California high school students seen giving Nazi salute as German WWII-era song plays in background in disturbing video
The eight-second clip shows about 10 boys from Pacifica High School's water polo team at an off-site awards ceremony in December last year
GARDEN GROVE, CALIFORNIA: A group of students from a Garden Grove high school was seen giving Nazi salutes while singing a World War II-era Nazi marching song in a disturbing video that surfaced online recently.
Although the eight-second clip shows about 10 boys from Pacifica High School's water polo team at an off-site awards ceremony in December last year, no coaches or adults can be seen in the video
The clip came to light after it was shared among a small group of students via Snapchat, ABC7 reported
The high school officials became aware of the video only in March 2019 and took immediate action and "addressed the situation with all students and families involved."
The video has since been taken down from the platform.
Since the individuals carrying out the salute had their backs against the one recording them, none of their faces was recognized.
"Garden Grove Unified School District and Pacifica High School strongly condemn a video recorded last year of some students who engaged in offensive Nazi-related gestures," a spokeswoman for the district said in a statement.
The district has refrained from commenting on any disciplinary actions against the students involved in the incident as it was against federal law to make such information public.
Brian Levin, the director for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino told CBS News that the incident was "troubling."
"I think this is indicative of a change where even some obscure Nazi rhetoric ... has now been mainstreamed on a very fragmented internet," he added.
The Garden Grove district said that while it was launching a new campaign to "address issues of well-being and a welcoming climate, including addressing bullying, hate speech/actions, and our role in building inclusive communities which reflect equity and respect for all," it did not feel the need to alert the entire school community about the incident because it involved an isolated group of students.
"I'm shocked that something like that would happen at our high school," Mike Chambers, a former student of the school who lives near campus, said.
"That's one thing that kids just don't understand nowadays. Anything you post ... at some point in time, it will come out."