After his secretly recorded videos of his teacher's derogatory comments about members of the USA military went viral, a Pico Rivera student who hopes to join the Marines is staying out of school over concerns about his own safety.
When El Rancho High School teacher Gregory Salcido saw the student wearing a Marines shirt, he launched into a rant.
The worst of it is, really, when he puts down the USA military by resorting to racism: "We couldn't beat the Vietnamese - they're a bunch of people this freaking big throwing rice at us".
He said that criticizing war as a general public policy is legitimate, but that Salcido should not have intentionally "besmirched the intellect of people who serve our country".
According to CBS 2 Los Angeles, Salcido was removed from all committees on the Pico Rivera City Council over his remarks.
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Although the unidentified student didn't intend for the video to go viral, his mother shared it with some of her friends and "now it's this".
The student, who wished to remain anonymous to avoid retribution, said that his brother and uncles were Marines who fought in Afghanistan, Desert Storm and Vietnam, and that Salcido's comments were 'so disrespectful'.
The 17-year-old high school senior who shot the videos, told The OC Register that he never intended for the videos to go viral. A woman who said she was a friend of the parents posted the video to Facebook Friday afternoon.
Salcido then says troops overseas are "the freakin' lowest of our low".
Erwin Chemerinsky, the dean of the U.C. Berkeley School of Law, said school districts can "insist that teachers are professionally competent and appropriate".
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It appears that the teacher began his rant, which goes on for almost ten minutes, after he spotted a student in his class wearing a marines sweatshirt.
He also says "we don't have a good military" because it can't defeat "guys wearin' frickin' robes", and couldn't defeat the Vietnamese.
The voice also tells the student not to join the military and to never wear the sweatshirt again. "I don't think it's wise for me to make any specific comments, but I want my friends, family, and students to know we are fine and we respect the rights of free expression for all individuals".
El Rancho High School is offering mental health counseling to students. "I and my fellow councilmembers strongly disagree with Mr. Salcido's comments", said Pico Rivera Mayor Gustavo Camacho. Villon added the investigation is still in its early stages and board members are waiting to hear Salcido's side of the story.
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