One carried Old Glory, while the other player carried an American flag with a blue stripe — the banner associated with the “Blues Lives Matter” movement that supports police. In a video, fans can be heard cheering the Irvington players, who ultimately lost 21-14.
A month later, Irvington Union Free School District superintendent Kristopher Harrison ripped the patriotic play in a letter to the school district.
While the Irvington coaches said they had no intention of “inject[ing] a politicized sentiment into our community,” Harrison wrote in an Oct. 12 letter to district families, the actions “caused concern and harm to some members of our community.”
“Controversial, politicized messages are not representative of the inclusive, welcoming community that we seek to be,” the letter said.
An email later sent by Harrison individually to people who responded to his letter clarified that “for community members of color, seeing the blue line flag on school grounds conjured up frightening emotions of events such as those that occurred in Charlottesville [Va.].”
The lecture was not welcomed by all in a community that lost at least two residents in the Sept. 11, 2011 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. The Hudson Valley as a whole lost 200 residents that day.
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