A couple of Football players at Kearns High School are being booted off the team after they filmed themselves burning a rainbow flag and then one of them said: “All gays die.” The incident happened during their summer break, not on campus.
“Granite School District officials are determining the proper punishment, which could include community service or school suspension for the student who posted the video and another who reposted it.
“There’s no place for that in our program at all, and it won’t be tolerated,” said Matt Rickards, the team’s head coach. “It’s potentially a hate crime, so it sickens me.”
“We want to make sure every student who walks through our doors feels safe and secure in the environment that they’re in,” said district spokesman Ben Horsley. “Whether it was done intentionally with a threat in mind or for humor’s sake, it’s inappropriate. And we’re going to address it in a very serious fashion.”
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“The video was also forwarded to the Unified Police Department, but detectives there determined no crime was committed since nobody was directly threatened in the video, and thus no charges — including possible hate crime charges — will be filed, Unified Police Sgt. Melody Gray said.
“Burning the flag is not a crime, and because our hate crimes law is an enhancement to a crime there is no crime committed, therefore (there is no hate crime),” she explained.
“Both police and school district officials said they hope to use the flag-burning incident as an educational opportunity for the students involved and others in the community.
“These are kids, and unfortunately kids make poor decisions on occasion,” Horsley said. “So, in addition to the consequences, we also need to work with those families and provide appropriate education to help them understand why such behavior is not appropriate.”
This was off campus, during summer break, and the kids technically did not say anything wrong even if they meant to. They said, “all gays die.” Not all gays should die or anything that could actually be considered a threat. The students have already been kicked off the football team, so they have been punished. This seems a tad extreme as it is. This should be the end of the story, but the school is actually thinking about expelling them. I may not agree with what they said, or meant to say, but this is not an incident that warrants such a harsh reaction. They shouldn’t have their lives ruined over one stupid remark, that hurt no one.