Friday, May 9, 2014

The Rialto Disgrace

Michael L.

CBS reports:
RIALTO ( — School district officials in Rialto (California - editor's note) have received death threats in connection to a class assignment instructing students to debate the veracity of the Holocaust, according to reports Monday.

Rialto Unified School District officials first responded last week to reports of the assignment, which asked students to compose a written debate over whether the Holocaust was “merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain.”

The controversial question in the assignment read: “…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…”

The district initially defended the eighth-grade assignment – which was one part of an 18-piece essay – as an exercise to help students “evaluate the quality of evidence made by advocates or opponents of an issue.”
I have been pondering this story for the last few days and did, in fact, call down there to give the Rialto Unified School District a little piece of my mind.  Although teaching students, even 13 year olds, something about the nature of propaganda in political discourse is probably wise, I have come to the conclusion that Abraham H. Miller, emeritus professor of political science from the University of Cincinnati, has the right idea.

He writes:
I am sure we can even find some racists and we could use them, as the current assignment does, for those vital some people and substitute the words, “slavery in America”, for “Holocaust”.

The same assignment would then read, For example, some people claim that slavery in America is not an actual historical event, but instead is a propaganda tool that was used for political and monetary gain. Based upon your research on this issue, write an argumentative essay, utilizing cited textual evidence, in which you explain whether or not you believe that slavery in America was an actual event in history, or merely a political scheme created to influence public emotion and gain(sic).

I seriously doubt if Martinez would run his fingers over his keyboard to defend any of that idiocy as being part of the assignment worthy of his school district. But Holocaust denial, that is a different story. Why? Because Martinez probably believes the existence of the Holocaust is controversial, and a controversial issue is suitable for that kind of debate

Here are some other topics that also would never make it to the assignment list in the Rialto School District: Is modern-day Islamic culture steeped in obscene violence? Write an essay, using critical thinking skills, defending or rejecting this proposition. Draw on explicit events such as the civil war in Syria, the riots in Cairo, and the recent kidnapping of female school children in Nigeria.

You think that one would get beyond interim superintendent Mohammad Z. Islam’s red pencil or that Sayeda Jafri, the district’s spokesperson, would be standing before the cameras defending it?
It could hardly be more obvious and Professor Miller is absolutely correct.  If the Rialto California Unified School District taught children to interpret the slavery of the Africans in the United States as perhaps a propaganda coup on the part of people like Martin Luther King, Jr. - "discuss among yourselves" - then I feel reasonably certain that not only would the African-American community have a major knipshin fit, but heads would role throughout the school district.

And if the district were to assign the question concerning Islam... anything could happen... including real rolling heads.

Just ask Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

By the way, beneath the CBS article is a mere 1,982 comments.

The very first one is this:
dontlethemfoolyou • 11 hours ago
In a land where there is freedom of speech. Everything should be debatable those who know the truth would not be afraid of a debate and would not call in death threats. Those who are afraid to debate are those who are afraid that something hidden might come out.
This gentleman seems to think that the reason that Jews oppose Holocaust Denial is because we have an insidious and hidden agenda with Jewish skeletons in the Holocaust's closet.

As readers of this blog know, virtually the entire side of my father's family was slaughtered by the Nazis in the Ukrainian town of Medzhybizh in 1942.

Did it actually happen or is it a matter of nefarious Zionist propaganda?

{Discuss among yourselves.}


  1. The top person in the Rialto school district is Dr. Mohammed Z. Islam. Just sayin.....

  2. Let's suggest they steer it in another direction: Slavery never happened, the Nakba never happened and hey, what the heck, the upside of beating your wife, killing gays and child rape.

    1. I'm with ya.

      Did the slavery of Africans in the US actually happen or was it merely a matter of a propaganda coup on the part of the African-American leadership to swindle the American people?

      As Ilian Pappe said, "Who knows what facts are? We try to convince as many people as we can that our interpretation of the facts is the correct one, and we do it because of ideological reasons, not because we are truth-seekers.”

      Truth is apparently irrelevant.

      Decide whatever you like.