A teacher in California is making headline news after he posed as Trayvon Martin in a photo for the school’s yearbook.
According to The New York Daily News, Spencer Smith dressed as the slain Florida teen wearing a white hoodie (with the hood up) and holding a bag of Skittles. Apparently the teacher was trying to make a political statement, but his photo is causing quite a bit of controversy.
Brentwood’s Heritage High School’s Black Student Union President Alfreda Charway supported Mr. Spencer:
“[It was a] a good idea because he’s expressing himself because that’s the whole point of yearbook pictures, you’re supposed to express yourself.”
The teacher who posed as Trayvon Martin has not commented on the photo publicly. According to Mail Online, it is unclear why Mr. Spencer wanted to remember Martin in such a way but there are definitely two ways to look at it. On one hand, Mr. Spencer could have been commemorating a young man who’s story affected thousands of people when he was killed back in 2012. The history teacher could have also been trying to stir the pot since the case isn’t something that represents the year 2014 in any way. For instance, if a teacher or student posed with a sign that read “Bring Back Our Girls” (in reference to the abducted Nigerian school girls), it would have more than likely been perceived in a more positive way.
Sophomore Amber McKim shared her thoughts on the pic:
“[I think it’s] okay that he did it, just not in the yearbook. I think he can do it at his house or on his Facebook. But not in the yearbook.”
The history teacher’s decision to pose as Trayvon has caused many people to call for his firing. The principal of the school says that the case is being looked into but, so far, Mr. Spencer has not been reprimanded.
Yearbook photos are often the cause of controversy, regardless of whether or not you hear about certain cases on the news. As previously reported by TheInquisitr, an Arizona high school was recently criticized after putting photos of teen parents in their yearbook. Apparently there was a two-page spread showcasing the difficulties of going to school whilst raising a child.
What do you think of the Trayvon Martin “tribute” by Mr. Spencer? Do you think his photo should have been approved in the first place? Sound off in the comments below.
[Photo courtesy of KTVU]