Students at West Plains High Schol in Missouri have displayed a Confederate flag in the school’s lunchroom recently as a response to LGBTQ students handing out rainbow flags earlier in the same day.
Two LGBTQ students have since told BuzzFeed News that they ordered 60 rainbow flags in order to show fellow queer students that they’re not alone, and they noted that they weren’t trying to upset or offend anyone with the flags. Most students just attached the flags to their backpacks, but not everyone.
Two or three unidentified male students displayed a Confederate flag in the senior cafe area of the lunchroom later that day, and one of them posted an image on social media which shows the flag being displayed, together with the message: “If they can fly their queer flags, others can fly their rebel flags. “.
According to the two of the LGBTQ students who had handed out flags earlier in the day, the worst part of this all was that others were backing up the students with a Confederate flag, and they used anti-gay slurs against them and their friends in the cafeteria – as reported by BuzzFeed News.
The Confederate flag was removed only after teachers intervened, but it remains uncelar if they took any rainbow flags gown. The school has since said in a statement that it respects the students’ first amendment rights, but it found it unacceptable that the Confederate and rainbow flags were allegedly “used by some members of the groups to taunt other students”.
The school added that it has decided to deal with the incident as a learning experience, rather than with a disciplinary matter. So, no disciplinary actions were taken, and the school hopes to teach their students to respect each other and to respect different viewpoints on a variety of societal issues.