‘Bible Belt’ County Schools Promote Terrorism Against Jews?

untitledThe Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum. Germans and world leaders turned blind eyes to the growing anti-Semitism in Germany while Adolf Hitler incrementally executed his evil agenda. Despite annual reminders to “never forget,” schools across the United States, and specifically in the State of Tennessee, are once again oblivious to the anti-Semitic rhetoric that has infiltrated our schools.

One such community is Williamson County, Tennessee that sits in the “belt-buckle” of the Bible belt and is one of the 10 most influential conservative counties in the country.  One must ask, how could this have happened in a region of the United States that is heavily populated by Evangelical Christians, including Christian educators?

In November 2012, a Williamson County parent was concerned over the content in her son’s geography textbook for his AP Human Geography class. The passage in question is taken from “The Cultural Landscape Curriculum – An Introduction to Human Geography,” under the subject heading, “Why Has Terrorism Increased?”

The author states:

Distinguishing terrorism from other acts of political violence can be difficult. For example, “If a Palestinian suicide bomber kills several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant, is that an act of terrorism or wartime retaliation against Israeli government policies and army actions?” Competing arguments are made:  Israel’s sympathizers denounce the act as a terrorist threat to the country’s existence, whereas advocates of the Palestinian cause argue that long-standing injustices and Israeli army attacks on ordinary Palestinian civilians provoked the act.

The “Arab/Israeli” conflict is used as an example of why terrorism is on the rise and the difficulty one has in distinguishing terrorism from acts of violence. The writer suggests through implication that the Palestinians are justified in murdering innocent Israelis because they have chosen terrorism as “their” legitimate right to wage war.

Although the author chose the “Arab/Israeli” conflict, why did he not use 9/11?  After all, it is relevant to students’ understanding of the threat America faces in the global war on terrorism.

When applied, the same logic articulated in the textbook legitimizes terror attacks against Jews in Israel as a result of “political violence.”  Were the 19 terrorists who attacked the U.S. in general, and Americans specifically, justified because of U.S. policies in the Middle East?

Regarding the recent bombing in Boston, were the terrorists involved justified in attacking innocent U.S. citizens at the Boston Marathon because of U.S. policies in the Middle East, Iraq and Afghanistan?

Not only does the curriculum promote terrorist attacks against innocent Israeli civilians, but it is factually inaccurate. The historic and archaeological evidence of the Jewish presence in the land of Israel dates back almost 4,000 years.  Furthermore, the textbook defines Hezbollah and Hamas as “political organizations.”  In fact, they are classified as terrorist groups by the U.S. State Department.

A situation arose last year when a high school student in Franklin, Tennessee began to question Israel’s legitimate rights to the land.  Upon further questioning, the parents discovered that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas was at the United Nations in New York City. The Franklin High School Human Geography teacher invited a guest speaker to the class to discuss the Middle East conflict on November 29, 2012, the same day as the UN’s vote on the Palestinian Authority’s non-member state status.

As a result of comments made by the guest speaker, the textbook, the teacher’s comments and additional handouts on the topic, the student assumed that Israel did not have a legitimate right to the land.  The parent then questioned another student from the class who stated, “If it weren’t for this class, we wouldn’t know anything about the dangerous Zionist agenda.”

The parents met with the Franklin High School faculty in December to present the concerns articulated in the curriculum and requested that the school take action by providing an alternative textbook that would offer factually accurate information. Not only were their requests denied, they were also insulted when the Williamson County superintendent of curriculum, Tim Gaddis, suggested they were bigots at the close of the meeting.

The Williamson County superintendent, Dr. Mike Looney, repeatedly stated that the parents are taking the quote in the textbook out of context.  However, other Jewish and Christian leaders have also stated that the quote is unacceptable.  For example:

Russell D. Moore, president-elect of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, says he uses provocative questions to help “teach people how to wrestle through difficult questions and identify motives behind actions.”  He said, “I use provocative case studies when teaching ethics.”   However, Moore said he believes the passage “crosses a moral line beyond intellectual provocation.  The [killing of] innocent civilian Israeli teenagers by terrorist groups is not a morally complex question, it is clearly evil,” he said.  “This is compounded by the horrific anti-Semitic violence the world has seen over the last century.  If I were a parent of a child in this school system, I would be upset also.”

