Several Wisconsin high school students were caught on camera giving what appears to be a Nazi salute at prom last spring, and school officials are demanding answers, Madison365 is reporting.
The months-old photo, taken last spring around the time of Baraboo High School’s (BHS) prom, surfaced on social media this week when it was posted to a website where BHS alums, students, and family members shared photos of proms past. The website is managed by a local businessman, who, as of this writing, has declined to comment on the photo.
In the photo, which you can see below, a group of several dozen young men, bedecked in their prom attire, appear to have their arms extended at an angle, palm open and facing downward – the traditional salute of the Nazi party. When it was posted on the original website, whoever posted it gave it a rather telling caption.
“We even got the black kid to throw it up #BarabooProud.”
If anybody from Baraboo High School in Wisconsin can clue me in on why it appears the entire male class of 2018 is throwing up a Sig Heil during their prom photos - that would be great.— Jules Suzdaltsev (@jules_su) November 12, 2018
h/t @CarlySidey pic.twitter.com/BL8lDVLMA4
The photo has since been taken down from the website on which it originally appeared. The Baraboo businessman who manages the site wrote in a post that he apologized for it being there.
“Due malevolent behavior on the part of some in society; this page has been modified. It is too bad that there are those in society who can and do take the time to be jerks; knowingly and willingly to be jerks! … To anyone that was hurt I sincerely apologize.”
You can still see the original post, and the album in which it was contained, in archive form on the Web Archive. On that archive, you can see a photo of the same group of young me with their hands folded in front of their waists. Similar pictures show a similar-sized group of young ladies, in front of the same building and similarly clothed in their prom attire, not giving a Nazi salute.
One of the students in the photo has been identified by the Daily Beast as Jordan Blue and is described by the website as “looking visibly uncomfortable” in the photo. He says that the photographer told the young lads to make the salute.
“The photographer took the photos telling us to make the sign, I knew what my morals were and it was not to salute something I firmly didn’t believe in.”
Meanwhile, Baraboo High School officials say they are “looking into” the photo and will make any appropriate decisions about discipline and possible referral for criminal charges after its investigation is complete.