To say these costumes are in poor taste would be the understatement of the century
Every year, there seem to be a handful of costumes that go viral that leave us all scratching our heads, and at least one or two that are so outright bigoted that you wonder how on earth someone thought it was acceptable. But, when you see an entire group of educators wear something horrifically discriminatory, you wonder at what point enough is enough.
A group of elementary school teachers from Middleton School District in Middleton, Idaho decided to dress up as Mexican stereotypes — complete with sombreros — and Trump’s U.S.-Mexico border wall, which read “Make America Great Again,” for Halloween this year. You can imagine how it all went down.
The photo, which showed about a dozen staffers wearing costumes, the most ironic of which is Lady Liberty, standing behind the wall was posted not to individual Facebook pages of those in the photo, but to the Middleton School District’s public Facebook page, the Idaho Press reported.
Another photo showed them all wearing sombreros and ponchos, shaking maracas, with one woman even writing “MEXICAN” in red letters on her costume, in case anyone who saw it was confused about the intent.
Another day, another racist costume. This is from Middletown School District in Idaho. Please call (208) 585-3027 to say
1) racism is unacceptable
2) they are creating and promoting a hostile learning environment to children
3) what is their plan to make it right? pic.twitter.com/DqUwvP3ROL
— unholy heidi (@heidiheilig) November 2, 2018
As of 2017, 9.5 percent of Middleton’s nearly 7,500 population is Hispanic, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. The initial post has since been deleted, but not before screenshots of it made their way around social media.
“I was shown the photos and am deeply troubled by the decision by staff members to wear costumes that clearly are insensitive and inappropriate regardless of the context,” Superintendent Dr. Josh Middleton says in a video posted to the school Facebook page on Friday. “We embrace all students. We have a responsibility to teach and reach all students — period. On behalf of the Middleton School District, I share sincerest apologies for these insensitive actions and offending our families and patrons,” he continues. “Again, we are better than this.”
The photos come during a time when Trump is making immigration a central part of the November elections. He’s recently accused a caravan of thousands of migrants traveling through Mexico towards America of trying to “invade” the United States, saying, “I don’t want them in this country,” and to consider the use of force (i.e. their rifles) if any troops have rocks thrown at them.
The superintendent said district administrators are actively investigating the incident.