When a Chicago-area mother learned that her son had failed to stand for the pledge of allegiance, she was upset at him. She had raised him to have pride in his country and did not understand why he kept saying “America sucks.” But because his school denied the boy’s choice to sit for the pledge of allegiance, which is his right, she is even more outraged.
15-year-old Shemar Cooper did not want to participate in the Pledge of Allegiance that was held during his Spanish language class on August 26. The Eisenhower High School student from Blue Island, Illinois refused to stand up and. His teacher ordered Shemar to rise to his feet, but the teen continued to refuse. Then he told the teacher loud enough for every other student to hear, that he did not want to because “America sucks.”
Because the boy’s mother, Kelley Porter, did not appreciate her son’s behavior, she apologized to the teacher for how Shemar spoke. But she refused to apologize for his choice to protest against the Pledge of Allegiance because it is his constitutional right.
When the boy returned to his Spanish class, the family figured everything had been worked out. But when Shemar refused to stand again for the Pledge, the teacher physically tried to pull Shemar out of his seat.
The teacher never should have used physical force against the boy and Porter reported the incident to the Blue Island police department. And she threatened to press charges against the Spanish teacher.
Although she doesn’t agree with the boy’s use of language, she is proud that he is making a statement. Like Colin Kaepernick, who Shemar idolizes, he is speaking out against black oppression and police violence against black people.
Porter wanted to point out that her family served America proudly. Her father fought for freedom in World War II.
Shemar doesn’t care. He wants things to change.
“America doesn’t respect blacks,” Shemar told WGN. “Until they stop killing us, I’m not going to stand up.”
Porter added, “We don’t hate America. It’s the behaviors that are put out from some of the people towards black people that we disapprove of.”
Although Shemar and his mother refuse to admit that they are doing this in tandem with the NFL protest of the National Anthem, they occurred around the same time.
Meanwhile, the school principal of Eisenhower High School released a public statement in response to the boy’s unpatriotic treatment of the Pledge.
“Eisenhower High School takes any allegations of violations of students rights seriously. We respect students’ First Amendment right to not stand for the Pledge of Allegiance.”
Because Shemar won this battle, his mother wants to push harder. She is calling that the principal or school district suspend the teacher who wanted the teen to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance. And the principal was forced to bend and is looking into the incident further.
Do you think teens should have the choice to sit or stand during the National Anthem or Pledge?
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