High school student gets portrait with hunting rifle into yearbook despite objections from staff

Rebekah Rorick, who attends Broadalbin-Perth High School in upstate New York, had this photo turned down by a yearbook committee. (John Viscosi/ VISCOSI PHOTOGRAPHY)

An upstate New York teenager has reportedly won her fight to get an image of herself with a hunting rifle into her high school’s yearbook.

The Broadalbin-Perth High School yearbook committee objected to the photo, showing senior Rebekah Rorick holding a gun, wearing a camouflage vest, and kneeling beside her pet dog.

“My family has always hunted,” Rorick told local station WTEN. “It’s something I do with my family, and my dog is my best friend. So I decided to put her in the photo. I fell in love with [the picture]. It’s my favorite photo of all time right now.”

The teenage girl and her father, Michael Rorick, took the case before the school board on Monday evening arguing that there is no difference between the senior portrait showcasing her interest in hunting and other portraits showing other hobbies.

Mr. Rorick pointed out that a senior from the class of 2012 had been allowed to post with a firearm. But even more importantly, he said, hunting is an integral part of their family life, the Leader Herald reported.

"We are in the foothills of the Adirondacks,” he told the school board. “Hunting is part of our tradition.”

Superintendent Stephen Tomlinson, who first saw the picture that evening, said that he will allow the picture to be included in the yearbook despite the district's no-weapons policy

“She is not holding the gun in a malicious manner,” he said, according to the ABC station. “She is not pointing it anywhere. It’s to me, in my opinion, a nice photograph of a young lady in the Adirondack region that enjoys hunting.”

Tomlinson added that these issues should be handled on a case-by-base basis.

A representative from Broadalbin-Perth Central School District did not immediately return Yahoo News’ call for comment.

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