It seems South Carolina folks take their Patriotism serious, including 18 year-old York Comprehensive High School senior Peyton Robinson, who told all his friends and family that the school’s administrator told him on Wednesday that he couldn’t fly his flags anymore.
“He said, ‘We’re having some issues. Some people were complaining about the flags in your truck,’” Robinson told WBTV-TV. He went on to say that the administrator told him that the flags could “possibly” be offensive, then ordered him to take them down before returning to school. Apparently Robinson didn’t need to remove them, because at some point during the day on Wednesday, a school official removed the bolts securing both the American flag and the MIA/POW flag and laid them both in the bed of his truck, “when I wasn’t even there.”
Officials announced before the end of the school day, that flags such as Robinson’s were safety concerns and could not be flown any longer. Superintendent Vernon Prosser told WSOC-TV that the fear is that they could block the view of other drivers and cause a wreck.
Robinson, who has relatives that have served, was pretty upset. ”I was pretty mad,” he told WBTV. “I don’t see how it’s a problem. Nobody has ever complained about it before.”
“I’d understand if it was the Confederate flag or something that might offend somebody,” he added. “I wouldn’t do that. But an American flag — that’s our country’s flag. I have every right to do it. I don’t see a safety issue. I mean, I understand it’s a big flag — it’s 4 by 6 — but nobody has ever complained about it being in their way or anything.”
Thanks to good ol’ social media, Robinson hit up his Facebook page on Wednesday and let everyone know what was happening at his school, and fellow students took up the torch of injustice, driving back to the school that night with flags flying proudly from their vehicles.
“I’ll keep fighting,” Robinson told WSOC Wednesday night. “I’m not letting it go; I won’t go down without a fight.”
It seems many of his classmates agreed because Thursday morning in a show of support for Robinson, more than 70 vehicles pulled into the parking with flags flying proudly.
Principal Christopher Black told WSOC on that he would be asking all the students to remove their flags, but it seems that just a few short hours after that amazing display of patriotism, there was a change of heart.
“Do [sic] to the outstanding display of patriotism through peaceful demonstration, it is apparent to us that many are not happy about this policy,” the school said in a statement. “School officials have reviewed the standing policy regarding flags and have decided that an exception will be made for the American flag, as long as the size of the flag(s) does not create a driving hazard.”
The state Highway Patrol told WSOC the York students’ flags are legal.