The Republican House leader in Oregon, Vikki Breese-Iverson, is under fire after a photo surfaced of her son flashing the Nazi salute next to a German fighter jet on a high school field trip. The picture is drawing widespread condemnation.
The photo at Oregon’s Erickson Aircraft Collection shows the son standing before a Focke-Wulf Fw 190 replica with a swastika painted on its tail. It went viral over the weekend.
Rep. Breese-Iverson of Prineville, the state’s minority leader in the House, has apologized on Facebook for her son Alex’s photo, saying he behaved poorly and didn’t consider the impact the image would have.
She said she and her husband spoke with Alex’s school administration about enforcing proper consequences for his actions at school and home.
Breese-Iverson said they strongly condemned his actions and offered their deepest condolences to anyone they had hurt.
Her Crook County High School-attending son likewise expressed regret, writing in a message that Breese-Iverson subsequently shared that it was dumb, and he gets it.
He said acting in the heat of the moment can have negative consequences. He said he was sorry if he offended anyone.
Mother and son have apologies for the photo, haven’t been enough to appease Jewish organizations who were offended. Breese-Iverson was urged to step down and her son expelled from school by the Central Oregon Diversity Project, an Oregon-based organization created in 2020 that promotes the depiction of multiple identities.
Regina Friedland, regional director for the American Jewish Committee in the Pacific Northwest, said the photo shows the urgent need for education on the Holocaust and antisemitism.
The Republican caucus in Oregon’s House of Representatives criticized Breese-Iverson’s action but did not renew calls for her to resign as minority leader.
If the son’s sins should compel the parent to resign, Joe Biden should start emptying the oval office desk into some cardboard boxes.