Stealth Jew-Hate in Middle School

Holocaust-DenialBy this week, the Rialto Unified School District school board outside of Los Angeles was in full damage control, fending off universal opprobrium over a third-quarter English Language Arts argumentative writing/research project given to 2,000 eighth-graders. The breathtakingly ill-conceived assignment asked students to “read and discuss multiple, credible articles on this issue, and write an argumentative essay, based on cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe [the Holocaust] was an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain wealth.”

Most critics denounced the assignment as absurd on its face, since it asked middle school students, after reading a only handful of brief research essays, to convince a reader that the Holocaust, one of the most documented historical events in modern human history, either happened or did not happen. Even more egregious than the notion that the Shoah might not have even occurred was the statement that, as the instructions for the assignment read, “some people claim the Holocaust is not an actual event, but instead is a propaganda tool.”

Given that even American high school students cannot identify, as random examples, the half century during which the U.S. Civil War was fought, name a single Supreme Court justice, identify the intent of the Bill of Rights, or identify Britain on a map of the world, the notion that eighth graders could coherently disprove something that is an historical fact, not an opinion, is obviously a useless intellectual exercise. And critics of the assignment were appalled that students were even exposed to the idea that the Holocaust was a myth in the first place, a notion which only those on the lunatic fringe embrace.

While the shell-shocked spokesperson for Rialto school district, Syeda Jafri, assured the media that no complaint about the assignment had been forthcoming from within the district system, either from teachers or parents, the larger question is how the committee of eighth–grade teachers which conceived the critical thinking exercise in the first place had not anticipated the calamitous reaction to their choice for the essay topic. Presumably, every member of that committee had attended college; some, perhaps, even possess advanced degrees. In an education culture suffused with political correctness—and especially on college campuses where the educators studied for their profession—an enormous amount of attention is paid to who may say what about whom, and what is acceptable thought and speech on campuses where “victim” groups vie for rights and accommodations.

One of the groups that does not fare well on campuses these days, however, is Jews, particularly in the context of the debate over Israel and the Palestinians. In fact, the same careless sentiments that accuse Jewish students of being inherently racist for supporting the “apartheid” state of Israel seem to have been present in the committee room when ideas for this year’s assignment were being tossed about for consideration. Consider how classically anti-Semitic the language of the assignment itself is, suggesting in the same paragraph—not once, but twice—that the Holocaust “is a propaganda tool that was used for political and monetary gain,” and “merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain.” Who is seeking monetary gain? Who schemed to extort the West? Who has global influence over public opinion? Who seeks undeserved profit? For anti-Semites, the answer has always been the same: Jews.

And that is the very clear message transmitted in the essay assignment, that if one accepts the notion of a fabricated Holocaust, he or she also must hold Jews responsible for that vast, self-serving conspiracy. Professor Robert S. Wistrich, one of the world’s leading authorities on anti-Semitism, has noted that Holocaust denial by definition libels Jews, “that, by accusing Jews . . . of inventing the Shoah to extract billions of dollars and blackmail Germany or the West, the deniers add a peculiarly vile conspiracy theory to the arsenal of millennial anti-Semitism and transform the victims into superlatively cunning, fraudulent, and despicable perpetrators,” precisely what the assumption would be of any student who completed the assignment with the thesis that the Holocaust was a fraud, a “scheme,” or a “propaganda tool.”

For educators seeped in a contemporary cultural of political correctness, it is nearly unbelievable that not one person in that committee room failed to see the moral lethality of the assignment’s language. No one has accused anyone involved with the assignment of being anti-Semitic, but in the highly unlikely event that had anyone on the committee had even proposed a topic that touched upon any other intellectually or culturally incendiary topic, it would have been instantly suppressed and never would have made it out the room, let alone on the assignment of 2000 eighth-graders.

