Peyton Robinson, a senior at York Comprehensive High School in York, South Carolina, had an American flag and a POW-MIA flag hanging on the back of his truck, but recently school officials removed the flags.
"Just proud to be an American,” he told WBTV. "[A school administrator] said we're having some issues. Some people were complaining about the flags in your truck, possibly offend them. [The administrator] asked me to take it down.” School officials said the large flags were a safety hazard because they could block the view of other drivers.
The community rallied around Robinson and his flags and staged a demonstration. Dozens of students and adults waved flags outside of the school on May 14.
“It just means a lot to me to be out here doing this,” said Keith Lyon, whose father fought in World War II. “They shouldn’t have done that, it was wrong.”
Eventually the school gave into the protestor’s demands.
The school district made an announcement on its website:
"Due to the outstanding display of patriotism through peaceful demonstration, it is apparent to us that many are not happy about this policy. School officials have reviewed the standing policy regarding flags and have decided that an exception will be made for the American flag, as long as the size of the flag(s) does not create a driving hazard.
“We appreciate the passion and pride of all who have called or come by YCHS over the past 24 hours. America was founded by Patriots who led positive change in a myriad of ways. We believe today is a great example of peaceful demonstration leading to positive change. This is the very process we advocate in our Social Studies classrooms and the fabric of American citizenship. Thank you for helping us as we educate the students of our community.”
James Crump said, "We're just glad we got this victory today, and it just proves if you stand up for your country, you stand up for what you believe in, things get changed.”
Robinson, who has relatives who have served, said he didn’t care if he was punished — he would continue flying the flag. “I’ve always been taught to stand up for what’s right,” he said.
Image via WBTV