Teachers at an elementary school in Idaho sparked outrage after a politically-charged group Halloween costume was widely shared online. Photos shared on social media showed teachers dressed up in patriotic costumes but also standing in front of a wall with the words “Make America Great Again” on them. CNN published another photo that’s since been deleted showing other staff in stereotypical Mexican costumes with sombreros, maracas, and exaggerated black mustaches.
Apparently no one involved in the Halloween costumes at Middleton Heights Elementary School thought it would be a bad idea to dress up like Mexicans and depict the American Dream hiding behind a MAGA wall, but we all have our blind spots.
A New York Times writeup of the event explains nicely why the costume is, at worst, in extremely poor taste.
The photos of staff members from Middleton Heights Elementary School in Middleton, Idaho, were quickly met with outrage from the local Hispanic community and beyond. The pictures exacerbated a racial divide in a state that is predominantly white but where Hispanic people are the largest minority group. The episode also came at a time when the president has stoked anti-immigrant animus just before the midterm elections.
The district superintendent, Josh Middleton, apologized for the costume on Friday, calling them “clearly insensitive and inappropriate.”
“We are better than this, we embrace all students who have a responsibility to teach and reach all students,” Middleton said according to CNN.