no third solution

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Respect the Anthem, or Else…

December 12th, 2006

Recently, a 14-year old Hamtramck student was forcibly removed from a basketball game for failing to remove his hood during the national anthem. And it sounds like he was roughed up a little bit by the police. Fortunately, it’s been caught on camera.

The video “shows one of Hamtramck’s reserve police officers following the student out of the stands, then grabbing him by the back of his neck, leading him outside the school, then pushing him against the building.” The officer becomes strangely silent when he notices he’s on film – and conjures a half-baked story about how the 14-year old “shoved him.” The video unfortunately is not on Youtube, and it doesn’t appear to be available for download. For the time being though, it’s on the main page of DetroitWild.tv

The officer is actually a “reserve officer” which in most departments is an unpaid, volunteer position. Real cops hate reserve officers; they can’t carry firearms, they get in the way, and they’re a liability. They want to dress up and “play” cop from time to time, and essentially, they are glorified mall-cops with mag-lites.
I’ve heard on the local radio, school policy dictates that hats must be removed during the playing of the national anthem, although the article notes that a School Board member said that the district “[doesn’t] have a written policy on the matter.” The deification of a song notwithstanding, this kid isn’t wearing a hat. He’s wearing a hooded sweatshirt. At most he’s guilty of violating some social norms, and depending on where you sit politically, bad manners.

This is hardly grounds for removal from the game, especially when there is no policy to the contrary, and throwing the kid up against the wall, harassing him once outside is entirely unjustifiable; it defies both law and reason.

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no third solution

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