When sitting in a school cafeteria and hearing students around him ridiculing the armed forces, student and Army National Guard member Pvt. Matthew Clark wasn't going to simply sit quietly by and let their words go unanswered.
According to WHSV3, Matthew stood up in the Broadway High School cafeteria in Rockingham County, Virginia, and loudly proclaimed “He just said that, troops that risk their lives every day are a disgrace to the military, and that they shouldn’t be in the military, and he can do our job better than we can. Too scared to risk our lives for our country, to die for our country — didn’t you say that? I just wanted everybody to know that.”
A video captured by Matthew's sister Rahfen shows two students storming out of the cafeteria after the speech and a school resource officer following after them. A few seconds later, the video ends with applause from students in the room.
The result of Matthew's actions in standing up for our servicemen and women?
He got suspended.
A letter from the school to his parents says Matthew created “a major disturbance in the cafeteria, provoking some students to anger and creating a potentially unsafe environment."
Rahfen defended her brother on Facebook, saying “Mathew did not cuss he did not do anything wrong he technically got threatened and cussed at by one of his peers because of it yet Broadway High School’s principal still suspended him. Mathew was suspended on the account of using the cafeteria as his podium to defend the military."
She says Matthew was the only student suspended.
“I do not think it’s right what happened, especially since the other student who threatened and cussed at Mathew in front of the principal did not get into any trouble.”
As for their military veteran father Keith, who unsuccessfully tried to appeal his son's suspension, he said "I can't be any prouder [of Matthew], and that's the reason I'm here supporting him."