"If giving the bird was a crime, you wouldn't be able to build enough prisons to house everyone; there would be repeat offenders on death row," Terry Shore said, incredulously.
He is concerned that the incident will hurt his son, who hopes to join the Navy in the fall. He said the episode was a "mole hill made into a mountain," and has been mischaracterized by the local media. TheArabtribune.com reported that the younger Shore "took a swing" at the principal. But Crowder and school superintendent John Mullins, who was standing right next to him, denied that report.
Regardless of the details of the incident, for the Shore family, who can now add the mug shot of their son in a graduation gown to the family album, the damage has already been done.
"This was supposed to be the happiest day of Bryan's life," Terry Shore said of the graduation "It might never be over. We don't know how the community will react."