Mark S. Freedman, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee, stated:

It has come to our attention that a textbook currently being used by the Williamson County Schools seeks to balance acts of terror with legitimate political disputes.  We are extremely concerned that Williamson County public school students are being led to believe that terrorist acts of Palestinian suicide bombers can be justified as “wartime retaliation” against Israeli government policies.  In our view such a question should never have been asked in such an inappropriate manner, as is evidence in this textbook.  To create moral equivalency between specific acts of terror and legitimate territorial disputes that are political in nature serves to legitimize wanton and pre-meditated violence against innocent civilian victims.

Arnold Cohen, Chair of the Knoxville Jewish Federation states:

Do not think that your child is protected if they are in a “Christian” or “private” school.  This curriculum is being peddled to our children around the state and across this nation.  Parents must take action and demand accountability of our educators to remove this type of biased curriculum from our elementary, junior and senior high schools, as well as our schools of higher learning.

The Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum, and in the words of Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, “Indifference to evil is evil.”

Parents of students in Williamson County Schools are calling on the Williamson County School Board to remove the textbook in question and implement stricter guidelines with regard to the selection of curriculum in adherence to the highest achievement standards that parents expect for students in Williamson County.

Tax-paying citizens have made tremendous financial investments to send their children to Williamson County schools.  Mistakes such as these are unacceptable. The public should expect nothing less than excellence from all schools and certainly from those employed to produce the next citizens of a free, fair and independent nation.

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  • Dave Crockett

    Actually cutting off the ding dongs of anti-Semites is the highest and most moral form of resistance and protest against injustice.

    • silver gonzales

      Anti semites tend to have very small ding dongs such that even a Jewish girl would laugh at and most likely has.

  • Frank Selch

    The question, "how can this happen in a region of the United States that is heavily populated by Evangelical Christians, including Christian educators?" is not difficult to answer. Until churches across the country begin to teach that God gave that land to Abraham and his descendants forever (i.e. the Jews) this can only get worse. Until Bible believing Christians take a stand alongside Israel nothing will change. But as long as the Gospel of John (i.e. the lips of Jesus) is allowed to call the Jews 'sons of the devil, etc, antisemitism will continue to flourish with another Holocaust ant the other end.

    • 1American Thinker

      Same thing happening in Newton, Mass.,home to many Jews. It seems it is the Saudis donating these textbooks and providing free educational seminars to teachers pushing this garbage thru Harvard recommended curriculum.
      http://www.wickedlocal.com/newton/news/x197860969

    • Defcon 4

      I believe that particular narrative refers to Yeshua addressing an audience. His words were directed at
      this audience not Jews in general, otherwise, why would Yeshua bother preaching in Jerusalem at all? Or Judea? Or Israel? If all Jews were sons of the devil then why did Yeshua spend so much time preaching to them?

    • marcy

      And to that I say amen. the churches use to influence the world and now the world influences the church.What a sorry state we are in

      • You Know Who

        And when they influenced the world it was in a violent way

    • hgerald

      Jesus did not call all Jews "sons of the devil;" he was speaking to the religious leaders, who were hypocrites and opposed Jesus and His message.

    • Tom T

      If you have God's word at hand, KJV Bible and will read John 8: 12-59, and if you are not as the Pharisees that he was talking to you will understand that the Gospel of John is not calling God's chosen people sons of the devil, but it was the Pharisees who inforced the law and yet corrupted it themselves. you should pay close attention to verse 47 for your own sake.

  • Tan

    The Left is going after conservative schools now. Wake up people. This is part of the Neo-Marxist/Islamist agenda. Indoctrination and Sovietizing the US needs to stop.

  • kate5778b

    Christian schools only follow the 'Christian church' agenda, the church of Scotland for instance had denied the everlasting promises of land and protection from YY – but there won't be a haemorrage of people from the church of Scotland, just like there wasn't from the church of England. True believers don't go to churches as they don't keep the times and dates nor follow the strange doctrinal practices, nor their stance on Israel and the poor 'palestinians' and anyway not welcomed there as seen as a threat and/or legalistic because of following the 'weak and beggerly law' always misquoted by the church when it's saying the same thing as Isaiah 1:12-5.

