A video circulating on social media platform X, formerly Twitter, this week depicted a young elementary school student in Colorado Springs, Colorado being removed from class over having a Gadsden Flag patch on his backpack.
The clip appeared to be recorded by 12-year-old Jaiden’s mother as she, her son, and a school administrator discussed the boy being pulled from class at The Vanguard School that day because of the patch.
According to the staffer at the Colorado charter school, the patch was “disruptive to the classroom environment,” as she claimed it has “origins with slavery.”
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Jaiden’s mother disputed the school staff member throughout the meeting, arguing that the flag originated during the American Revolution as a symbol of the 13 colonies’ fight against the British Crown and did not promote slavery.
The video opened with Jaiden, his mother and the unnamed school administrator sitting down for a meeting in her office to discuss the child’s dismissal from class. The staff member stated, “So the reason that they do not want the flag – the reason we do not want the flag displayed – is due to its origins with slavery, and slave trade.”
“The Gadsden Flag?” the mother asked, to which the staff member replied, “The ‘Don’t Tread on Me.’”
After the mother asked what would happen if Jaiden didn’t remove the patch, the staffer declared, “The bag can’t go back if it’s got the patch on it, cause we can’t have that in and around other kids.”
Jaiden’s mother pushed back on the decision, saying, “Yeah it has nothing to do with slavery, that’s like the revolutionary war patch that was displayed when they were fighting the British.” She asked if maybe the woman was mistaking it for the Confederate Flag.
The administrator responded, “I am here to enforce the policy that was provided by the district and definitely, you have every right not to agree with it.”
The mother and Jaiden confronted the educator over the fact that other kids have patches on their backpacks. The mother added that she did not understand the policy that was being enforced.
The staff member then claimed she would put Jaiden’s mother in touch with Jeff Yocum, The Vanguard School’s Director of Operations.
Libertas Institute President Connor Boyack obtained images of the email correspondence between Yocum and Jaiden’s mother after her meeting at the school and shared them on X.
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As the emails revealed, Yocum cited reports from mainstream news outlets which linked the Gadsden Flag to racism because it was created by a slaveowner and associated with other displays of intolerance.
Yocum cited outlet The Conversation, which featured a quote from Iowa State University graphic design scholar Paul Bruski, who said, “Because of its creator’s history and because it is commonly flown alongside ‘Trump 2020’ flags, the Confederate battle flag and other white-supremacist flags, some may now see the Gadsden flag as a symbol of intolerance and hate – or even racism.”
Yocum also shared a Washington Post article detailing a case involving the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission mandating the U.S. Postal Service to investigate a complaint made by one of its employees. The employee claimed that coworker wearing a Gadsden Flag hat to work amounted to racial discrimination.
The EEOC never made any judgment on whether racial discrimination came from the flag in that specific case, and on its website, claimed it “did not find that the Gadsden Flag in fact is a racist symbol.”
However, it claimed that the flag has been “interpreted to convey racially-tinged messages in some contexts.”
That association seemed to meet the standard to justify Yocum and The Vanguard School’s decision against Jaiden.
Boyack also shared a portion of the correspondence that allegedly showed Yocum claiming that the patch violated the school’s policy outlawing symbols that “Refer to drugs, tobacco, alcohol, or weapons.”
Both Yocum and the school have not yet responded to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
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