HomeVietnamese AmericanTexas mom says racist scribbled swastika on back of her son's t-shirt

Texas mom says racist scribbled swastika on back of her son’s t-shirt

By Randall Yip, AsAmNews Executive Editor

A horrified Vietnamese American mother in a suburb of Houston, Texas says a bully drew a swastika on the back of her 11-year-old son’s t-shirt.

The t-shirt was meant to celebrate the graduation to middle school of her son from Sue McGown Elementary School in Cypress. Instead, it has become a reminder of the racism both her 8 and 11-year-old sons have faced.

Her oldest had gone around his class during the last week of school asking classmates to sign his t-shirt. Unbeknownst to her son, Hai Au Huynh said one boy instead of signing his name drew a swastika on the back.

Her son walked around with the racist symbol for an unknown amount of time before discovering it.

 “You know, I’m terrified. My child, my son, my 11-year-old is terrified,” said Huynh to AsAmNews.

Stunned to see the nazi flag on his shirt, her son quickly removed it.

“He didn’t want anyone to think that it was him. He took off his shirt and scribbled over it.”

She says her son also saw a swastika on other students’ shirts. She says the perpetrator has a history of using the N-word and other racial slurs.

u Huynh holds up her son's t-shirt showing where he scribbled over a swastika drawn on his back by another student
AsAmNews photo. A mom says her son scribbled over a swastika written on back of his t-shirt by another student

School is now out for the summer, but Huynh is demanding that the district remove the bully from her son’s classes next year at his new middle school. She says Cyrpress-Fairbanks has been dismissive of her request, instead suggesting she take it up with her son’s new school.

That school happens to be in transition and Huynh says the school’s administration has yet to be named.

She says the district refuses to say what if any punishment the offender is facing, other than to say that there has been an investigation and that it is following the student code of conduct.

The civil rights group Woori Juntos, part of the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium, is advocating for Huynh. Offices are closed this week and no one was available to comment.

AsAmNews reached out to Cypress-Fairbanks School District spokesperson Leslie Francis Thursday morning, but she has not responded. A second inquiry to Francis and School Superintendent Mark Henry Friday morning has also not been returned.

This is not the first racist incident Huynh says her children have encountered.

Earlier this year on a school bus, an older student taunted her eight-year-old son by chanting “ching chong wing wong” over and over again during the entire ride. The tormentor did not stop even after Huynh’s youngest child told him the chant was racist and offensive.

RELATED: Parent accuses Texas school of ignoring racist taunting of child

The district made notes of its investigation available to Huynh which she shared with us. The district concluded the boy who initiated the chant did not have any racist intent.

“The investigation did not substantiate that this incident was racially motivated,” the district’s notes read.
“The 4th grader did not realize the words “ching chong” were considered racist.
The student can be heard questioning this on the bus video, and during the
investigation, he stated that he was unaware.”

The district also concluded the boy began his chant prior to Huynh’s son getting onto the bus.

Huynh asked the district to send out a note about what happened on the bus to the entire district and condemn the actions as unacceptable. It declined.

“The campus determined their priority was to educate the students, not the
community at large. Their expectation is to address any and all hurtful
language/behaviors of McGown Elementary students and to follow the CFISD
Student Code of Conduct,” the notes read.

Huynh talked to AsAmNews about the school bus incident in February as well as an incident her children faced during a soccer game. She elected not to use her real name in that story out of fear for her safety and that of her family.

She allowed AsAmNews to use her real name for this story.

“Initially, I did not want to go as public as I should, because I was fearful for my family and my children. But given the how this has all escalated, we would like to I would like to go public,” Huynh told AsAmNews.

We also spoke with Tara Cummings, a White ally with Cy-Fair Strong Schools and a Cypress parent.

“The majority of our campus leadership is White,” she said. “This isn’t the first incident in my opinion the district has not handled well. I hate this for the family going through this. I’m grateful and proud of her for standing up for her kids.”

This story is a project of “The Stop The Hate campaign and is made possible with funding from the California State Library (CSL) in partnership with the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs (CAPIAA). The views expressed on this website and other materials produced by Asian American Media, Inc. do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the CSL, CAPIAA or the California government. Learn more at capiaa.ca.gov/stop-the-hate.

AsAmNews is published by the non-profit, Asian American Media Inc. Follow us on FacebookX, InstagramTikTok and YouTube. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our efforts to produce diverse content about the AAPI communities. We are supported in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs as part of the Stop the Hate program. To report a hate incident or hate crime and get support, go to CA vs Hate.


  1. It’s absolutely disgusting that the school district didn’t even have the guts to condone the actions of this student. It’s 2023; our kids deserve to be safe at school.


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