Monday, August 28, 2006


Colorado: Flagging Support

Reader JOJ sends along this heartwarming story proving that xenophobia is as American as baseball, mom, and apple pie.

After middle school geography teacher Eric Hamlin was briefly suspended for refusing to take down a classroom display of flags that included those of Mexico, China and the United Nations, "a Littleton middle school removed 30 flags from the gym Friday, fearing that they violate a Colorado law against displaying foreign flags in state buildings," according to Berny Morson of the Rocky Mountain News.
"Perhaps I have a much more cautious interpretation of the law than other people," Oaks said. "I have no idea. I just know that we certainly wouldn't want to be in violation of the state law.

"We don't want it to be anything that anybody would say, 'Do you realize you're violating the law on the wall of your gym?' We don't want that," Oaks said.

Phil Klein, a University of Northern Colorado geography professor who advises school districts on geography curriculums and teaching materials, said he has never heard of anyone objecting to the use of foreign flags in classroom instruction.

"I have not heard of anybody interpreting the law that way," said Klein, who works with all metro area school districts.

Apparently, students will be able to express their "diversity" by painting banners representing the countries of the flags that have been removed, but the lesson in fear they've been taught, we suspect, will much more vivid and long lasting than anything else they learn in school this year.


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