Submitted by: Veronica Coffin
A cheer-dance team in Mexico drew criticism Friday for a routine in which they displayed flags with swastikas, dressed in pseudo-military outfits and one girl appeared to toss a Nazi salute to the crowd.
The performance by about two dozen girls aged 10 to 16 and one boy came at a cheer-dance competition in the western city of Guadalajara at the end of May.
The girls wore red armbands, camouflage dance outfits and carried red flags as they strutted in marching-style formations.
A video of the performance drew condemnation when it began to circulate Friday on social media sites.
On local news sites, many readers said the girls probably didn’t know much about the Nazis, and blamed the event organizers and the team’s choreographer for the questionable routine.
Event organizer Enrique Casas said he would not identify the team for security reasons, because the comments on social media sites “have been a little aggressive.”
“The comments have gone beyond freedom of expression … and have included direct insults against the girls.”
Casa said the routines were the individual choice of the 192 teams that participated.
But Casas said that organizers may put safeguards on the next competition “to avoid hurting people’s feelings.”
“The invitations are going to be restricted in certain ways,” he said “to avoid social conflicts.”
Mexico doesn’t have any significant neo-Nazi movements. Cheer/dance competitions combine cheerleading and dance routines.