Twelve-year-old Gavin Cortina of St. Louis, Missouri, was attacked by schoolmates on a school bus because he was wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat. Young Cortina was suspended because of the affray. A cellphone video recorded the incident in which Cortina was verbally and physically assaulted by fellow students because he expressed his political beliefs by wearing an iconic red ball cap emblazoned with Trump’s motto: “Make America Great Again.”
 
A male student is seen to shout at Cortina, “You want to build a wall? You want to build a f—king wall?”
 
Cortina told local KMOV news that the confrontation soon became more heated. “At one point, he just got so frustrated he pushed me,” said Cortina. “And then he kept hitting me and backing me up by the window of the bus, and so I just had to push him out.”
 
The Parkway School District suspended Cortina, even though he was the one who was assaulted. Cortina’s mother, Christina, is concerned about what will happen if her son wears the hat again. “As a parent it’s so unsettling,” she said. “I feel like my son was made an example of, it was a tricky situation—it was politically charged.”
 
The Parkway School District sent out notices to parents in the wake of the November election that offered suggestions about how to discuss Donald Trump’s electoral victory.

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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