Orange County police and school administration officials have looked into reports of anti-Semitism after social media posts went viral.
The images depicted students at a party stacking their plastic cups in the shape of a swastika and giving a Nazi salute.
The party took place off campus, but several students at the party attend Newport Harbor High School. Because of this, the community has asked the school to do something about the behavior.
The district told NPR,
“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.”
People are trying to find out as much as they can about this incident.
some assholes at Newport Harbor High School did this fucked up nazi salute and here comes my little 16 yr old sis blasting them all over social and I couldn't be more proud pic.twitter.com/5rbYo0tdC8— lyss (@anothergaytwitt) March 4, 2019
Got a story for you @CNN @FoxNews @MSNBC. Newport Beach High school kids at a party arranged cups in a swastika and did the Nazi salute "as a joke." Please reach out for more info. pic.twitter.com/dFFgDW4Vhp— HomieWithAChromie (@NotAChromie) March 4, 2019
The Newport Mesa Unified School District is set to hold a community meeting tonight at 6pm.— Rob Hayes (@abc7robhayes) March 5, 2019
It wants to discuss the photos showing high school students at a party posing in a Nazi salute before a swastika made of plastic cups. #NewportBeach pic.twitter.com/Bn56top53h
Photo of Newport HS students performing Nazi salute around swastika provokes outrage: report - https://t.co/gRg3rfCKK3 Southern California high school is under investigation after an image surfaced online of students appearing to perform a Nazi salute while gathered around red... pic.twitter.com/pWQD7cN7BB— TheDailyUSNews.com (@TheDailyUsNews) March 4, 2019
The images show the party toasting over the swastika symbol on the table, with some of the Snapchats saying “German engeneraing [sic]” and “German rage cage.”
The teens also held their hands straight out in a Nazi salute for another photo.
Charlene Metoyer, the school district’s president, told CBS Los Angeles,
“More should’ve been done to make sure the students recognize the severity of the symbols they were using. It is not something funny. It’s a very, very serious situation.”
This is most certainly not a joke.
How absolutely disgusting! These are students from Newport Harbour High school making a nazi swastika & raising their hands to solute Hitler. This isn’t funny and definitely not a joke. pic.twitter.com/anqwWtEgBk— #blm (@woc_power) March 3, 2019
2019. White teens are making swastikas for fun and giving Nazi salutes with pride.— Shaun King (@shaunking) March 4, 2019
These teens are from Newport Harbor High School and Costa Mesa High School in Orange County, California.
Hard to wrap my mind around this kind of bigotry. pic.twitter.com/CYONYfiVOX
They should make them do community service hours for the local synagogues. Over the summer, they should be required to go to D.C and visit the U.S Holocaust Memorial museum.— Dblmint02 (@Dblmint02) March 4, 2019
How are the high school kids in Newport Beach in 2019 the exact same ones I went to school with there in 1996? Oh wait.— Rebecca Sills (@RebeccaSills) March 4, 2019
(God grant me the strength not to namecheck every now-37 y/o whose anti-semitism, racism and utter mediocrity I will never forget). https://t.co/Zegdf54vF9
CBS Los Angeles has reported that the students have been identified and suspended. They attended three different schools in the Newport Beach and Costa Mesa area.
The schools called together a meeting to discuss the issue with concerned parents. Over 500 people gathered at Newport Harbor high to express their anger.
Jewish students explained that they see swastikas carved into bathroom doors and have to ignore Jewish jokes. Other students explained that these kids knew exactly what they were doing.
Josdel Hernandez, a student at Newport Harbor, said they had just wrapped a lesson on the Holocaust,
“They showed us graphic videos of the concentration camps. It’s not like our teachers need to show us anymore about the Holocaust. They knew what it means.”
People online have been giving their two cents about the issue the last few days.
They are going back to their history— THE GREAT RECESSION 2019 (@zxasuk) March 4, 2019
This is America so not surprised at all. Nothing will happen to these little shitbags as this has sadly become the norm in the "Land of the free".— YorkshireBornAndBred (@MichiganYorkie) March 4, 2019
I can only assume that every Conservative who condemned Malia Obama for drinking wine underage is just as angry over the Newport Harbor High School students who took photos of themselves drinking while doing the Nazi salute around cups in a swastika formation, yes?— Dead Sea Squirrel ☘️ (@the_ns) March 4, 2019
Also, god damn it white people.— Mr. Black (@Space_Cat_Prime) March 4, 2019
Incidents like this are a red flag for groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and the Anti-Defamation League. The ADL has reported anti-Semitic incidents on the rise, with incidents at K-12 schools surpassing incidents in public areas for the first time in 2017.
Keegan Hankes, a senior researcher at the SPLC, told NPR,
“It wasn’t that long ago that we were having conversations about whether the [neo-Nazi] movement was going to age out. You would go to conferences and it would be an audience full of white men in their late 30s and up.
“Now, you go to the same conferences and they’re sold out and the average age has dropped by 20 years.”
Another meeting for the Orange County schools is scheduled on Thursday, March 7th at Corona del Mar High School this time. The district is trying its best to include the community in the education process and allow voices to be heard who’ve been affected by these actions.
While the students have been suspended, the school and police are still considering other options to discipline them.