PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. - Sweet treats at a Jewish teen's birthday party in Paradise Valley turned into an offensive message after two young party goers decided to decorate their cupcake with a swastika symbol.
Pictures of the swastika topping began spreading on social media after the teen's mom posted about what happened on Facebook, writing that she hoped it could be used as a teaching moment for parents.
According to the post the girls are all friends and told the Jewish teen's mom they did it to “be funny."
The teen's mother also posted that her daughter and the girls at the party had just had a lesson on the holocaust, so she believed they knew very well what the symbol meant.
While she initially didn't respond to 12 News request to speak to her, the mom later told us that it was two girls who decorated one cupcake together at the party.
Carlos Galindo-Elvira, the director of the Anti-Defamation League in Arizona says parents need to teach their children about the meaning symbols tied to acts of hate like the swastika.
"When you joke with symbols like the swastika you begin to normalize them and make it very casual within our society,” Galindo Elvira told 12 News.
In an update posted online the mother said the girls had apologized and that their parents had spoken with them about the severity of using symbols like the swastika. The mom told 12 News that she saw this as a teaching moment for those involved and their classmates.
Galindo-Elvira hopes other parents can use the incident as a chance to do the same.
Editor's note: A previous version of this story stated multiple cupcakes were decorated with a swastika. However, the mother clarified to us that two girls decorated one cupcake.