The Thin Blue Line Flag, which is seen as a symbol of white supremacist and extremist groups to some and a show of support for police to others, was flown proudly at a Saugus High School football game.
As the game between Santa Clarita’s Saugus High School and Millikan High School game began Friday, two Saugus players jogged across the field—one holding the American flag and the other flying the Thin Blue Line flag. Despite bans on the controversial flag by William S. Hart High School District superintendent Mike Kuhlman and the team’s coach, the banner has continued to fly.
The Thin Blue Line flag that caused tension and was essentially banned from being displayed by Saugus High School football players before games has returned, despite the district superintendent and coach calling for the flag to stop flying.https://t.co/GzA6S9EZ9r
— KNX News 97.1 FM (@knxnews) October 31, 2022
“Just three short days ago, I became aware of a concern about this symbol being flown at Saugus High School football games,” Kuhlman wrote in a letter to the community dated September 28. “Despite emails for immediate action, and threats of consequences if certain steps were not taken within a specific timeline, we determined to take our time to understand the issue accurately and to respond thoughtfully.”
REPORT: The story of Saugus’ ‘Thin Blue Line’ flag has resurfaced. I’ll say this: The flag being brought back out this past week was an isolated incident. One player deciding to act alone, according to multiple sources. It’s playoff time. Let’s focus on that.
— Tarek Fattal (@Tarek_Fattal) October 31, 2022
The debate has only heated up since, as members of the school board and community rally against the decision to ban the flag. Many in the district harbor strong opinions when it comes to supporting the police, who were among the first responder when Saugus High was the site of a deadly mass shooting. The students, including some members of the football team, were in the school when the shooting happened. This shooting claimed the lives of three students and wounded two more. The gunman then turned the gun on himself before law enforcement arrived on the scene.
Hart school board president Joe Messina said during a recent board meeting that it was insulting for the district to decide not to let the team use the flag.
“I believe, personally, this is a slap in the face of those who came running towards danger at Saugus High School,” Messina said.
City News Service Contributed to this article.