On Friday, a snapshot of a 16-year-old at a pep rally in Robertsdale, Alabama went viral due to a distasteful handmade poster. The teenage girl posed holding a sign which read “Put The Panic Back In Hispanic” with the school mascot and a classmate who was flaunting a “Trump: Make America Great Again” banner.
The student took to social media to caption the photo, “Put The Panic Back In Hispanic” #dontgetButthurt I’m honestly not gonna care if you do anyways so!! #sorryboutit”. To add insult to injury, the teen girl then posted, "guess who didn't get jumped at the pep rally" on Snapchat according to Fox10Tv.com. The controversial marriage of the two signs immediately gained the attention of Hispanics all over the internet.
With the nation still undergoing the aftermath of immigration law taking a turn for many, the DIY creation quickly took over social media. Thousands viewed and screengrabbed of the original post of the student promoting, what she said, "wasn't her intention," but many are calling racist. The student has apologized by releasing a statement with the family attorney explaining, "That wasn't my intention and was not meant for it to be taken that way. We played the Spanish Fort Toros on Friday night, I was meaning "panic the Toros" considering when I think Spanish I think Mexican or Hispanic. When I realized how people were taking it, I wasn’t going to bring it. But my friend who had it in his truck brought it to the bleachers when one of the boys sitting near me saw it and held it up. I do apologize for making our school look bad, and I do understand any consequences I must face. But I also believe in my right of speech. I did not mean it in any kind of racial way, half of my family are Hispanic. Thank you for your time reading this, I apologize for all the publicity and misunderstandings this has brought to our school." Even celebrities such as Perez Hilton have shared their reaction to the insensitive poster.
— Perez (@ThePerezHilton) September 18, 2017
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Domingo Soto, Latinx civil rights attorney, working on the case with the girl spoke to the AL.com on the pep really incident. "When I first saw it, my reaction was 'I'm very angry. I'm Hispanic and a civil rights guy,'" he said. Soto claims she is mortified by the whole array of the situation and did not mean anything harmful by it. According to My NBC 15 the Baldwin County School Board said it was unacceptable language and that they will be following up on the matter.