Students at Coosa High School in Rome, Ga., claim they were suspended for protesting the Confederate Flag.
According to local station WGCL, students were caught on camera waving a Confederate flag and they were reportedly not disciplined. When several Black, white and Latino students decided to protest the flag, parents said the children were suspended. However, students allege the white students who protested were not suspended, only the students of color.
Student organizer Jaylynn Murray told the outlet, “I feel the Confederate flag should not be flown at all. It is a racist symbol and it makes me feel disrespected.”
Deziya Fain, another student organizer, also added, “I felt really disrespected how the school didn’t do anything about it and when we are not allowed to wear BLM (Black Lives Matter) stuff and they are allowed to carry a racist flag around.”
Murray and Fain said they began making plans to protest against racism after the administration didn’t discipline the students who were flying the Confederate flag and allegedly spewing racial slurs against Black students.
WGCL reports that a parent of one of the students at the high school provided them with an announcement over the school intercom where an administrator warned students that they would be punished if they tried to protest.
“The administration is aware for tomorrow’s planned protest,” the administrator announced. “Police will be present here at school and if students insist on encouraging this kind of activity they will be disciplined for encouraging unrest.”
Subsequently, the students planning to protest went to the front office to speak with administrators. It reportedly then turned into an argument after the students complained about the lack of disciplinary action taken against the students using racial slurs.
As a result, the students say only their Black peers were suspended even though students of all races confronted administrators. On Friday (Oct. 8), they reportedly joined together to protest outside the school throughout the day. The ones who weren’t suspended chose to skip school with the permission and support of their parents.
“All the African Americans they suspended them, and they didn’t suspend them.” Lilyan Huckaby told the station. “They didn’t suspend me and I was yelling and loud. It’s because I’m white. We’re not allowed to wear Black Lives Matter shirts or the LGBTQ flag, but kids can have Confederate flags and they have said nothing.”
Parents of the suspended students say they’re upset their problems have gone unresolved for so long. They are also angry their kids will have to miss homecoming because of the suspension that extends from October 8 through the 22nd.