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California school asks eight-grade students: Did Holocaust really happen?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/9/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

2,000 students ordered to write essay if Holocaust was 'an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme'

"Holocaust revisionism," a dastardly school of thought that questions if the Nazi persecution and extermination of more than six million Jews actually happened, has long been associated with the fringes of anti-Semitic thought. As horrific and wrong-minded as this may sound, some 2,000 eighth graders in a school in Rialto, California were instructed to write an essay on whether or not they believe the Holocaust was "an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme."

Instructors then offered the students supporting 'material' titled 'Is the Holocaust a Hoax?' which cites the execution technology 'expert' Fred Leuchter, a leading denier, and presents a 'theory' that Anne Frank's diary was forged.

Instructors then offered the students supporting "material" titled "Is the Holocaust a Hoax?" which cites the execution technology "expert" Fred Leuchter, a leading denier, and presents a "theory" that Anne Frank's diary was forged.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
5/9/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Holocaust revisionism, essay, anti-Semitism


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Instructions to the assignment went thusly: "When tragic events occur in history, there is often debate about their actual existence. For example, some people claim the Holocaust is not an actual event, but instead is a propaganda took that was used for political and monetary gain.

"You will read and discuss multiple, credible articles on this issue, and write an argumentative essay, based upon cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe this was an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain wealth. Remember to address counterclaims (rebuttals) to your stated claim."

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Holocaust revisionists have a pat answer to whether this horrendous chapter of the 20th Century really took place: "Jews have created this myth in order to deviously exercise political power and enrich themselves."

In their argument, they cite the two things Jews "got" out of the Holocaust: reparations, and the State of Israel.

Much anti-Semitism stems from the mistaken belief that the Jews sold out the Messiah and caused great grief to billions of his future followers all for a few pieces of silver.

Instructors then offered the students supporting "material" titled "Is the Holocaust a Hoax?" which cites the execution technology "expert" Fred Leuchter, a leading denier, and presents a "theory" that Anne Frank's diary was forged.

"Israel continues to receive trillions of dollars worldwide as retribution for Holocaust gassings," the document continues. "Our country has donated more money to Israel than to any other country in the history of the world-over $35 billion per year, everything included. If not for our extravagantly generous gifts to Israel, every family in America could afford a brand new Mercedes Benz."

District officials initially defended the assignment. "One of the most important responsibilities for educators is to develop critical thinking skills in students," one school-board member wrote in an email to the San Bernardino Sun.

"Teaching how to come to your own conclusion based on the facts, test your position, be able to articulate that position, then defend your belief with a lucid argument is essential to good citizenship."

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