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NYC Educator Fired for Not Doing ‘Wakanda Forever’ Salute, Lawsuit Alleges

A longtime educator from the Bronx is suing New York City’s Department of Education (DOE), claiming that she was fired after refusing to make the “Wakanda Forever” salute to black power during a school superintendent meeting. Rafaela Espinal, formerly head of New York’s Community School District 12, said in a $40 million lawsuit filed earlier this month that she was abruptly fired without any given reason. She blamed her firing partly on not joining her peers to perform the arms-across-the-chest gesture from the fictional African kingdom of Wakanda featured in Marvel’s 2018 comic film “Black Panther.” According to the lawsuit, then-Bronx superintendent Meisha Ross Porter, who was later promoted to executive superintendent, often asked attendees at professional meetings to do the Black Panther salutes in solidarity with the real-life militant socialist group that bears the same name, of which Porter’s father was a member. Espinal, who is of Dominican ancestry …

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