Students ask why BLM signs led to controversy - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Students ask why BLM signs led to controversy

Two students at Tift County High School wore "Black Lives Matter" signs during homecoming week and were told to remove them. Now, some people are asking why. (Source: Facebook)) Two students at Tift County High School wore "Black Lives Matter" signs during homecoming week and were told to remove them. Now, some people are asking why. (Source: Facebook))
Audreyanna Lawson and Ityana Dennis said they never could have imagined the post would get the attention it's getting now. (Source: WALB) Audreyanna Lawson and Ityana Dennis said they never could have imagined the post would get the attention it's getting now. (Source: WALB)
Director of Communication for Tift County School, Stacey Beckham. (Source: WALB) Director of Communication for Tift County School, Stacey Beckham. (Source: WALB)
"Sadly, that's their generation today. I felt like, they have a voice also. Kids have a voice just like grownups have a voice. They were expressing that as they felt like they should," said Lakeisha Barron, mother of Lawson and Davis. (Source: WALB) "Sadly, that's their generation today. I felt like, they have a voice also. Kids have a voice just like grownups have a voice. They were expressing that as they felt like they should," said Lakeisha Barron, mother of Lawson and Davis. (Source: WALB)
TIFT CO., GA (WALB) -

Two students at Tift County High School wore "Black Lives Matter" signs during homecoming week and were told to remove them. 

Now, some people are asking why. 

The Tift County School System's Student Dress Standard says "Any attire deemed by the administration to be a threat to the safety and security of the campus or a distraction to the learning environment will not be permitted."

Every parent signs the policy, but the students don't understand how their signs were any more distracting than other students' outfits. 

"We didn't expect the picture to go viral like that. We didn't expect that," said Audreyanna Lawson.

Lawson and Ityana Dennis said they never could have imagined the post would get the attention it's getting now. 

MORE: South GA students told to remove BLM signs during 'Generation Day'

"They liked it. People took pictures of us," said Dennis.

"They took pictures of us and our signs and they actually liked it," said Lawson.

Wednesday, as a part of Tift County High School's homecoming week, students dressed up for "Generation Day."

"Generations Day is all set up to be in great fun. We may have kids coming in in '60s attire with tie dye on, or '70s they may be in bell bottoms and fringe, or '80s, which we've seen a lot of flourescents," said Director of Communication for Tift County School, Stacey Beckham. 

But these girls took a different route.

"Sadly, that's their generation today. I felt like, they have a voice also. Kids have a voice just like grownups have a voice. They were expressing that as they felt like they should," said Lakeisha Barron, mother of Lawson and Davis.

The girls decided to wear signs with Kendrick Johnson's and Tamir Rice's names on them.

Both whose deaths have sparked controversy. But after 30 minutes of wearing the signs at school, the girls noticed the attention they were getting and asked an administrator if what they were doing was wrong. 

"They told us that we shouldn't wear it to school because it could start problems.  But we didn't see how it could start problems," said Lawson.

They were told to remove their signs.

"Not to even let them wear it 30 minutes, I don't understand," said Barron.

Barron said the girls were raising awareness, not intending to cause violence. But the school board believed it was potentially a harm to the students' safety. 

"We would hope it would definitely not create any type of incident that would create an incident that would be violent at all, but we are charged with the safety and security of every student that comes in that building each day," said Beckham. 

The girls took their signs off.  There was no punitive action taken.  And even though they said the pose may have stirred up controversy, they hope in many ways that it made a difference. 

"I'm very proud of them, both of them," said Barron.

Right now the post has over 2.6K reactions.

One comment stuck out. Kendrick Johnson's mother commented and shared the post. 

Copyright 2016 WALB. All rights reserved.

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