California Teacher Finds Student’s American Flag Drawing Offensive

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A California art class teacher banned a student’s drawing of the American flag with the words “God Bless America,” saying she found it “offensive.” The same teacher had praised a picture of Obama drawn by a different student in the class.

The student is 13-year-old Terrin Hathaway. The school is Gavilan View Middle School in Salinas in the Santa Rita school district.

The girl’s mother told FOX News Radio that her daughter “had drawn the flag and was sketching the letters, ‘God bless America,’ when the teacher confronted her. She said, ‘You can’t draw that – that’s offensive.’” But another student in the same art class drew a picture of Obama and was praised by the teacher. “The picture of Barack Obama was in red, white and blue hues,” Hathaway said. “The teacher said it was great. But when it comes to the flag – all of a sudden it was offensive?”
Mrs. Hathaway said she took her concerns to the principal – and he was “floored” and apologized for what happened. He arranged a meeting with the Hathaways and the teacher. “My husband point-blank asked her what she found offensive about the picture – the American flag or the words, ‘God Bless America,’” Mrs. Hathaway said. “The teacher didn’t say a word.”
Mrs. Hathaway said, “But this was not a political class. This was not a religious class. This was an art class. My daughter wasn’t trying to break any rules and she wasn’t trying to create a scene. She was just expressing her view and saying this is America and I want God to bless it.”
Mike Brusa, the superintendent of schools, told FOX in a written statement that he had contacted the principal and that the issue “was taken care of to their (the parent’s) satisfaction.” But Hathaway said her daughter has yet to receive an apology – and in fact – the teacher told the girl that she should not have gotten her parents involved in the matter.
“My daughter felt like her rights were being trampled on – she was doing what she thought was right.” she said. “It’s disturbing. It really is disturbing. When I was in junior high we didn’t have a lot of the problems they are having now. We were allowed to speak our mind. It’s absolutely devastating for me. Last time I looked, this is America. This is still a free country.”
[Source: Education News]
Here’s contact info on Gavilan Middle School:

  • Principal: John Gutierrez
  • Address: 18250 Van Buren Avenue, Salinas, CA 93906-4300
  • Phone: (831) 443-7212
  • Fax: (831) 443-0908


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0 responses to “California Teacher Finds Student’s American Flag Drawing Offensive

  1. That government union goon “teacher” needs to be fired.
    The courts have long held that students have 1st Amendment rights when it comes to expression.
    God, what is happening to our country? It seems as if it’s rapiidly coming unravelled.

  2. Screw these aholes trying to destroy our country…fly your flag at home, wear American flags on your clothing. Heck, at this point I’m tempted to get an American flag tattooed on my forehead TAKE THAT!!

  3. she needs to be canned!

  4. Thomas Simmons

    Per Hannity bid tonight, I bid $1,000 for the pic…to go to the T Hathaway College Fund…
    She is my hero and makes me proud to be an American.

  5. There is nothing wrong with drawing an American flag, but in all fairness, we are not reviewing the entire story. Timing is the real issue here. Students, who have never worn a flag on Independence Day decided to wear one on the day that Mexican Americans celebrated their heritage – Cinco de Mayo. Why did they suddenly decide on this particular day to show their patriotism? It is reasonable to believe that these students used our flag as a tool to protest a minority celebrating their heritage. It would be like me wearing an American and going to an Irish bar on St. Patrick Day in protest of the St. Patrick Day celebration. I seriously doubt that I could get my fan*y out of that bar in one piece. The school reacted quickly to defuse the situation and tensions were high. On this day, as well, Terrin Hathaway decided to draw the American flag in her classroom. Did she suddenly feel an urge to be patriotic? Or did she decide to defy and protest the school’s decision regarding flag wearing by drawing the flag. The student had to have known that in an art class, whatever you draw; it is visible to the entire class. I personally believe that people have the right to celebrate their heritage in peace without being frowned upon as if what you are doing is a threat to our country. I love the diversity of this country. I like being able to go to an Italian festival, a Greek festival, Irish festival… the more the merrier.

    • I don’t care what the reason is – what you gonna have the mind/thought police come after me now? This is the USA and we have the First Amendment. If they did do this out of protest, that is protected as well by First Amendment.
      If you are going to get your feelings hurt by seeing the American Flag on your “special day”, get your arse outta here.

      • You do have the right to protest political beliefs – actually any beliefs. But the rules in a school are different. You have the right in this country to protest the fact that marijuana is illegal, or to protest against those who abort babies, but there is a time and place for this – grade school is not one of them.