    Useful info for your kids:

    1. Why did not the 'palestinians' name Jordan 'Palestine"? http://www.timesofisrael.com/leaders-grappled-ove
    2. Here's all the info you need for the 1922 Mandates of Palestine: http://www.mythsandfacts.org/conflict/mandate_for
    3. 1930s evidence from European anti-semitic graffiti that EVERYONE knew Jews hail from Palestine/Israel: http://collections.yadvashem.org/photosarchive/en

    Print these out and explain them to your kids, give to friends whose children are taking GCSE/A level or under/grad degrees – give them to the teachers/lecturers………..it's those that don't know that need the info.

  • S.Smith

    The same devil that controls Islam/fascism/communism has infiltrated the Christian churches in the US and most of Europe.
    Although many have described Islam as " the devil's greatest victory" , coaxing Christians slowly but surely to anti-semitism and therefore on the side of Muslms and eventually all totalitarianism, is icing on the cake for the father of lies.He managed under Hitler but that was limited to Germany at the time, now widespread !
    Part of the great " falling away" as described in the Bible ?
    Whatever, these "Christians" will reap what they sow.

    • You Know Who

      in the 1920 christians in Europe taught anti-semiitism. THis has happened all throught christian history. That is what motivated HItler.

  • κατεργάζομαι

    RE: "‘Bible Belt’ County Schools Promote Terrorism Against Jews?"
    (quote) "The Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum."

    Conversely: The German Holocaust did not happen because of the American Bible Belt.

    Don't mix history after the fact, and don't go there.

    Apostasy is rampant within the evangelical church today. It has nothing to do with the Holocaust!

    At a certain point in the future, there will be a total rejection of biblical Christianity, succeeded by the religion of the Antichrist; it will maintain a veneer of Christianity that will prove acceptable to all religions.

    This perversion of Christianity doesn’t just suddenly happen. The deception process began long ago and various aspects of this apostate religion have and will continue to ensnare many believers throughout its development.

    In the First Epistle of Paul to Timothy, 2000 years ago……

    Timothy was charged to oppose False Teachers:

    1 Timothy 4 -"The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. 2 Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.

    • Looking4Sanity

      Amen! I found the tone and implications of this article every bit as offensive as the "educational" material being railed about. It just goes to prove that @$$h0les come in all faiths and denominations. You'd think that people as touchy about themselves as Jews are would be a little more selective when choosing how they frame their arguments.

      • κατεργάζομαι

        Replying to Looking4Sanity
        RE: "Amen! I found the tone and implications of this article every bit as offensive as the "educational" material being railed about"

        WOW! Thank you. I am comforted that others may have shared my take.

        How soon they forget that tens of thousands of "Bible Belt" troops paid the ultimate sacrifice defending our allies against Germany.

        Why would one need to incorporate the designation of "The Bible Belt" as it paints a broad connotation that invites controversy. It is often intended as a pejorative. Which suggests the author has their own prejudices. Even within "The Bible Belt" there is persecution against…..wait for it,….. against the Bible.

        The persecutions against Israel, and the Jews, is prophesied. It IS, was, and always shall be spiritual battle.
        "IT IS WRITTEN!"

        • Looking4Sanity

          You're welcome. And I'm glad you beat me to the first reply of this kind. I was having trouble putting the words to my objections and you nailed it pretty well. The only thing we left out is that the school in question is a PUBLIC school. For the life of me I can't figure why the author decided to put Christianity in the crosshairs for this story. It's not like public schools are huge proponents of Christianity. The whole tenor of the article was gratuitously slanderous in that regard.

      • Saul

        "I'm hoping for a nuclear holocaust myself. I wouldn't shed a tear if the whole country was reduced to cinders. It's no more than we deserve. "

        Your nuclear holocaust shall be in your next life. No one will shed a tear for you because you had a choice to repent.

  • Chezwick

    "Education" in America and Europe today is almost more harmful than it is beneficial. My hope is that these parents organize with others and continue to push for changes in textbooks. As for Tim Gaddis, a pox on his house. He should be compelled to make an open apology to these good folks.

