How Anti-Semitism Almost Found a Place in California’s School Curriculum

Aug. 15 2019

On Monday, the California board of education announced that it was withdrawing its proposed model of an ethnic-studies curriculum, which, besides being rife with such gobbledygook as “cisheteropatriarchy,” “hxrstory,” and “misogynoir,” also contained its share of anti-Semitism. Karin Klein writes:

The number of hate crimes against Jews in California increased more than those against any other group in 2018, according to the state attorney general’s office. That, of course, doesn’t include the gunman’s attack on a synagogue in Poway on the last day of Passover this last April. In fact, the only group that experienced more hate crimes last year were Latinos, whose population in the state is much higher. The number of hate crimes against Muslims was less than half that of those against Jews. . . .

But don’t expect to find this or similar information about anti-Semitism in the draft of a “model curriculum” for teaching ethnic studies in public high schools in California. There’s a long list of the kinds of hatred that have oppressed minority groups in California, including bigotry against Muslims and transsexual people. All of the items on the list belong there, but anti-Semitism is curiously missing. . . .

[Moreover], the curriculum encourages students to study the Boycott, Divest, and Sanction movement (BDS) as one of various worthy “social movements.” It defines BDS as “a global social movement that currently aims to establish freedom for Palestinians living under apartheid conditions.” . . . Israel [alone] is singled out [for this sort of invective]. . . . The draft recommends that teachers quote lyrics by British-Palestinian recording artist Shadia Mansour asserting that Israelis [control and manipulate the media].

It’s hard to imagine that a few edits could fix what’s wrong with this supposed model for teaching understanding and critical thinking.

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Read more at Los Angeles Times

More about: Anti-Semitism, BDS, California, Education

 

With Talk of Annexation, Benny Gantz Sends a Message to the U.S.

Jan. 24 2020

On Tuesday, the former IDF chief of staff Benny Gantz, who is campaigning for a third time to oust Benjamin Netanyahu from the Israeli premiership, announced that if elected he will seek to annex the Jordan Valley. He added the important caveat that he wants to do so “in coordination with the international community”—a promise that, as many have pointed out, is nearly impossible to fulfill. While it is easy to speculate about the political calculations behind this pledge, Jonathan Tobin suggests that it is also intended as a message to American liberals:

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Read more at JNS

More about: Benny Gantz, Democrats, Israeli Election 2020, Jordan Valley, U.S. Politics