A young member of Lewisville Independent School District’s Special Olympics flag football team was recently the victim of racist exploitation, and his mother wants something to be done about it. 

According to CBS DFW, Austen Mornes claims his coach gave him a Confederate flag hat to wear last Thursday night. As Newsweek reports, the coach in question, as well as two other coaches for the team, are white. 

“He told me like put it on, keep it on, show it to your mom and stuff. I said, ‘What does the flag stand for?’ I said, ‘I don’t have no clue,’ and he says, ‘Freedom,'” recalled Mornes. 

The 21-year-old has autism, and Amelia Mornes-Njoka, his mother, is demanding an apology from the school district and the team's coach as her son is now too uncomfortable to return for practice.

Mornes has been with the team for eight years. 

“You trust these people with your kid who has a disability. You know, and as far as I knew, I knew them well enough for my son to be around them without my supervision,” noted Mornes-Njoka, who had to explain the racially charged meaning behind the hat to her son. 

"We have spoken with the adults involved in this situation, and they relayed this information," Lewisville ISD released in a statement. "The adult volunteer, who is not an LISD employee, was wearing a cap the former student expressed interest in. The student took the cap home. The volunteer coach contacted the parents to discuss what happened and believed the situation had been resolved to everyone’s satisfaction. The adult volunteers with the Special Olympics are happy to speak directly with the family if concerns remain."

Mornes-Njoka doesn't believe the generic statement is enough, noting, “My worst feeling was they were sitting there watching him and probably snickering or laughing under their breath.”

Lewisville ISD has not confirmed whether the coach is still employed.


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