The assignment was meant to promote critical thinking, and there are certainly a wide range of contemporary, relevant, though controversial, topics that might have provided a rich source intellectual wrestling for those middle school minds—topics which would not require that students contradict historical fact, and which are still open to actual debate and investigation. For instance, they could debate whether African Americans are socially and culturally inferior to white people in America, a topic for which there is undoubtedly much opinion on both sides of the argument. They could, as Lawrence Summers did before he was forced to resign as president of Harvard University for having done so, question whether the reason that women fail to excel in math and the sciences, and do not therefore fill faculty slots in those fields, is due to a genetic superiority in men, a controversial but oft-debated theory. There are other relevant and current debates in the marketplace of ideas that certainly are open to opinions from both sides, such as whether when a woman undergoes an abortion she is murdering a child, or if homosexuality is mental disorder and lifestyle choice as opposed to a physiological condition predetermined at birth. If the committee wished for students to evaluate politics and theology, they might have asked if Islam is actually “the religion of peace” or instead is actually an intolerant cult that rejects modernity, requires submission by its adherents, represses women, and has a long history of terror, aggression, and jihad against the infidel world.

All of these topics differ from the one actually chosen by the committee in that none of them can be proven absolutely, and all can be vigorously argued from differing points of view—exactly what the assignment in question was meant to inspire. But, obviously, none of them was chosen, and the reason is just as obvious: had anyone on the committee even dared to have articulated any of the examples above, the other committee members would be apoplectic at the very thought of questioning prevailing orthodoxies or offending members of the groups involved.

In the rarified atmosphere of multi-cultural America culture, and particularly on campuses, where certain topics are off limits and the behavior of certain victim groups can never be questioned, the idea that abortion is wrong, or that women are inferior to men or blacks to whites, or that being gay is somehow defective, or that Islam is theologically malignant—all of these notions are essentially unmentionable, proscribed, too intellectually and emotionally volatile to ever discuss openly or debate, and especially as the basis for a homework assignment. None of these topics would ever be considered for use as a critical thinking assignment precisely because, unfortunately, every educator in that committee room would intuitively, and accurately, realize that members of the groups targeted might feel maligned, insulted, libeled, or intimidated by the ensuing discussion.

But when Jews, and the central horror of Jewish history, were the topic, that moral sensitivity was strangely absent, and the lesson of this incident is to be found just there: that anti-Semitism infected the student assignment completely and no one even knew it had entered the room.

Richard L. Cravatts, PhD, is president of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East.


Don’t miss this week’s Gang Gang episode in which the guests discussed the Rialto Unified School District’s Holocaust-Denial assignment in its special feature on The Cancer of Common Core:

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  • AlexanderGofen

    A very thought provoking article, thank you. Let me see: Spokesperson for Rialto school district is Syeda Jafri… And the superintendent of the school district is … Mohammed Z. Islam (sic) ( ) That’s quite telling… Do readers recall that just some 100 years ago the new immigrants into America wished to enter the melting pot and bland into the American identity so much, that they abandoned their ethnic names for the American sounding names…

    Well, as we have citizens with names Mohammed Islam not fearing for their lives (after the 9/11, mind you), and who serve as superintendent in school districts, it ends up with Holocaust denial and you fearing for you life and that of your kids. Wake up America until it is not too late:

    • Seek

      Mohammed Z. Islam — only only can guess the religion. That’s a real stumper.

  • Roger

    There is a desperate and an urgent need for the Muslim community, in order to promote their agenda, to sew the seeds of doubt as to the veracity of the Holocaust. Also many other historical facts. Most recently it is : 911 was an inside job and if it was it was the Jews and if it wasn’t, then the ones that did it were not really Muslim.

  • TheOrdinaryMan

    This is exactly why Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, upon liberating Buchenwald, told his staff to make sure that they photographed and documented what they found, because “in 50 years some b**tard will say this never happened.” So after all this screaming about “Racism,” the wolf has finally come, and no one cares. American schools–actively promoting anti-Semitism–and no one cares. We’re in for it.

