Two Ohio high school football players were suspended from the team after they ran onto the field on 9-11 with thin blue line and thin red line flags in support of the anniversary…until the high school reversed the suspension Tuesday afternoon.
The incident took place on the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, where two Little Miami High School football players ran on the field carrying Thin Red Line and Thin Blue Line flags. The thin blue line flag represents support for police officers and the thin red line flag represents support for firefighters.
A day after Ohio’s Little Miami High School told the players they would not be allowed to practice, the school reversed the suspension, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.
Brady Williams, one of the two boys who were suspended, said that he was not trying to make a political statement, and was instead “honoring the people that lost their lives 19 years ago.” Williams’ father is a police officer and said he wanted to honor all the cops who lost their lives on 9-11.
Two Little Miami football players pay the price for civil disobedience. They were told not to carry onto the field thin blue line and thin red line flags at their 9/11 game. They did anyway. The school has now suspended them from the team indefinitely. #ThinBlueLine #ThinRedLine pic.twitter.com/19y9GAvaxr
— David Winter (@DavidWinterTV) September 14, 2020
Jarad Bentley, whose father is a firefighter, carried the thin red line on the field and waved it before the game. “Because my dad is a firefighter, and if it had been him killed on 9/11, I would have wanted someone to do it for him.”
The students had asked the school if they could go forward with the display, to which the school said no.
“I don’t care what my consequences are, so long as my message gets across, I’ll be happy,” said Williams.
In a statement released Tuesday, the school said its investigation showed, “there were no political motivations behind this display of support for first responders on 9/11, but there were stances (sic) of insubordination,” the newspaper reported.
The players’ coaches will handle any further consequences, the school said.
“While we understand these students’ desire to (sic) show their support of our first responders, they did not obtain permission from district officials,” Little Miami Local Schools said in a statement to Fox19 on Monday. “Administrators must act when students break the rules.”
An Ohio school district has lifted suspensions after two football players were suspended for carrying flags supporting police and firefighters on the field on 9/11: https://t.co/tU1xZGjmxS
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) September 15, 2020
The superintendent, Gregory Power, told WKRC-TV he has received hate messages by email and voicemail since announcing the suspension of the two players.
“The only two flags that will come through the Little Miami football tunnel are the flag of the United States of America and the Little Miami spirit flag,” said Bobbie Grice, president of the Little Miami Local Schools board in a statement Tuesday.