California Teens Pictured at Party With Swastika, Giving Nazi Salute

Photograph went viral, led to outcry
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 5, 2019 5:16 PM CST
California Teens Made Party Cups Into Swastika, Gave Nazi Salute
Stock photo   (Getty Images / loongar)

A California school district is investigating a social media photograph in which young people are seen giving Nazi salutes while standing around a table on which red cups form a swastika, the AP reports. The Newport-Mesa Unified School District was made aware Sunday of social media postings "involving some students who created inappropriate anti-Semitic symbols, and possible underage drinking," the district said Monday in a statement. "While these actions did not occur on any school campus or school function, we condemn all acts of anti-Semitism and hate in all their forms," the district said. "We continue to gather information regarding the conduct of these students and work with law enforcement." NPR notes that the Orange County communities involved are "predominantly white and affluent."

School Board President Charlene Metoyer told the Orange County Register that several students were identified as attending Newport Harbor High School. "I'd like to see genuine remorse from the perpetrators here," she told the newspaper. "They need to learn about what those symbols mean and how devastating it is to see it occurring in 2019. We obviously need to do a better job of providing education and awareness." Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley said, "There is no place for hateful symbols of swastikas and Nazi salutes in our community. Glorifying or even joking about these symbols contradicts the values we share as a diverse community." Foley said the incident must be used as an opportunity work with the school district to implement better anti-bias and anti-hate education. (Nearly 100 Jewish graves were recently desecrated.)

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