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High school football game in OC ends in accusations of racism

Football field
Football field
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The players at Friday night’s football game between Santa Ana and Aliso Niguel weren’t the only ones butting heads – accusations of racist signage among the crowd sparked conflict off the field and into the weekend.

Santa Ana high’s principal, Jeff Bishop was made aware of alleged signs on the Aliso Niguel side that expressed support for Trump and the building of a border wall. Bishop expressed on Facebook over the weekend that he believed the signs to be racist against his school, which is almost 99% Latino, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Bishop’s post sparked an online debate between parents in both districts. Deni Christensen, principal of Aliso Niguel High School, countered in a later statement to the Orange County Register that she and other administrators removed three signs, none of which mentioned a border wall, but stated that “ it’s not outside the realm of possibility that there were students in the parking lot with signs we did not see.”

We discuss the events at the game, and analyze the legal arguments regarding political signage at public high school events.

AirTalk reached out to both principles and school districts. Santa Ana declined to comment on air at this time, and Aliso Niguel did not return a statement in time for the show.


Steve Fryer, reporter for the OC register who covers high school sports; he was at the game on Friday and has been following the story; he tweets @stevefryer

Jody Armour, professor of law at USC; he tweets @NiggaTheory

Aaron Caplan, professor of law at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, his focus includes constitutional law and First Amendment law