Things not to post on Facebook: Part 34,683
Okay, so I just picked that number out of the sky.
Five high school students (from my old high school) have caused a minor scandal after they were found to have posed with the swastika and other various Nazi regalia during a school trip to the Auckland War Memorial Museum. According to media reports, this included ‘kissing a swastika, making a Nazi salute and kneeling in homage before a flag.’ (This news comes a month after it was reported that first year university students decided that to have an Oktoberfest party with some students dressed as Nazis and others as concentration camp prisoners.) The boys involved in the current incident have now been back to the Museum and apologised in person to staff and war veterans.
The incident actually occurred earlier in the year, but came to the attention of the school recently after the pictures were posted and seen by a former student on Facebook (not me in case you are wondering – I am useless on Facebook). Whereas in the past one might have called up one’s mates and told them about pictures of such tasteless and offensive acts, the age of digital cameras, wifi and social networking means that the pictures themselves can be there for the world to see.
Now, the New Zealand Herald wonders breathlessly, ‘What history should schools be teaching our students?’ (I like history, so super-deluxe with extra cheese.) But seriously, I hope this is just a case of historical ignorance about World War II, Nazis and the Holocaust. In any case, I imagine the five boys concerned will have learnt about, if nothing else, the perils of Facebook.