Students Forced To Take Down Rebel Flags That Honored Fallen Classmate

Supporters fly Rebel flags after the banning of the flags from the Waldron School District

Supporters fly Rebel flags after the banning of the flags from the Waldron School District

Two weeks after the banning of the Rebel flag stirred rallies in Waldron, the Siloam Springs School District banned Confederate flags from its parking lots, the school district’s assistant superintendent said.

Some students were flying the flags last week to honor a classmate who was killed in a car crash, parents told 5NEWS.

Siloam Springs High School administrators early last week forced several students to take down Confederate flags flying on their vehicles in the school’s parking lot. No one was disciplined, although the students could have faced unspecified disciplinary measures if they continued to fly the flags, said Jody Wiggins, assistant superintendent.

The students voluntarily complied with administrators’ requests to stop, Wiggins said.

A parent told 5NEWS the students were honoring Zach Long, a graduate from the school who recently died. The parent said students were upset because they believed the school handbook did not allow for administrators to stop them from flying flags in the parking lot.

Wiggins said the action falls under the administrators’ right to stop any disruptive actions on school grounds. The flags were disruptive, he said.

Shortly after students starting flying the flags, administrators received calls from parents and students who considered the flags offensive and disruptive to the school’s learning environment, Wiggins said.

34 comments

  • Jan

    Exactly how do flags disrupt the learning environment? It’s a piece of cloth and like it or not, a piece of history. People need to get over it already.

    • Loretta Murray

      It don’t seem to matter what it is ppl are going to complain about something. I made a comment to my stepson the other day that if 10 ppl was to put a flag with the 10 commandments on it and 1 person complained the 10 ppl would take it down, instead of fighting for their rights.

  • Bill

    I still teach what the flag stands for. Ever since 1865 the federal government violates the Constitution daily.

  • What's really important

    Seems people are getting more upset over the flags than they are upset about all the violence threats in area schools. THOSE are disruptive to learning, not a flag flying off the back of a vehicle way out in the parking lot.

    People need to figure out what the priorities are.

  • Leten Uno

    The rights to fly the ‘confederate flag’ have been defined by the supreme court. It is legal on public property but on in public forum if an objection is raised.
    The flag we know today was never an official flag and was largely absent during the civil war. It was used as a battle flag yet most historians agree did not represent slavery per say.
    In 1956 it gained popularity with Brown vs US, forced school integration. In fact, it was far more popular and more widely used as a protest of forced integration than during the civil war.
    Several national organization who are officially recognized as non-profit by the IRS have the flag as their official flag. And it’s stated purpose is ‘Southern Heritage’. Knowing the true history of the flag and having objections toward it as a sign of degradation of African Americans is shallow. You can take down he flag in public forum but it still sings in their hearts, ‘Im from the south and I’m proud of it.

    • Ps

      So Leten the flag was mostly flown in protest to forced integration, but having objections to this flag as a degredation to African Americans is shallow? How does that work? The LGBT flag was not a symbol that enslaved a whole race of people.

  • SFC Hale (Retired)

    I few both U.S and Rebel Flags from the back of my truck on Military installations all over the U.S. and never had anyone complain. What is the big deal all of a sudden?
    You know yellow cars offend me! Maybe I sould call and conplain….

  • Aim

    Kids can’t read, write, do math and have no life coping skills but we are concerned with them flying the “rebel” flag on school grounds! To be correct it is illegal to actually fly a “Confederate” flag so please do some journalism before posting a story. The rebel flag is a variation. I am offended by LGBT flags but if I complain I am being intolerant and discriminatory!!

    • Señor

      Get ready for a Mexican American President. By 2050 Hispanics will be the majority in the United States. The browning of America. You can either fight it or embrace it and profit from it.

    • jason

      get over urself yankee souths gona rise again im with the confederates i am a redneck i fly the rebel flag on my truck and land

  • Dee

    When are people going to realize that this flag is offensive to some races. Children should not have to go to school and feel discriminated against. This flag is a symbol of a part of are nation that refused to give up slavery. Even after the civil war was over we still tried to keep blacks and minorities from having the same rights and equalities as whites. School is a place for learning, anything that disrupts this or hinders this process should be banned. This a great country where we have freedoms of speech and
    opinions, but school is no place for this. Why do people want to fly a flag that hate groups use in their demonstrations?

    • Toby

      The Civil war wasn’t about slaves. It was about the federal government overstepping there boundaries and taxing the heck out of the South. And I would like to know what hate group’s your taking about that’s flying the rebal flag?

      • Joseph Bryan Judd

        What hate groups fly the “rebal” flag? Hmmm…. lets see Toby I remember that one group with the pointy white hats and robes. What was their name? I’m sure someone with your obvious knowledge of history could remember some hate group that lugs around the flag of a bunch of traitors who fought for the right to enslave other humans.

  • Theresa Duncan

    This is ludicrous!!!!! Just because some have brought shame and violence using this flag should not cause the ones who respect and live it to give it up!! When we do this the bad guy wins!!!! Goidness it IS a part of US History!!!!! Shame on all who try to dictate like this!!!

  • Señor

    Did you know in some schools students have to wear uniforms and can’t wear anything with name brands on them. The reason they do this is to make school a learning environment with as little distractions as possible. My condolences go out to the family that lost their son.

  • Kassie Russell

    Well I think the Mexican flag is disrespectful! This is America not mexico! So make sure they take there flags off there cars back window!!! Now we couldn’t do that could we?! No because that messing with there beliefs!! Right? An there culture! Right? Right! Now leave those kids alone!

