On Monday, the school district in Baraboo, Wisc., began investigating a picture in which nearly all of the male students of Baraboo High School's class of 2019 are giving the Nazi salute during one of their prom photos last spring.
There are a few students who don't give the offensive salute in the photo, however. There's one student, in particular, Jordan Blue, who is off to the side of the photo and who appears visibly uncomfortable. Blue, who came out as gay earlier this year, spoke with Madison365 about how the picture came to be and why he didn't participate.
Regarding the set-up for the photo, there wasn't much, according to Blue. The photographer told the students to raise one hand, Blue said.
"Which doesn't give a bunch of teenagers a lot of guidance on how to raise their hands," he said, "I felt upset, unsafe, disappointed and scared. I felt unsafe because I go to school with them, I don't in what they represented and the symbol they shared...they knew it was wrong but they still did it."
In a different tweet, Blue elaborated on why he chose not to take part in the Nazi salute.
"I could not leave the photo as it was taken within 5 seconds. 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 did not believe in," he said.
Blue also said that he had been bullied by these same students.
"I attend BHS, these students have bullied me since entering Middle School, I have struggled with it my entire life and nothing has changed."
He added that "jokes" like the salute should not be taken lightly.
"I truly believe we need to make a change to this horrible act, it needs to stop. Bullying. Immaturity. And just taking things as a 'joke'..."