Maddie Mueller and other members of the California conservative group Valley Patriots are proud of President Trump’s work to “Make America Great Again” and they aren’t afraid to show it.
But the senior contends Clovis North High School in Fresno banned the Patriots from wearing their MAGA hats on campus Wednesday over an alleged dress code violation, though she contends students wear hats with gay pride and other logos without issues, KGPE reports.
“To my knowledge, Trump is not a logo it’s a last name. It’s just our president, you really can’t claim our president is a logo or a sports team. It’s not affiliating with any gang,” Mueller said.
“How does being a patriot in trying to show pride in your country, how is that inappropriate?”
School officials didn’t bother to answer the questions or discuss allegations conservative students are singled out for enforcement, but rather justified the decision to help students “feel safe at school.”
“Bottom line for us is our dress code is really about allowing our kids to come to school, to feel safe at school, to feel supported at school and to be free of distractions so they can focus on learning,” Clovis Unified School District spokeswoman Kelly Avants told television station.
Regardless, Mueller remains steadfast in her beliefs and well researched in her rights, which has led to repeated clashes with school officials. On previous occasions, staff harassed her for wearing shirts that read “Build the Wall” and “deplorable,” though Mueller has yet to face serious consequences.
“I’ve been repeatedly pulled aside by teachers and sent to the disciplinary office, but nothing made it into my official record because there is no rule about Trump clothing,” she told Yahoo! Lifestyle.
Mueller has detailed her experiences as an outspoken Trump supporter at Clovis North on Facebook, and through local and national media in recent years.
“I have been struggling with my anxiety lately,” she wrote in a Facebook post. “I feel it like a dark shadow over me every day at school. I always worry about being in trouble for politics, my first amendment rights, or things that there are no written rules for. Sometimes I find myself worrying when people from the disciplinary office walk by the room, because I wonder if they’re coming for me. I shouldn’t have to feel this way.”
In another post, Mueller describes the heavy scrutiny she draws for speaking her conservative values, Heavy reports.
“I have been in trouble this year too many times to count. I was in trouble in November for wearing Nunes, Valadao, and Trump shirts as well as passing out stickers and magnets from the Nunes campaign. There was no rule to support this. I was not 18 years old yet, so I wasn’t in violation of the rule that prohibited adults from giving political propaganda out,” Mueller wrote.
“I was in trouble for speaking on KMJ radio during school hours about my experience as a senior experiencing school threats for the first time, and my opinion on how things were handled. Not a minute after I was off the air, my principal pulled me into a meeting with him and the deputy principal. My mother was called. She stood up for me,” she continued. “That same day I had a teacher get in my face in front of my peers and tell me how wrong my radio appearance was as well as comments I made online on the Fresno Bee stating my view as a student. I was told I was not in trouble, but I have been under a microscope since.”
Mueller announced a Feb. 20 “MAGA hat day” for Clovis High in a Feb. 18 Facebook post, and she billed the event as an opportunity for conservative students to show “support, love and pride” for President Trump. School officials immediately shut it down and informed Mueller students cannot wear MAGA hats at Clovis North, pointing to the school dress code.
Avants assured Fox News political gear and MAGA clothing is totally fine in Clovis schools, with some exceptions.
“It’s unfortunate that our dress code is being misrepresented as specifically singling out a MAGA hat as that is not what the policy says,” she said.
“The district dress code allows for students to wear shirts or other clothing with a wide variety of sayings and/or political commentary. Unless causing an actual disruption on campus, MAGA apparel is acceptable, and this has been shared with the student.”
Also, MAGA hats are banned.
“The issue raised here is specific to a hat,” Avants told Yahoo Lifestyle. “Both the district’s dress code policy and the school’s handbook lays out allowable headgear to be hats or caps with the school logo and or in solid school colors. There has never been a subjective evaluation of what language or logo is or is not on a hat, because the policy is straightforward in allowing only school hats or hats in solid school colors.”
Mueller said she offered to get her MAGA hat in black and blue, the school’s colors, but no dice.
“They told me my political clothing had to be approved,” she said.
The student told Yahoo! Lifestyle the school’s rules are bogus because other students wear bright hats or ones with gay pride or baseball logos.
“Last year, a kid wore a red MAGA hat to school every day and no one said anything,” she said. “The school is failing to enforce its dress code.”
The teen said her mother’s concerned the political activism could draw petty retribution from school officials, but Mueller said she’s not sweating it. She’s got more important things to deal with.
“My mother is worried that if this continues, they won’t let me graduate,” Mueller said. “If that happens, I’ll get homeschooled, but I won’t be silenced.”
“The school is demoralizing and degrading patriotism,” she said. “I’m fighting for the generations of kids who will walk in to my school in the future.”