High school student Christian Tumax says his decision to stick up for a bullied peer got him suspended.
According to KBTX-TV, the 18-year-old was suspended from Rudder High School in Bryan, Texas, for two days, after video surveillance caught him in a verbal altercation with several other student earlier this week. Tumax says he was trying to stick up for a student with special needs; however, school officials found that video footage of the incident painted Tumax as the aggressor.
Since Tumax’ suspension, the student's story has gained steam on Reddit, and the hashtag "#Free Tumax" has been spread around Twitter.
"[O]kay BISD, suspending a boy for sticking up for a special needs kid that was being bullied? you have a huge mess to clean up #FreeTumax," one user wrote on the social media site. "[D]efending a special ed student is something that should be praised, not punished #FreeTumax," said another.
Tommy Wallis, the superintendent of the Bryan Independent School District, appears to have responded to the hashtag:
I appreciate the messages today, I do read them. Please remember student discipline issued by a campus is a confidential matter. @BryanISD
— Tommy Wallis (@Wallis_BISD) February 10, 2014
However, Tumax, who is now back in school, told KBTX-TV that he does not regret what happened: "My message is, go out and help somebody."