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Teen Suspended Over Confederate Flag On Vehicle (Photo)

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A Michigan high school student was reportedly suspended after repeatedly taking a Confederate flag to school.

Ryan Delicato, 17, was suspended on May 5 for flying the Confederate flag on the back on his pickup truck that he uses to drive to school, according to WDIV ClickOnDetroit.

"It’s kind of bull crap," he told the news station.

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The superintendent at Warren Mott High School in Warren, Michigan, said this was the third time the teenager brought the flag upon school grounds. On May 4, Ryan, a senior at the school, was told that he would be sent home if he brought it again.

"They said I was harming other kid’s education and everything because it’s a distraction," Ryan explained.

Ryan has a different view of the flag.

"It’s for our southern heritage," Delicato said. "Not for race. Nothing like that."

However, various students and parents disagreed.

"He might as well ride around with a white sheet on his head," parent Ben Gillery said.

Approximately 30 percent of Warren Mott High School consists of minority students, and 14 percent of the total enrollment identifies as Black, according to U.S. News & World Report.

“He thought it was a slap in the face that a kid could come to his school with that flag and nothing is done about it,” Gillery told WDIV.

Many students threatened to protest if no actions were taken against the 17-year-old. At one poit, a student even cut the flag down from the truck himself.

"They’re saying I have no freedom of speech in school and I think that’s wrong," Ryan said.

Gary Delicato, Ryan’s father, said the situation has been taken the "wrong way" and that his son’s suspension was not necessary.

"I understand that people have some issues with the flag, I understand that, but we can’t all stop doing things just because somebody doesn’t like something," Gary said.

Although the school said they respect the First Amendment, policy forbids students from bringing materials onto school grounds that could be considered disruptive.

The superintendent added that Ryan would be suspended again followed by a harsher discipline if he continues bringing the flag to school. Ryan said he will probably not bring the flag to school again, as he does not want to be suspended so close to graduation.  

Sources: WDIV ClickOnDetroit, U.S. News & World Report / Photo Credit: WDIV ClickOnDetroit

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