    • victoryman

      The fools continue to say, “It can’t happen here.” …… echo from Germany in the 30’s. History repeats, only the names change. Yes, the indoctrination centers known as public schools will continue to twist, or completely ignore, history. Today’s children are taught to exercise their thumbs, not their minds. As Goethe stated, “There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.”

      • WhiteHunter

        Absolutely correct: It certainly CAN happen here, and wouldn’t take much to start.

        Just look at the venomous comments from hate-choked, Obama-worshipping trolls on almost any story on the Fox website, or to a somewhat lesser degree here, and you’ll have no doubt that there are millions right here in America who wouldn’t have the slightest hesitation prodding us at gunpoint into boxcars and camps, and then go home and play with their children on the front lawn with a perfectly clear conscience — exactly as Himmler’s and Heydrich’s SS did.

        And I mean that literally. To them, we are The Enemy–subhuman vermin–and in their minds there are no limits to what we “deserve” at their hands.

        • Rev Jim Jones

          It’s even more impersonal that that. You are not the object rather an insignificant obstacle like a random spiderweb that has the misfortune of crossing their path to utopia.

      • DennisMets

        I have been to many countries and one thing I can tell
        you is the United States is one of the most murderous of them all. We
        have been sold on diversity but if you look around the world you
        see it does not work. Israel will forever be a blood bath with
        Muslims (Arabs) killing Jews. And despite what our president
        says he has made it clear he will stand with his Muslims and racist
        reverends to the end. The president’s reverends and heroes have made it clear
        they hate the devil whites and they will continue to program future generations
        of black youths to carry on the hate for the devil whites. If you take what
        black leaders, reverends and the panthers are saying about whites and put the
        words in a whites mouth about blacks there would be a nationwide freak show on
        about it. Now think about this hate and what they are doing to carry out the
        war on whites? Not only are they pushing to get as many Hispanics into the
        country to get them under the minority
        umbrella and to program them to hate whites they are bringing in thousands
        of Somalian Muslims and others and they are placing them in mostly small white
        communities. This is akin to promoting war because you have diverse
        cultures like black Muslims moving in on peaceful white communities and they are
        also programed to hate whites and think they are entitled. Make no mistake the
        overall plan is to push out whites and by bringing in Muslims that over
        breed everywhere they are you can see in a few generations how they
        will overwhelm the whites that are regulating their families to a smaller
        size in order to send them to good schools and live in safe
        neighborhoods. In other words whites are paying for getting these people
        here to murder and push them out. Anyone can
        see what crimes these Muslims have brought to us as
        refugees and what our congress has become, ESP. since the
        president has only appointed people that share his views of hate and
        entitlement like Sotomayor to make sure

        think that refugees or illegals from another country should get
        preferential treatment over whites that have lived and
        worked for a living)? Black people have a tremendously powerful voice and when it speaks people shake and do crazy things, like the sponsors that pulled adds with the clippers. If whites had that much of a voice we could get a lot of racism stopped against us to. If you do not think there is a war on Christian Whites your naive and stupid, why else would you bring in thousands of Muslim refugees that make no secret their hate for Christians and put them in mostly small white Christian communities? Normally predators are outnumbered and breed by what they prey on otherwise they would run out of food. But in this case the Hispanics and the Muslim refugees are overwhelming the White Christians they prey on and that is
        by design. I guess whites will stand by and get exterminated
        while the white leaders in politics sell them out for a dollar.

        • victoryman

          You are right on target, D.M. Are we still allowed to use the word, “Target.?” Mrs. Obama would have me reported to the thought police. She wants children to now “Monitor” their family members, etc., for “Racist thoughts.” …………….As a final thought, for our country to survive, we need to create more warriors and less wimps.


      The Rialto school curriculum should question the validity of “islamophobia” considering 9/11, Boston Marthon bombing, 1993 truck bombing of the WTC, the kidnapping of 300 girls in Nigeria..

