Kid In Court Over Confederate Clothing In School

One school dress code has landed a student in court because he keeps wearing shirts with the Confederate flag on them.

One school dress code has landed a student in court because he keeps wearing shirts with the Confederate flag on them.

18 year-old Tommy DeFoe of Knoxville says wearing the shirts and Confederate belt buckles are just a part of his heritage and his rights as a southerner and an American.  DeFoe says his great great uncle served in the Confederate army and "Died for the South" in the Civil War.

The Anderson County school system where DeFoe attends sees things differently.  It has suspended him 40 times.

Whether DeFoe, or anyone else in the school system can wear clothing with the Confederate flag on it is a decision a federal jury will now make.

For DeFoe, it's a matter of free speech rights.  For the school system...a fear that wearing such items will prompt racial tension and violence.

What do you think the jury hearing this case should do? 

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  • by nick Location: roanoke rapids on Oct 8, 2008 at 10:07 AM
    When will you southerners grow and join the rest of the country. The fact is most of America and the rest of world considers the confederate flag to be a symbol of white supremacy. If you are so proud of your flag, which quite frankly is a RIP-OFF of the British flag, then why doesn't a single church in ALL of the south or deep south display the "star and bars" either inside or outside of church property. Maybe because church property is still is considered Holy Ground!!!
  • by Jesse Location: Greenville on Aug 26, 2008 at 10:06 AM
    I've seen all races wear clothing that is offensive to other races and ideals. The bottom line here is you will always meet someone in your life or see something in your life that will offend you. Given that fact, maybe it would be in our best interest to grow thicker skin. This mentality today about how we all have to walk on eggshells in order not to offend the next person is ridiculous. If I got mad at everything that offended me and made a huge stink about it, I'd have to quit my full-time job and dedicate all my time to fighting offensive material. Instead, I turn the other cheek for the common good and don't choose to make a big deal about it. Malcolm X shirts were huge in the 1980's and quite frankly, he backed violence towards caucasions, government and really anyone that didn't agree with his point of views, very offensive person but somehow the shirts were not deemed "racist" or "offensive." That is quite possibly an alternative example to the Confederate Flag shirt.
  • by mark Location: moyock on Aug 23, 2008 at 11:42 AM
    I feel that the best way to handle this type of situation is to require that public schools have their students wear uniforms. In regards to the situation concerning Tommy DeFoe, I have seen several students in the public school system wear clothing that displayed the "X" symbol and other students wearing necklaces with a charm in the shape of Africa. I guess if a White individual stands up for his/her heritage by wearing corresponding symbols then it is hate or bigotry.
  • by Tommy Location: Greenville on Aug 14, 2008 at 06:43 PM
    This is just another example of the double standards imposed on white Americans. Do as I say but not as we do.
  • by Jeffrey Location: Williamston, NC on Aug 14, 2008 at 06:35 AM
    What a joke. If this was a black person wearing the confederate flag would anyone say anything? I think not! The boy obviously simply has a love for his heritage. If school systems want to enforce dress code policies like this then they should require school uniforms.
  • by Ted Location: Greenville on Aug 13, 2008 at 09:25 PM
    I have no problem with those who wish to wear or display a Confederate Flag, but if the school system has a dress code everyone has to abide by it. Luckily when I was in school people still had sense and were not as sensitive and tender as they are today.
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