A teacher at East Middle School in Farmington Hills, Mich. is being accused of forcibly dragging a black sixth-grade student from his seat for refusing to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance.
The unnamed teacher is reportedly under investigation and was put on leave from his duties after “violently” grabbing young Stone Chaney out of his seat for not standing.
“The teacher consultant comes up behind me and snatches me out of my chair violently,” he told WDIV-4 of the Sept. 7 incident. “I was so confused. I didn’t know what was going on.”
His reasoning for not standing? Chaney says that he pledges allegiance to “God and his family,” not a flag, and that his rights to express himself were violated.
The next day, Chaney said he was verbally reprimanded by another teacher for doing the same thing.
“I don’t feel safe going to that school anymore because I don’t know what they’re going to do next,” the young boy said. As of right now, Chaney has not gone back to the school, and his family is juggling with the idea of moving his to another district.
“It’s his choice to sit, I don’t make him sit. And they should respect that,” Stone’s father Brian said. “If they’re fighting for freedom, they’re fighting for us to have choices. Then it’s our choice.” His father also brought up the incident directly to the district during a board meting.
The Superintendent of the school district released a statement regarding the incident, stating that “The District fully supports the right of each student to participate or not in the daily Pledge.”