      Examine the current state of Islamism and its War against the entire world.

  • JVictor

    The well-intentioned efforts of the greatest generation to protect its progeny from the horrors of war and to ensure that their children had it “better” than they did have morphed into a horrible monster that allows their grandchildren to be blissfully (albeit dangerously) ignorant of history while being self-absorbed in their own shrines to themselves via social media. They immerse themselves in the glitz of pop culture (I’m sure they know all about their favorite movie/music/sports star) while they make up their own history in order to stay ahead of their peers. Historical facts are boring and subjective while they present their own versions of themselves. Since their world is all about what they think and how they present themselves, they can arbitrarily pick and choose which parts of history they wish to acknowledge and include in their world. The Supreme Court? Isn’t that a bunch of old folks wearing choir robes? The Civil War? Didn’t Martin Luther King, Jr. win that for the north? The Holocaust? Well, I think…

  • Rev Jim Jones

    Liberal Progressives understand programming must start with the youth because they understand our generation is lost to the concept of individuality and thought. Progressives plan is to promote:
    Consensus decisions vice independent thought
    Agreement vice being right
    Right side of history vice morality and ethics
    Indiscriminate values vice concept of good and evil

  • Ban Liberals

    This insanity was always latent, and I MEAN “latent.”

    And then came Obama. And Common Core. And the liberals crawled out of their lairs…

    This is the result of an anti-Semitic President,and an uncaring and lackadaisical Congress fearing being called RAAACIST more than it fears the destruction of the United States as we knew her.

    Antisemitism is a SYMPTOM; progressives and liberals are the disease.

    • Rev Jim Jones

      there’s a reasons this history is being challenged in such a way.

      Through fear tactics such as being called out a racist, on wrong side of history, at war with women, climate change deniers, a homophobic, a 1%ers, etc, the Liberal movement has effectively stale mated any counter view to their political-social agenda. Parents and authorities live in fear of being singled-out, losing respect or jobs for voicing an opposing opinion even when they know they are right.

      Take for instance the issue or young men wearing pants around their knees. You may not like it but have you ever been concerned you might be labeled racist is you voice an opinion?

      or, do you fear being called homophobic for not welcoming homosexual leaders into the Boys Scouts?

      or, been made to feel primitive and superstitious because you have a strong sense of religious faith?

      or, you are narrow minded and not sensitive to particular demographics because you haven’t embraced GW theory?

      This erosion to individuality has successfully gone on for decades however disguised as liberal acceptance but it’s stripping rational behavior, critical thought and spiritual morality, and replacing with common set of indiscriminate values. Our society is being conditioned to a common core of beliefs.

      It may not be the end state every Liberal desires but at some point all it will take is a Pol Pot or Adolf Hitler to harness our society of lemmings for evil purposes.

      • Ban Liberals

        Actually, I WELCOME being called “racist” or “homophobe” or Islamophobe” or any of the other absurd monikers. I really do WELCOME them.

        Because it means I am doing or saying something right.

        Twitter: @LibsHateUs

    • Seek

      I never was that fond of Martin Luther King, to tell the truth. By all evidence, he was either a Communist or worked closely with Communists. J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI files reveal as much. The idea that MLK was a conservative is thoroughly ridiculous, and reveals, if anything, the timidity of fake “conservatives” of the Red State variety.

      • Ban Liberals

        I didn’t say, nor am I, nor was I ever “fond” of him, nor did I ever approve of his antics. In fact I despised them. He split the country and began this insane nonsense we call “affirmative action.”

        Martin Luther King is in my view, the father of racism.

        I agree with your assessment of him, and remember he was also a womanizer, liar, and more.

        I used the image simply to illustrate that as bad as King was, how much WORSE Obama is.

