A 12-year-old boy in the St. Louis area found himself allegedly bullied for wearing a red “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) hat on a school bus, and is now suspended as a result of the encounter.
The Parkway School District suspended the middle schooler, Gavin Cortina, and two other students allegedly involved in the political confrontation that went from verbal to physical after cell phone video of the fight surfaced.
As suggested in the footage embedded below, the other two students apparently were not fans of building a wall at the U.S.-Mexico border. Gavin claims he was pushed and then punched multiple times by a “frustrated” student before fighting back.
“In cell phone video of the incident sent to News 4, the students are heard arguing over President Trump’s proposed Mexican border wall. The situation quickly escalates to pushing and what looks likes some punches thrown,” KMOV News4 of St. Louis reported
Make America Great Again was Donald Trump’s campaign slogan and is the ongoing catchphrase for his administration. One of Trump’s campaign promises was construction of a border wall for national security purposes.
“Other incidents of students being bullied for wearing Mr. Trump’s signature ‘Make America Great Again’ hat were reported during the heated presidential race,” the Washington Times claimed.
Gavin Cortina’s mom, Christina, spoke about the school response to the incident.
“As a parent, it’s so upsetting because my son doesn’t need to be made the example for this…I saw him being persecuted for having an opinion of his own…I saw him being berated and bullied and beat — literally beat — because he feels strongly about the world today,” KMOV News4 added.
The Parkway School District issued a lengthy statement about the suspension of the students allegedly involved.
“On Wednesday, February 1, three students got into an argument on an after-school activity bus at Parkway West Middle School over a hat worn by one of the students. Two of the students got into a physical altercation with both students striking each other in the face. The third student videotaped a portion of the incident, verbally escalated the confrontation and posted it online. The entire incident was captured on internal video cameras on the school bus, which was used by the school to conduct a full investigation and gather all the facts. As a result, all three students have received suspensions in accordance with Parkway’s student discipline policy.”
After the suspensions run their course, the three students will be required to attend something akin to sensitivity training “to resolve their differences in a peaceful and respectful manner,” the statement concluded.
Apparently Gavin’s mom may be reconsidering allowing him to wear the MAGA hat to school in the future for safety reasons, the Daily Mail suggested.
The Cortina family live in Chesterfield, Missouri, which voted “bigly” for Trump over Hillary Clinton by 25 points in the 2016 presidential election, according to Truth Revolt.
It may be an understatement to say that emotions are still running high three months after Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 presidential election, an outcome that most media organizations and political pollsters and pundits insisted never could or would happen.
Some political observers maintain that, in general, the media echo chamber or groupthink that Trump rival Clinton was a lock for the presidency might be partially responsible for at least some of the post-election incivility by those dissatisfied with the outcome on November 8, 2016. Negative media coverage since the election may also be playing a role, some of those observers also contend.
The most high-visibility incident of politically motivated violence directed at Trump supporters is the riot that broke out at the University of California at Berkeley last week when controversial Breitbart journalist Milo Yiannopoulos attempted to deliver a scheduled speech there.
Based on the available facts, do you think that the suspension of sixth grader Gavin Cortina in connection with MAGA hat bullying incident is fair?
[Featured Image by Jae C. Hong/AP Images]