Punish Students for Racist School Photographs


Target: Naples High School Assistant Principal Mike Joyce

Goal: Punish students involved in racist anti-Mexican photoshoot.

Photos of white students dressed up as Mexican stereotypes with other students dressed as Border Patrol agents were somehow deemed appropriate to include in Florida’s Naples High School yearbook. The school has received widespread criticism from its Hispanic students as a result. Demand that the school punish the students allegedly involved in these racist photos.

At Naples High School’s spirit week this year, white students reportedly donned ponchos, sombreros, and fake mustaches in what for some reason they considered a celebration of their school. They posed for photographs as another student—this one dressed up as a Border Patrol agent—pretended to “investigate” them.

Unfortunately, Hispanic students at the school were surprised to find that the photographs from this ignorant, racist photoshoot were included in the school’s annual yearbook. After bringing it to the attention of the school administration, the principal said that he “regretted that anyone was offended” by the photos but that none of the students allegedly involved in them would face disciplinary action.

Racism and anti-Mexican bigotry cannot be tolerated anywhere, but especially not in a high school setting where young people are developing their sense of social rights and wrongs. Sign the petition below to demand that Naples High School punish the students allegedly involved in these racist photos.


Dear Assistant Principal Joyce,

I am writing you today about the racist photos several students at your school reportedly took and that were included in this year’s yearbook. To be frank, the fact that these students have not yet been disciplined is astonishing.

Anti-Mexican racism is alive and well in the United States. As conservatives’ anxieties over immigration and fears over the fact that American will soon become a “majority-minority” country rise, this racism is only getting worse.

Episodes that many would describe as “innocent” and “fun” that prey on Mexican stereotypes—like these photos—contribute to and perpetuate the culture of anti-Mexican racism. Giving the students involved in these photos the benefit of the doubt, the fact that they may not have been aware of this reality does not make it any less true.

Displays of racism should never be tolerated on school campuses, but that is exactly what is being carried out at Naples High. I demand that you hold these students accountable for their offensive photographs and discipline them accordingly.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Tomas Castelazo

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