STANLY COUNTY, N.C. - Despite the North Stanly High School football game being canceled, dozens showed up to support the cheerleaders who have been put on probation after being photographed with a Trump banner.
“We are here for those cheerleaders who have been wrongly accused of being racist, nazis and any other name you can think of,” co-organizer Jeremy Onitreb said at the Friday afternoon rally.
Days after the team was put on probation, dozens filled the lot across the street from the school to show support for the girls.
“We have free speech in this nation and it's ok to waive a trump sign. You can do that. You can support your president so I was very disgusted it by it and I really wanted to be out here today to show support for the kids,” Alina Blue said.
The North Carolina High School Athletic Association says the team violated a policy which states you can't promote political campaigns while representing the school.
The rally was supposed to be held ahead of the night's football game, but the game was canceled due to safety concerns.
"We received information from the school super that they have received information. He did not elaborate about what that information was but they took that information before the school board and the school board were the ones that decided to cancel the games for this evening," Stanly County Sheriff Jeff Crisco said.
Many supporters of the cheerleading squad, however, believe the threat was unfounded.
"It wasn't just the school board. I believe it was other organizations were involved in phoning in threats or doing whatever they can to try to silence us and we aren't going to allow them to do it," Onitreb said.
"There was no threat. We are no threat. We are having a peaceful rally to show our support for the cheerleaders and tell them they did nothing wrong," a rally attendee told FOX 46.
Onitreb added that the team meant no harm and the backlash the team has received needs to stop.
"They are teenagers they had to idea what they were doing. We all been teenagers. We all did things we didn't know this would have an impact," he said.