A 20-year veteran teacher is accused of assaulting a middle school student who refused to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance, the latest incident in which a protest over the flag has devolved into apparent violence.
The teacher is Karen Smith, who until recently taught physical education at Angevine Middle School, about 20 miles north of Denver. She couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
Officers were called to the school around noon Thursday, the Denver Post reported. Neither the school nor the police released details, and the student’s name has not been released. No charges have been filed.
A school spokesman told the newspaper that the policy is to allow students to sit or stand during the pledge.
Protests involving the American flag have become a flash point in the last two years since then-NFL player Colin Kaepernick knelt during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.
His example was followed by other NFL players, athletes in other sports and countless people with similar stances.
Critics say it is an unacceptable assault on the values and mores of the United States – and its most potent symbol. Others in this camp say the protests are a disrespectful slap in the face to veterans of all races who have fought or died for American freedoms.
(c) 2018, The Washington Post · Cleve R. Wootson Jr.