Track Team Disqualified Over Runner's Gesture to God

by at .  Updated at . Comments

What seemed like an innocent gesture had major consequences for the Columbus, Texas, High School Mighty Cardinals track team.

The Cardinals thought they won a 4x100 relay and a chance to move on to State, having bested the field by seven yards.

But Derrick Hayes' skyward point led to a disqualification.

The runner was gesturing in thanks to God, but the point counted as "excessive celebration," which is against the state scholastic rules.

Columbus High Runners

Many in the town, including the runner's father, called it a violation of religious freedom, but the school insists the gesture is not banned because it is religious, but because it is celebratory.

What do you think of the decision by the school, and the father's response?

Is banning a gesture thanking God a violation of religious freedom?

Tags: ,