CHRISTIANSBURG, VIRGINIA — Students at a Virginia high school were suspended this week after holding a rally to protest new school policies banning their right to celebrate their antiquated Southern pride by displaying the Confederate flag.
A high school in Christiansburg, Virginia instituted a new policy this fall prohibiting Confederacy symbols on cars in the school's parking lot. The school already bans clothing deemed insensitive to various social groups.
Students argued that the establishment was infringing on their good ole' God-given, First Amendment rights, but the school refused to back down.
After 24 students dressed in clothing embellished with the divisive flag rallied in front of their school to protest the policy, the school swiftly slapped them with suspensions. Twenty-one of the 24 students were only given one-day suspensions on Thursday, but after things became rowdier, two were slapped with a three-day out-of-school suspension for "threatening and abusive language."
One student told The Guardian newspaper that she thinks the new policies are preventing Americans from appreciating real southern culture and her rich heritage.
The school cites past incidents of racial tension within the school as the reason for the ban. Of the 1,100 students at the high school, 83 percent are white and 8 percent are black.
Twitter reactions have been mixed, with some supporting the school's position, with others failing to see why celebrating some interpretations of Southern culture is problematic.