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Oklahoma City Kindergartner Banned From Wearing University of Michigan T-Shirt

Leon Halip, Getty Images

It seems like these college football rivalries are starting earlier and earlier. Even kindergartners are being taught which teams to root for and which ones will get you in trouble.

An Oklahoma City kindergartener got into trouble after wearing a University of Michigan T-shirt to class. The principal forced the boy to turn his shirt inside-out, saying the shirt violated the city-wide ban on apparel that did not support the state’s colleges.

Cooper Barton, 5, comes from a family of Michigan fans. He went to school wearing a maize and blue shirt with “The Big House,” the nickname for Michigan’s 114,000-seat stadium, written on the front. The school principal made Cooper turn the shirt inside out due to the state policy.The rule is among many restricting clothing and dress in the city schools. It came into effect in 2005 after suggestions from a gang task force. On the list of banned items, non-Oklahoma college dress falls directly in between gang symbol haircuts and “satanic cult dress, witchcraft and related symbols.”

So I guess this mean throwing up a “Gig ’em Aggies” or “Hook ’em Horns” would be considered gang signs in Oklahoma?

I can understand the need to eliminate gang symbols and the like from schools, that’s fine. But seriously, a college T-shirt on a kindergartner is not going to cause any harm. And in any case, aren’t there other things the school district should be worried about other than which college team their students are rooting for?

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