  • Clare Spark

    Better the kids should learn about Arab resistance to the Jewish State after WW2, arguing that the Holocaust was a European problem and that they should not be expected to tolerate a modern state in their undeveloped midst, not under any conditions. Kids could grasp this, but preferably in high school and with much preparation. (For instance: “what is modernity and what is development”? Where was the oil the West depended upon?)

    • Rev Jim Jones

      Holocaust was a problem for mankind not simply European or a particular slice in time. and the lesson is a reminder to all how such horrors can return when critical thought and freedoms are suppressed and replaced with indiscriminate liberal beliefs. Even though we know it to be historically true through first hand accounts, meticulous records, physical evidence, the simple fact this is questioned in such an inglorious manner plants seeds of doubt to be harvested in the minds of generations to come. for example, simply substituting American slavery for Holocaust would bring such a deserved backlash yet the creators of this question show no sensitivity or fear of reprisal.

      • Eric Farquharson

        Is that American history?

        • Rev Jim Jones

          No just the history I learned in Nuremberg, Germany ’65-’68 and having
          visited the various death camps throughout the Nazi occupied territories in
          addition to the records of the Nuremberg Trails. An art dealer we knew was
          admittedly Waffen SS and he spared few secrets; was it guilt or pride we’ll
          never know. His more memorable were from his fellow Einsatzgrupen exploits
          throughout Jewish communities.

        • Rev Jim Jones

          uh oh, FrontPage Magazine is censuring replies.

          but yes this is US, European, World and the only history. hopefully my comments will be released for viewing.

        • Rev Jim Jones

          No just the history I learned in Nuremberg, Germany ’65-’68 and having
          visited the various death camps throughout the Na*i occupied territories in
          addition to the records of the Nuremberg Trails. An art dealer we knew was
          admittedly Waff*n S* and he spared few secrets; was it guilt or pride we’ll
          never know. His more memorable were from his fellow Einsatzgrup*n exploits
          throughout Jewish communities.


      Teach students about the hitler / stalin non-aggression pact of 1939.

      That pact lasted until socialist hitler reneged on the pact and attacked Russia.

      socialism is a Crime Against Humanity.

      I wonder how the Rialto school curriculum deals with 9/11?????????

      Greenwash the blood of 9/11?

  • 1Indioviejo1

    The most shocking aspect of this article is that the parents of the children involved did not complain. Are they ignorant as well as their children are? What is going on in this horrid school district after this blatant attempt to brain-wash kids has been exposed to public light? The people responsible should lose their jobs and followed closely in the future. This is a war, and apparently we are losing it.

    • info warrior

      It’s a war of stupidity, and the stupid will lose.

      Sorry, but kids will continue to learn about the holocaust whether you like it or not.

      • 1Indioviejo1

        Are you defending the Holocaust deniers? It seems that way, since nothing in my comment suggest that I defend the evil people responsible for this assignment. If you subtly imply that the kids which are forced to complete this assignment are learning about the Holocaust, then clearly you are part of the problem and Holocaust denier yourself.

        • reader

          It’s a troll from a sewer like huff po or moveon. It’s finger is soiled by the same substance he brings out in its subtly vile posts. No need to feed.

          • Seek

            How do you know? There are anti-Semitic scumbags on the Right as well as the Left. You can’t simply justify ignoring someone’s point by labeling him a “troll.”

          • reader

            What point? Do YOU have a point? Or you’re another huff po troll?

    • Gee

      Remember that is Northern Mexico – most of the parents are from Mexico and most likely have never heard of it

      • 1Indioviejo1

        This should make people who advocate for an immigration “deal” think twice of what we are doing to our country. We already have the Criminal left to contend with, and with an Amnesty for illegals we would only fatten the lefts ranks in this ideological war.

  • info warrior

    It’s always good to teach kids about the holocaust.

    Never forget!

