The Marietta, Ga. School district has paused the rollout of a new logo for an elementary school in the area of Atlanta, after parents noted similarities to a Nazi symbol, said the U.S. Army Colonel based on the design of eagle wings.
Following backlash on social platforms, the Cobb County School District announced on Tuesday that it has stopped circulating the recently designed emblem for East Side Elementary School in Marietta.
The emblem portrays a majestic bird, the mascot of the educational institution, above the initials ES.
Portrays an eagle clutching a swastika in its claws, the emblematic Nazi eagle, formulated during the 1920s and subsequently adopted as an emblem for individuals advocating white supremacy.
The second-largest school district in Georgia announced plans to postpone the new logo while “promptly reviewing necessary alterations.”
The input statement continues to be said, and the input stakeholder has been based on the design of the U.S. Army colonel’s eagle wings, although we strongly agree and understand the similarities to Nazi symbolism are unacceptable. The input statement continues to be said, and the input stakeholder has been based on the design of the U.S. Army colonel’s eagle wings, although we strongly agree and understand the similarities to Nazi symbolism are unacceptable.
The district has collaborated with all schools to develop logos and conveyed the message that the chosen logo symbolizes the eagle’s pursuit of excellence and pays tribute to the school’s rich history. Parents were informed about the new logo through a message on Monday.
The design received a swift backlash on social media.
Mike Albuquerque, the father of two students who are set to enroll in the school in the upcoming year, expressed to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “I don’t want my children to be seen wearing such symbols on their clothing.” He further emphasized, “The failure to acknowledge the resemblance to Nazi iconography is a significant negligence on the part of the county and all individuals involved in the evaluation process. It is possible that someone did raise this concern, but it went unnoticed.”
Across the street from a synagogue is East Side Elementary.
Rabbi Amanda Flaks mentioned to WSB-TV that she had to take a second glance at the design.
Flaks remarked, acknowledging that the war eagle was employed by the Nazis during World War II and presently utilized by other factions sympathetic to neo-Fascist and neo-Nazi ideologies. “I pondered, ‘That appears inappropriate. It unsettles me,’ and I revisited it on multiple occasions, with each instance evoking an increasing sense of discomfort and unease.”
The school district, after seeing the logo, stated which images would be included, along with an apology from the principal. Flaks reached out to the school and obtained them.
She said that she was hurt on many different levels, adding that the grandchildren of someone who fled the Nazi regime in Germany are her great children.
Stacy Efrat expressed her outrage as both a parent and a part of the Jewish community.
Efrat expressed, “I don’t only want the Jewish community to see the logo, but the entire community. I want to offer a direct apology to our community, not just have the logo taken away from me.”
The latest controversy is only related to antisemitism in Cobb schools, where people challenging the fight against antisemitism began posting hot pink billboards around the Atlanta metro area last month.
Swastika graffiti was discovered in two high schools in Cobb County during the Jewish High Holidays. Earlier this year, a number of middle school students in Cobb County were disciplined for sharing anti-Semitic images on social media.
According to a report by the Anti-Defamation League, the number of Antisemitic incidents in Georgia more than doubled between 2020 and 2021, with a total of 49 incidents tallied in 2021.
“This is not the first time that schools in Cobb County have been deaf to antisemitism,” said Dov Wilker, the director of the American Jewish Committee’s Atlanta region, in a statement about the logo design. “Children who attend Cobb County schools deserve better for their families and schools. It is important to acknowledge that antisemitism does not exist by pretending it won’t make it go away.”