        • So how come the schools in AZ let the kids leave school and protest in the streets over the AZ immigration law?
          Yeah, we all know the rules are different in liberal-government controlled schools…

  6. bouldery,
    The reasons flags were drawn or worn don’t matter.
    This is the United States of America, not North Korea (well, not yet, anyway) and we don’t suspend the Constitution for a day just because some people might be offffffffffended.
    Besides, if the sight of an American flag in America is offensive to those who aren’t from here, then they can go back to wherever it is they came from, and they won’t be offended anymore.

    • Dave,
      I disagree. The reason why you do something means more than the act itself. If one of my friends said to me “you know bouldery, you’re a crazy S.O.B.” and then patted me on the back, I would be flattered, but if someone called me that word in anger, I would get upset.

      • boulder,
        What a curious reasoning you use, if one can even call it “reasoning.” By your logic, if it “offends” someone, then the Constitution be damned. It’s all about hurting people’s FEELINGS. Well, your logic works both ways. The feelings of Americans who love this country and the flag also get HURT by persons in the United States who refuse to assimilate as past generations of immigrants had done, and instead insist on bi-lingualism and carrying the Mexican flag in pro-illegal immigration demonstrations. By your logic, then, bi-lingualism and the Mexican flag should be banned.
        Your inane comments offend me. Therefore, I shall honor your stupid logic by banning you forever from my blog. Cheers!

      • The Angry White Woman

        Okay bouldery, imagine my square-toed, size 7 Roper’s Cowgirl Boot up your ass while I sing, “you know bouldery, you’re a crazy S.O.B.”

        • The Angry White Woman

          And by the way, I’m having a real hard time gettin’ worked up over what a junior high art teacher thinks(?).

  7. Boulder is a prime example of why our Country is in the mess we see today-

  8. boulderhead,
    Eowyn has just provided you with a very pointed lesson as to what happens when one starts screwing around with the rights of others to express themselves as they see fit, no matter whether you agree with them or not.
    I sincerely hope you have learned something valuable here tonight, as it might just be the one thing that stands between you and becoming a permanent slave to the government.
    Something tells me that concept is miles over your head, and you are having difficulty relating the two.
    Think really hard, as it might just come to you.

  9. Bouldery,
    I have not commented on this subject but feel I should throw in my two cents. You are right. The flags of all nationalities fly freely in this country. We are a nation of immigrants, legal immigrants.
    On Cinco De Mayo the Mexicans celebrate and honor their country and when I lived in Miami I went to the Cuban restaurants and helped them celebrate. At one of the restaurants we took a Cuban flag and an American flag and hung the American flag above the Cuban flag and no one had a problem with that.
    Those flags hanging there did not mean we were honoring some government or political system–we honored the people, those that actually make up a country. Notice I said we hung the American flag above the Cuban flag–We did that because the Cubans are grateful for us allowing them to come here.
    I believe this is America and since it is America and we are made up of different cultures, we honor all those cultures. However, your suggestion that the teacher was only diffusing a dangerous situation suggests that I am not allowed to walk down the street in protest to the current administration because it might cause a situation.
    This is still America and we still have the right to agree or disagree with any individual as long as we do it peacefully.
    There was no suggestion in either school that a situation might occur; it was the teacher who made the decision and therefore violated the student’s rights by ordering them to honor a foreign country.
    The Mexicans that live here are privileged to be in this country just as I am privileged to have been born here, but this is America and if I wish to honor the people of this country by flying my flag on Cinco De Mayo, then I should be and I am free to do so.
    Conversely, our anglo Saxon students born and raised in this country are still citizens first and students second, and no school authority has the right to admonish them for their patriotism, even if that patriotism offends a few illegal worthless law breakers demanding rights they don’t deserve and haven’t earned.
    If the teacher wished to diffuse a situation then she should have stopped all celebrations, not just those that honor the people of America. You may be correct, the students were in protest, but unfortunately, that is their right under our constitution, It is not a school right to circumvent our constitution for the expedience of diffusing an imaginary situation.
    The students showed their dissatisfaction for the Mexican students demanded superiority .
    The current Hispanic population living here legally have earned the honor of presenting their heritage to the American people as a symbol of their gratefulness for this country being magnanimous enough to allow them to come here. However, many Hispanic students are here illegally and have not earned that right and do not have the right to demand anything from the American people.
    I am against illegal immigration and I stand by the students of America who demand immigrants come here by our invitation, not because we owe them something.
    Yes, we’re a nation of immigrants but not illegal immigrants. When the South American people can cross our borders legally and apply for citizenship, then they have rights under our laws, but for now, the millions that are here illegally don’t need to demand anything from America.
    Those citizens, natural born or naturalized do not have the right to demand the rest of us give rights to the illegal immigrants that they have not earned and do not deserve.
    Teachers who take the time to support one culture over another, regardless of their motives, should be removed from their teaching positions.


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