Fact Check

Should the U.S. Flag Be Banned in Schools?

FOX News poll asks whether the 'American flag should be banned in America.'

Published Apr 2, 2011

Claim:   FOX News poll asks whether the "American flag should be banned in America."


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, March 2011]

Vote no at Fox news

Can't believe this is even thought about

Go to FOX and vote NO on banning the American flag in America VOTE !!!

This is just sickening.

Only 76.15% have voted on the FOX poll to NOT ban the flag in school and something like 18.0% voted YES, to ban it. What is going on in this country??

Fox is running a poll about whether the flag should be banned in schools in order not to inflame Hispanic students. The poll is being sandbagged by SEIU and we should mount a counter action if you agree with me that the flag should be taken down for no one.

Moveon.org, funded by George Soros, Organizing for America , and SEIU, "Service Employee International UNION", have been twittering today to go to Fox Poll and vote to BAN the American Flag and right now it is still working (18%).


VOTE.........and then pass it along!


Origins:   An opinion poll can't have a "true" or "false" value (as it's obviously an expression of opinion rather than fact), but there are a few points to be made about this particular item:

  • The wording of the message (and the poll itself) is misleading without an explanation of the context that prompted it. Nobody was seriously proposing that the "American flag be banned in America"; the poll grew out of a single May 2010 incident in which five students at a California high school wore American flag T-shirts and bandanas to school on Cinco de Mayo:

    The five teens were sitting at a table outside Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, Calif., on Wednesday morning when Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez asked two of them to remove their American flag bandanas. The boys complied, but were asked to accompany Rodriguez to the principal's office.

    The five students — Daniel Galli, Austin Carvalho, Matt Dariano, Dominic Maciel and Clayton Howard — were then told they must turn their T-shirts inside-out or be sent home, though it would not be considered a suspension. Rodriguez told the students he did not want any fights to break out between Mexican-American students celebrating their heritage and those wearing American flags.

    The five boys later said that "turning their shirts inside-out was disrespectful, so their parents decided to take them home."

    District officials immediately repudiated the school's handling of the matter:

    In a statement released [the next day], Morgan Hill Unified School District Superintendent Wesley Smith characterized the incident as "extremely unfortunate" and said the matter is under investigation.

    "The Morgan Hill Unified School District does not prohibit nor do we discourage wearing patriotic clothing," Smith's statement read. "The incident on May 5 at Live Oak High School is extremely unfortunate. While campus safety is our primary concern and administrators made decisions yesterday in an attempt to ensure campus safety, students should not, and will not, be disciplined for wearing patriotic clothing. This matter is under investigation and appropriate action will be taken."

  • The poll is an unofficial, non-scientific opinion poll whose purpose is to drive visitors to the FOX News web site. It has no more significance than that, especially as nobody was actually proposing the action that the poll describes.
  • As of April 2011, the poll had been running for nearly a year and amassed over 4.5 million "votes," with the "No, the flag should not be banned" option leading at 81.75%.

Last updated:   2 April 2011


    Miller, Joshua Rhett.   "California Students Sent Home for Wearing U.S. Flags on Cinco de Mayo."

    FOXNews.com.   6 May 2010.

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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