  • David C. Stolinsky

    Oh, I see, the assignment was merely an effort to promote “critical thinking” on the part of the students. So may I suggest these topics for the students to write on, arguing pro and con:
    Muhammad–did he exist, or was he and invention of those who seek power?
    Global warming–does it exist, or is it an invention of those who seek power?
    Mexico–did it ever control the Southwest US, or is this a myth?
    The Civil War–was it our bloodiest war, or is this a myth?
    Slavery–did it exist, or is it merely a myth to evoke sympathy and guilt?
    Jeffrey Dahmer–was he a serial killer, or did he merely have an eating disorder?
    No, “political correctness” would forbid any of these ridiculous topics for students’ papers. It applies everywhere in academia–except to Jews, of course.

  • carpe diem 36

    “Given that even American high school students cannot identify, as random
    examples, the half century during which the U.S. Civil War was fought,
    name a single Supreme Court justice, identify the intent of the Bill of
    Rights, or identify Britain on a map of the world,” I can see that the schools are not teaching places but maybe babysitting services and Unionized work places. Where are the parents of those kids, do they not know that their children are as bereft of knowledge as the rocks in their yards? do they care that their kids are being prepared for a life of dependence because it is obvious that they are not being prepared for a life of employment. this is so outrageous and yet they kids get their “diplomas” that are not worth the paper they are written on and then go on to universities and are being taught nothing as well. this is the future of america.

  • Chris Shugart

    Had the premise of the assignment been to examine evidence that debunks global warming there would have been a firestorm of holocaust proportion.

    • BS77

      Excellent point. IF you watch Youtube, you will see interviews with STUPID, IGNORANT Americans, many of whom vote….it is both funny and awful, to realize how poor our education system is. . Oh, about the Holocaust…please read WITNESS by Greene and Kumar….just in case you have any doubts.

  • DennisMets

    So I guess it is time to start denying slavery also

    • Michael

      My thought was perhaps the assignment should be for the students to; “read and discuss multiple, credible articles on this issue, and write an argumentative essay, based on cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe [slavery in the United States] was an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain wealth.”

      • Hard Little Machine

        Or perhaps the upside of wife beating, child rape and other Islamic cultural artifacts.

  • Bert

    One ‘elephant in the room’ is the secular majority of American Jews. In 2012 two thirds actually voted to re-elect Obama. They are ignorant of their heritage and indoctrinated by the left. Today their ignorant children are confused and frightened when they encounter anti-Israel and anti Jewish hatred on campus. Having failed to learn from history the easy way they will now have to learn the hard way.

    • Lightbringer

      Sadly, you are right. It is up to us — the increasing number of Jews who stand for Bible-believing Judaism (often called Orthodoxy) — to gently, lovingly educate our many religiously illiterate brothers and sisters. But so many of them have been told all their lives that authentic Judaism stands for leftism that it is a very difficult task. We just have to keep trying.

  • Suzanne

    I am sorry to say this but there are a fair amount of “teachers” out there that have no place being anywhere near a classroom. Plainly speaking, they’re dumb as dirt and completely blind morally. I know this because I’ve been exposed to these “teachers” by sitting in their classrooms and taking their classes. For instance, it wasn’t that long ago, that I walked out an “art class” after one of the students said 9/11 was a “inside job”. No one, not the teacher and not one other student confronted this. In so many words, I said I’d never heard anything more stupid, made up an excuse and walked out of the door – never to return. It’s a sad thing when so many adults in America are so ignorant. If teachers and parents are that handicapped – well, then what hope is there for our children?

  • Simon

    Love paragraph 8 – touché anti-Semites, touché!

  • HamBaconEggs
  • Jo

    What breaks my heart is that not only millions of people suffered and died, but there were also real heroes like Pilecki and Karski, who knew how important it is to gather all the evidence of Shoah and did it at great personal cost, and now their sacrifice and legacy is under attack, and not by some loonies, but in schools.

  • Alexander Pataki

    The should burn all the books that deny the holocaust