A Nevada high school teacher's clandestine photographs of a military getting engaged sparked controversy after she posted the photographs online in an effort to find the two.
In a video montage of the images posted to YouTube, Angila Golik explained how on a nighttime sightseeing walk around Washington, D.C., two weeks ago, she saw a man in an Air Force uniform and a woman alone in the center of the D.C. War Memorial's rotunda. Suddenly, the man knelt down and put a ring on the woman's finger, and the two fell into an intimate embrace.
"He kissed her and her entire body went limp," she wrote in the video's text. "It was a moment of pure beauty, and I could feel the love through my camera lens."
Golik said she tried unsuccessfully to get the mystery couple's attention after she snapped the photo of the two kissing, but they couldn't see her in the dark, nor hear her shouts from a football field's length away. The rotunda was also fenced off, she said.
Golik, who teaches social studies at Carson High School in Carson, Nev., said her only goal was to find the couple so she could give them the photographs, but many YouTube visitors have criticized her for invading the privacy of strangers and seeking personal gain.
"I'm sure they will just be thrilled for your intrusion on their private moment, posting of it online without their permission, and the usage of it to undoubtedly get yourself noticed," said user CaseRed0605.
In a response to the critical comments, Golik wrote that she believed she was doing the couple a service by trying to give them the photos. She would have loved to see photos of her husband's proposal to her, she said.
Before resorting to the Internet, she said she'd tried contacting Andrews Air Force Base to see whether the photos could be advertised in the base's newspaper, but the base said it could not do so without permission from the couple.