by Cynthia Reeves
A 13 year old middle school student in Pensacola believes he’s been unfairly suspended for wearing a Rebel flag tee-shirt to school. He believes there’s a double standard going on because a black friend wore the same shirt, but there were no consequences. David Inglett got a three day suspension today from Wedgewood Middle School. He wore the Rebel Flag shirt to school repeatedly even though teachers told him not to.
To make a point, David claims he let two friends wear his shirt, last month.
He says a white girl was told to turn it inside out, but his black friend wore it and nothing was done. A school district spokesman says no one has been able to verify that any other student ever wore the same shirt. His mother supports him even though he was suspended for being defiant.
David Inglett/Wedgewood Student: "People weren’t offended by the shirt. They don’t really know what it means. I mean we did a history project on it and learned all about it and people who know what it means really don’t care."
Anglea Banister/David’s Mother:
"If they’re doing something wrong then everybody should know its wrong and nobody should be allowed to do it."
Deputy Superintendent Norm Ross says wearing the Confederate Flag shirt is a violation of the district’s rights and responsibilities handbook. Students are not supposed to wear anything that is offensive to others or promotes violence or discrimination. David says the rules do not specifically list Rebel Flags and he believes it historical, not offensive. He and his mother plan to file a formal complaint to the Escambia County School Board.
Copyright 2005 WEAR-TV