Racist, anti-Semitic graffiti found outside high school

A swastika and both racist and anti-Semitic graffiti were found on the outside of Ridgefield High School, prompting Principal Stacey Gross to communicate with students, staff and parents emphasizing the school’s inclusive values.

“We discovered two items of graffiti on an outside area, highlighting both anti-Semitic and racist sentiments,” Gross said in a March 29 email. “One item was a swastika. As a reminder, the swastika was a symbol of superiority and power used by Adolf Hitler to legitimize the Holocaust – a genocidal event that resulted in the death of 11 million people, including 6 million people of Jewish ancestry. The other, as I stated, was racially biased. I wish to emphasize that those who create such statements serve to offend all of us in our Ridgefield High School community and this will never be considered acceptable behavior.

“I know that you understand that these acts, and similar ones toward any group, attempt to weaken our conscience, poison our spirit, and destroy the freedom of all of us. They are actions intended to demean and diminish members of our community, the people that we live side by side with every day of the school year. That type of behavior does not represent the type of school that we strive to be — a school where there are no second-class citizens, all are free to come and enjoy their day, and every student and staff member receives the benefits of civility and human kindness.

"I know that you join with me in saying, 'We will not allow our school to become a platform for hatred and intolerance of any group.  Furthermore, we will not be bystanders to humiliation, and we will not be silent to the suffering of others.'”