School district officials at a high school in Folsom, California, have advised students against chanting "USA!" in school and during school-related events.
This is why
District officials said that students' chants of "USA!" could be construed as "offensive" or "intolerant," and have requested the students refrain from doing so, warning them that the chant could send an "unintended message."
The school's principal on Wednesday sent an email to parents advising them about the "unintended message" that could be sent by the chant, and noted that chanting "USA!" might better serve for "appropriate" times, such as after the national anthem or Pledge of Allegiance.
What some are saying about the controversy
About the controversy, high school senior Ryan Bernal said, "I wasn’t angry, but I was definitely like 'Why can’t we chant USA?' To say USA, you know, we’re all the same. We’re all American. It doesn’t matter what your skin tone is or where you’re from."
California Interscholastic Federation commissioner Mike Garrison — who oversees high school athletics within the district — added, "There’s a time and a place to yell that and cheer [USA]."
A concerned mother commented to the local NBC affiliate that she believes the chant is inspirational, and not divisive.
Natalie Woodbury said, "I want to chant USA because I want us to pull together and help, not because I want anybody to feel left out or not a part of our country."