  • senor

    I’m sure if the Mexican flag was being flown from the back of their trucks at school they would be asked to take down their flags too. If not they should be asked to. On a side note the Mexican flag is not a symbol of rascim. I’m not saying everybody who has a confederate flag is a rascist but it does offend some people and it is a distraction to what you are trying to accomplish at school.

  • deb Stephens

    I think whoever puts the Mexican flag any where on a vehicle on school grounds should be told to remove them, it’s only fair. There are more disruptive things going on than these flags, but, no one has any control over the bomb threats, so, they control what they can,

  • atc8824

    Get over it people you fly your flag we will fly ours.How can this flag be anymore insulting than an American flag with Obama’s face on the flag or his cronies burning OUR flag?The flag stands for the South not hate as you people call it.Wanna stop hate then make Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton be quiet because all those two jokers do is spread hate.

  • Aim

    Since there are so many people who are “offended” by the rebel flag why don’t they explain just exactly why it offends them. And the answer of “because it stands for slavery” or “it has been used by hate groups” is a cop out so be more creative and explain why you personally do not like the flag.
    Abraham Lincoln didn’t emancipate the slaves of the South he emancipated the slaves of the North because at the time the South had separated from the Unoin. Everyone focuses on the South because of slavery but if you actually study the South before the Civil War and during you would get a more interesting picture. Instead of just spouting your hatred or dislike for the rebel flag because that is what your friends do or your parents do why don’t you educate yourself and form your own opinion.

  • senor

    I personally don’t have anything against the rebel flag, but schools have rules and regulations why not abide by them. I don’t believe they are trying to restrict their freedom of speech. If you want to fly your flag when you leave school grounds I don’t see anything wrong with that. That’s what makes our nation great is our freedom of speech, but we also have to remeber not everyone believes or thinks the same. Life is good.

  • Marty Swigart

    Mexicans are taking our jobs and everything else. It offends me take it down. The kids were just honoring a lost friend. Plus its freedom of expression and speech protected by the 1st amendment of the United States Constitution.

  • shawn

    To the schools that are requesting that the students take down thier rebel flags. I hope you realize that the arkansas state flag was taken in part from the confederate flag and the single star above arkansas represents the confederate states of america . That being said maybe the schools should have tho remove the arkansas state flag also.

  • Stormie

    Those flags was not meant to disrespect anyone. They were flown for Zach Long and our school had no right to have us remove them.

  • senor

    What job has a Mexican taking from you? Mowing lawns? Working in a chicken plant? Doing migrant work? Cooking and washing dishes in your favorite restaurant? Or housekeeping in your favorite hotel you love to stay at on vacation? What job has a Mexican taking from you? As for the freedom of speech issue I ask you when you go to work do you not have to abide by the rules of your work place or are you just allowed to say and do whatever you want to do? I’m guessing your not. So, why would you not expect your children to abide by the rules of the school. At some point in time we all have rules to follow or people to answer to.

  • sam

    What do you think of when you see the flag above? What message do you think it sends?

    Racism? Slavery? Hatred? White supremacy?

    Something worse?

    Now, what do you see when you look at the flag? What is actually on the flag?

    The color Red? White? Blue? Thirteen stars?

    Is that all? See anything else?

    Look closer and take some time to actually think about what you are seeing. Examine every detail of the flag and it’s design, because the layout of the contents of this flag actually portrays the true message the flag is sending.

    And for the record… neither the design nor the content have anything to do with racism, slavery, hatred or white supremacy… or anything worse!

    All the COLOR could be removed from this flag, leaving just the outline of the details, and the true message the design is sending could still be determined by anyone with a basic knowledge of history and an ounce of common sense.

    .

    First of all, this flag is NOT the “Confederate Flag.” It is the “Battle Flag of Northern Virginia.” This design, however, is the one most synonymous with the term, and the one used in various forms on many of the other flags that were flown by the Confederate States. It is also the one most hated by those who are completely and totally ignorant of what it stands for.

    So take another look at the flag and answer this very simple question : Do you see a big letter “X” anywhere on the flag? What if I were to lay that X down on its side like this? : Do you see it now? The X is formed by the big, blue bands which are outlined with white trim.

    Now take another look at the flag. On this big “X” there are thirteen white stars. See them? Do you know what these thirteen stars represent? They represent the thirteen original, united colonies from which the United States began. Each one of these colonies had its own system of self government… until the start of ‘northern aggression’ when the northern states began trying to usurp authority over the southern states. This was the main cause of the Civil War.

    Point of fact : The thirteen stars on this flag appear to lie on the blue X… but in reality, the X lies on the stars, allowing them to shine through.

    Now, a simple question : Do you remember from your grade-school years how the teachers would sometimes ask you to circle the right answers or picture on a work page, or to put an X on a picture or word or other item that didn’t belong in a group? That is the same concept this flag is designed around; the stars are laid out in the pattern of an X, and the blue bands are put on the thirteen stars to show that the southern states no longer wanted to be a part of the union with the northern states. In simpler terms, the message of flag’s design is simply this… CROSS US OUT of your Union! The southern states withdrew from the union in a movement called “secession,” which led to the Civil War.

    That is the only message this flag is sending!

    That is all there is to it!

    It is just that simple!

    If this flag actually represented slavery, hatred, white supremacy, or something worse, as so many biased and uneducated people so foolishly believe, then it’s design would reflect that by incorporating images of those whom it stood against, and there would be a big X on their images.

    But that is NOT what is on this flag!

    And that is NOT the message this flag sends!

    This flag is NOT racist! NEVER has been! NEVER will be!

    And as I stated earlier, all that people need to have to be able to see and understand this obvious truth is a basic knowledge of history and an ounce of common sense!

    _____________________________________________________________________________________

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