—UPDATE: Tom Bevan of Real Clear Politics points to what could become the watchwords of ordinary Americans fed up with the intimidation tactics of the PC Police: “There will be no apology.” As someone who has had the “racist” epithet or its variations hurled at me numerous times over the years, for no reason other than my own political disagreement with the accuser, I will absolutely be using this phrase when the need next arises. Remember: “There will be no apology.” Thank you, James Crowley and Mrs. Dariano, for your courage, insight and strong sense of morality.—
NBC News reports that five students at a California public high school were ordered by its vice-principal to remove or reverse clothing featuring the American flag on Cinco De Mayo. Mexican students said they felt offended and demanded an apology, while school officials called the display “incendiary.” Rather than ditch the clothing, they left school to avoid the punishment of suspension, as threatened by administrators.
While details will likely continue to emerge, this incident appears to be troubling on several levels. That Mexican students would see the American flag as a sign of disrespect and an offense reveals that they do not self-identify as Americans, favoring instead the identity of their own ethnic heritage. It may even signal outright hostility to their new country of residence. The young students gravitated instinctively to victomology language, essentially claiming aggrieved status under conventions of political correctness.
One student said that wearing an American flag on Cinco De Mayo would be as if Mexican students wore the Mexican flag on July 4th. (Side note: Ever notice how people rarely say “Independence Day” anymore?). The sensitive young soul missed a crucial piece of this logical puzzle she tried to frame. Yes, it would be the same – if American students came to Mexico and wore the American flag shirts on the Mexican national holiday (while enjoying the host nation’s public education services, naturally).
Adults should know better, but the rationale they seem to have employed is informed by political correctness and Diversity doctrine. Diversity – the sociopolitical movement, not the dictionary word suggesting variety – rejects assimilation in favor of multiculturalism, in which separate but equal identity groups comprise the sociological sphere. Political relations among them are often more competitive than cooperative, animated more by emotion, suspicion and disharmony than reason, charity and unity.
In this case, a logical basis for action was irrelevant, because the correct emotional response on the part of the administration dictated hyper-sensitivity towards the historically aggrieved party claiming offense, at the expense of the historically oppressive party standing accused. One of the offending American students is partially Hispanic, and the American students’ families say an apology will not be forthcoming.
The families also have met or are planning to meet with school district officials. According to a district statement, it does not encourage or discourage the wearing of patriotic clothing, but did say the school acted out of an interest in ensuring safety, and failed to condemn the school’s action. The situation is “under review,” but the district superintendent or school board must act wisely and decisively to this situation.
At a minimum, if the facts as initially reported are correct, the superintendent or board should strongly consider reprimanding or suspending Vice Principal Miguel Rodriguez. He should also receive remedial instruction on the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, and should be required to attend a diversity training workshop in which he can learn that “diversity” does not involve censorship of patriotic expression. The superintendent or board, if they feel these actions are not enough, should also considering terminating Mr. Rodriguez’s employment. He clearly lacks the good judgment a person in his position should demonstrate.
All in all, a troubling story, but not terribly surprising. I imagine these types of stories will only occur with increasing frequency in the years ahead. It’s my understanding that the majority of children in Arizona’s public schools are of Hispanic origin, and I would take an informed guess that that’s the case in California as well.