 PM PDT by BuffaloJack (Comrade O has to go.)
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To: artichokegrower
"They can be a patriot on some other day. Not that specific day."

Wrong f'ing answer.

35 posted on 05/06/2010 8:28:17 PM PDT by Drew68
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To: GulfWar1Vet

Amen, sir.


36 posted on 05/06/2010 8:28:32 PM PDT by Nea Wood (Silly liberal . . . paychecks are for workers!)
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To: artichokegrower

“It’s or day.” It’s our Country. And if you want to celebrate an Independence Day, try the Fourth of July. If you want to celebrate Mexico’s Cinco de Mayo, do so by all means. Either without comment about the Stars and Stripes, or in Mexico.

And as a point of curiosity, what the hell do they have to celebrate about Mexico? The success of their drug cartels? The centuries of inept, corrupt government? Their economy? What?


37 posted on 05/06/2010 8:32:22 PM PDT by PzLdr ("The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am" - Darth Vader)
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To: artichokegrower
Total bu LL $hi tt. This is the USA each and ever day of the year!!!! It is not mexico any day of the year. The only flags that should ever be allowed a position of respect are those that fly on the flag pole in front of the school!!!!!
38 posted on 05/06/2010 8:36:07 PM PDT by oldenuff2no (Proud vet)
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To: P-Marlowe

My son’s impression when stationed in your fair area was that the Mexican males were always spoiling for a fight.

Was he right? This was about 7 years ago.


39 posted on 05/06/2010 8:36:18 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it. Those who truly support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: artichokegrower
Last time I looked at the map this was called THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Not Mexico. The stars and stripes should be considered appropriate attire any where, any time. Period. You don't like it, leave. Seriously, leave the Country if you hate it so much you can't stand to see our flag.

Want to make a statement? Wash our flag, don't burn it.

On a related note, I saw a rather large man on a Harley the other day. His leather jacket had a large American flag on the back with the words "Try burning this one a**hole" If I could've caught him, I'd have offered to buy him a beer.

40 posted on 05/06/2010 8:39:35 PM PDT by ThunderSleeps (obama out now! I'll keep my money, my guns, and my freedom - you can keep the change.)
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To: jnsun
where a stoned buddy was slumped

Ah, mexicans. They don't need an excuse to get loaded.

41 posted on 05/06/2010 8:42:12 PM PDT by LouAvul
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To: GulfWar1Vet

I’m with you my friend. We all better do something fast . Obama and the liberals are turning this country inside out. And by the way Al Sharpton , that f-ing fraud needs a serious ass kicking too.


42 posted on 05/06/2010 8:43:38 PM PDT by sonic109
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To: artichokegrower
Locally, about 200 Hispanic students walked out of Live Oak and Ann Sobrato high schools, chanting "Si se puede" and "We want respect" and disrupting traffic as they marched through Morgan Hill to demonstrate their support for Mexico.

I know a much better way for them to express their support for Mexico.

43 posted on 05/06/2010 8:46:36 PM PDT by denydenydeny (The welfare state turns us all into zoo animals, mouths open, waiting for the next feeding.)
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To: artichokegrower

Bookmark


44 posted on 05/06/2010 8:47:54 PM PDT by dragnet2
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To: xzins
I think this Chicano superiority complex is fostered by the school systems. We've been pandering to these aliens and anchor babies for the last 20 years and the attitude of Mexicans these days is that their culture is superior to the "Anglo" culture. But they all want to live here.
45 posted on 05/06/2010 8:48:12 PM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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To: P-Marlowe

I agree. They all want to live here. And what we get from some or all is:

Break laws.
Run drugs.
Take away jobs.
Use up social resources, driving up costs.
Cause social problems and unrest.


46 posted on 05/06/2010 8:56:54 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and proud of it. Those who truly support our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: artichokegrower

I guess they had better remove the flag from the front of the school, also.


47 posted on 05/06/2010 9:28:10 PM PDT by OregonPatriot2010
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To: artichokegrower

“They can be a patriot on some other day. Not that specific day.”

patriots are patriots EVERY DAY!!


48 posted on 05/06/2010 10:36:09 PM PDT by annelizly
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Comment #49 Removed by Moderator

To: ourcountryback; xzins
not siding against the kids here, but I find it offensive when anyone wears the Stars and Stripes as decoration.

We are at war my FRiend. Expressions of patriotism in public school can be dangerous in this politically correct environment. These kids are modern day Nathan Hales who have put themselves in harms way by displaying the flag on their clothing as a symbol of their patriotism against the tide of hatred from those who despise the flag and all it has stood for for over 200 years.

Get used to it. I plan on wearing it as a "decoration" a lot more in the future and especially next May 5.

50 posted on 05/07/2010 6:30:40 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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