  • http://www.clarespark.com clarespark

    Rural America is an appropriate place to visit and to educate about antisemitism and indifference to the Holocaust in general. FDR didn't intervene in part because of hostility to Jews widespread in America owing to isolationism. Does anyone remember Lindbergh and his infamous Des Moines speech? See http://clarespark.com/2012/09/29/index-to-blogs-o….
    "Index to blogs on antisemitism." I have a short explanatory paragraph on the index.

  • Bert

    A major element here is the failure of the U.S. Jewish community to ever conduct a proper campaign to educate their own youth and the larger community as well. Notice also the silence of the 40 plus Jews in Congress who are all Democrats, with one exception. The Jews have left the field open to the Muslims and anti-Semites so there is really no contest. When Pam Geller tries to tell the ugly truth leftist Jews rise in opposition and the rest remain mostly silent.

    • PhillipGaley

      Was it in the Great Revolt (66 A.D. to 70 A.D.) that, one of the Jewish zealots burned Jerusalem's large and ample supply of dried food?

  • archie

    Quote: “Not only were their requests denied, they were also insulted when the Williamson County superintendent of curriculum, Tim Gaddis, suggested they were bigots at the close of the meeting.” Hmm … give him a call and ask him why he would say such a thing: Home (615) 591-2525 — 1712 Decatur Circle, Franklin, TN 37067-6500. I’m sure he has a good answer.

  • archie
  • Jim

    Would Jesus condone suicide murder against innocent Jewish children as the new Liberal Fundamentalist bosses are doing.

    The neo Christian Bosses do not think the self perceived Muslim Victims should turn the other cheek.
    Wasn't that what Christ preached?

    Why do not the Neochristian Bosses go preach the doctrine of the "Other Cheek" to the Muslims of Palestine

    In fact they could also preach Islamic doctrine of "An Eye for an Eye"
    as opposed to the non Islamic practice of a "Murder for an Eye"

    a "Murder for an Eye".

  • patriothere

    If somebody bombed the FBI building it is still terrorism. If it was an act of violence that instilled terror in the hearts and minds of people that act was terrorism and the perps were terrorists.

    There doesn't always have to be a political overtone to it.

  • patriothere

    "The parents met with the Franklin High School faculty in December to present the concerns articulated in the curriculum and requested that the school take action by providing an alternative textbook that would offer factually accurate information. Not only were their requests denied, they were also insulted when the Williamson County superintendent of curriculum, Tim Gaddis, suggested they were bigots at the close of the meeting."

    Well, yeah. That's because they didn't want a textbook based on peer reviews. They wanted a book based on lies and propaganda.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      "Well, yeah. That's because they didn't want a textbook based on peer reviews. They wanted a book based on lies and propaganda."

      The Saudis are liars, and not our peers.

  • anonymous_econ

    “If a Palestinian suicide bomber kills several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant, is that an act of terrorism or wartime retaliation against Israeli government policies and army actions?”

    This is the thinking of academics on the Left. They didn't state exactly what the specific actions of the Israeli government or the Israeli army were. Why not? So, faculty could cover their tracks by claiming they were only using this extreme example as a way of stimulating discussion in the classroom. It's all covered by the tenets of Academic Freedom. They will say the asymmetrical aspects of the comparison were extreme on purpose as a means evoking a reaction from the students.

  • http://twitter.com/paulvmarks @paulvmarks

    Even in the above article there is no REPLY to the charges, For example, the Israeli military does not target ("launch attacks on") ordinary civilians. And the land was mostly voluntary bought (often as far back as the 19th century – indeed there are Muslim Arabs living on land that was bought by Jews over a century ago). Of course a governmnet school system (even in a conservative area) will push fashionable leftist causes (that is what government school systems do), but even if there was no government school system – one would still need to clearly reply to the claims.

  • madmemere

    Excellence in our schools – -YES and, above all else, accuracy AND honesty in the curriculum they are taught! And folks, you taxpayers (the ones paying the bill), if your school board and administration refuse to “listen”- -FIRE THEIR BUTTS!!

  • Eric

    I demanded that 3 billion dollars a year of our tax money not go to a facist ethnostate stolen from its rightful owner by Rothchilds, but thats not really working. In fact they even blew up our world trade center buildings and blamed muzzies to enlist our help so they could take over the remaining world banks they dont already own. Destroy Zionism and their lobbys in our government manned by their, loyal only to Rothchild, disapora!