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(San Bernardino Sun)   School district now admits that giving its 8th graders a Holocaust denial writing assignment was probably a bad idea   (sbsun.com) divider line 121
    More: Followup, Rialto, Holocaust, Holocaust deniers, school districts, school boards, graders, Simon Wiesenthal Center, Museum of Tolerance  
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2973 clicks; posted to Main » on 08 May 2014 at 3:28 PM (20 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-05-08 11:54:50 AM
gee, ya think?

they've got worse problems than that. some of the assignment's text was lifted verbatim from a virulently anti-semitic holocaust denial website. they've got at least one serious klansman in their midst.
 
2014-05-08 01:49:49 PM
They were just trying to "teach the controversy."
 
2014-05-08 02:06:36 PM
FTFA:"Hate has no place in Rialto," Torres said. "Hate has no place in our classrooms."

Pretty sure Rialto is nothing but hate

//grew up in the 909
///fark the 909
 
2014-05-08 02:06:41 PM
I don't know if it's such a bad idea. Somebody who can write bald-faced lies despite mountains of publicly-available information to the contrary should be singled-out and labeled a sociopath. You could fast-track that kid for a "journalism" job at FoxNooz or WND.
 
2014-05-08 02:20:27 PM
I know the kneejerk reaction is to say this was a really stupid idea, but I really didn't have a big problem with this when I first read about it.

First of all, as I understand it, nobody was told which side of the "controversy" they had to argue--they could read the material and choose what argument they wanted to make. In the case of Holocaust denial, being required to actually read the deniers' views and "logic" serves to educate everyone about how indefensible those views really are, how they're based on falsehoods, and how they don't stand up to scrutiny.  The more one knows about these assholes, the more one realizes how full of shiat they are.  This is a great example of the old saying, "sunlight is the best disinfectant."  And of course, you can't fully rebut the deniers' arguments and know how full of shiat they are until you know what the hell those arguments are, and what so-called "evidence" they're based on.

It's unlikely that as many people would've had a problem if the essay topic assigned was something like the following:  "Describe what happened in the Holocaust.  As part of your essay, explain why those who claim that the Holocaust never happened are wrong."  And that's essentially what most--or perhaps all--of the kids' chosen theme would've been.  But in order to do a good job writing that, wouldn't they need to have some understanding of what the deniers' position is in order to explain why that position is wrong?

And even if kids were assigned a side to argue pro or con (which, as I understand it, isn't the case here, though I could be wrong about that), that doesn't necessarily make it inappropriate. Sometimes, it's a good academic exercise to be forced to argue for positions you don't agree with--it not only builds analytic skills, but helps one understand the full issue, pro and con.  Anybody who's ever participated in debate in middle school or high school has to do this, as does anybody who practices law, works in public relations or issues advocacy, or works in any number of other fields.  Even in everyday life, it's often a valuable exercise to "play devil's advocate" in order to strengthen one's position and build a consensus.  Nobody would be forcing anybody to change their beliefs--they're only required to state the other side's position on the issue.  I'll bet any kid who was assigned to research and articulate the Holocaust deniers' positions would end up even more educated about how full of shiat the deniers are than those who are assigned to argue the opposite side.  (Though if sides were assigned, then I think that, given the highly-charged emotional nature of this particular issue, the kids should be given an opportunity to object and switch sides if they have particular moral imperatives that would prevent them from properly performing the task, such as, for example, a Jewish kid whose ancestors died in the Holocaust being assigned to argue the deniers' position.)
 
2014-05-08 02:24:47 PM

ecmoRandomNumbers: I don't know if it's such a bad idea. Somebody who can write bald-faced lies despite mountains of publicly-available information to the contrary should be singled-out and labeled a sociopath. You could fast-track that kid for a "journalism" job at FoxNooz or WND.


And in addition to my post above, add in my agreement with this.  I was assuming that none of the kids would be convinced by the Holocaust deniers and choose to write an essay honestly supporting their views.  But if any did, the little idiots should be identified as people they are as early as possible.
 
2014-05-08 03:10:36 PM
Eighth-grade teachers will undergo sensitivity training at the Museum of Tolerance

img2.wikia.nocookie.net
 
2014-05-08 03:18:04 PM
They didn't think this one thru.
 
2014-05-08 03:33:20 PM
Your Orwellian phrase of the day...

"Eighth-grade teachers will undergo sensitivity training at the Museum of Tolerance, she said"
 
2014-05-08 03:33:42 PM
They're still not having second thoughts on the eugenics assignment in biology class though.
 
2014-05-08 03:35:46 PM
You know who else hates San Bernardino nazis?


3.bp.blogspot.com
 
2014-05-08 03:37:30 PM
Stupid. Notice how they always leave the Samoans out that shiat.
 
2014-05-08 03:38:11 PM
It's a really good way to find which kids will turn into sociopaths.  But I'm a 'on the bright side' kind of guy.
 
2014-05-08 03:38:12 PM

FTA:

Rialto Unified School District President Joanne Gilbert, left, listens to Interim Superintendent Mohammad Islam prior to...



Well, there's your problem.
 
2014-05-08 03:38:16 PM
Denying "the holocaust" is a fool's errand, though it could certainly be better defined and put into proper context.

Reading what was done to the defendants of the Nuremberg trials in order to coerce confessions is very eye-opening.
 
2014-05-08 03:38:59 PM

FTA (pt2)

"Hate has no place in Rialto," Torres said. "Hate has no place in our classrooms."

Really biatch? Well who assigned the paper to over 2,000 students? And when will they be fired? Never? Oh, so you do have a place for antisemitic fools. You outta be a FARK mod.
 
2014-05-08 03:41:15 PM

Cyberluddite: First of all, as I understand it, nobody was told which side of the "controversy" they had to argue--they could read the material and choose what argument they wanted to make.


But they were given an essay someone who cited a notorious holocaust denier, Fred Leucher, who promoted bunk "scientific" research on why the gas chambers couldn't possibly have been gas chambers. This was referred to, in the assignment, as a "credible [source]" when it was nothing of the kind.
 
2014-05-08 03:43:18 PM
It turned out to be a good lesson to teach kids that adults are, by and large, a bunch of incomprehensibly stupid farkers.
 
2014-05-08 03:43:26 PM
Strange. How did "Imadinnerjacket" feel about this? Sure, they may have been insensitive to this, but they're Floridians. You know, morons. Educators or administrators, just because they have the power to make decisions, doesn't mean they're good ones.
 
2014-05-08 03:44:26 PM

OnlyM3: FTA:
Rialto Unified School District President Joanne Gilbert, left, listens to Interim Superintendent Mohammad Islam prior to...


Well, there's your problem.


Sounds more like a WWE name.

He should have stuck with his birth day: Ramses McHitler
 
2014-05-08 03:45:15 PM

Ow! That was my feelings!: Your Orwellian phrase of the day...

"Eighth-grade teachers will undergo sensitivity training at the Museum of Tolerance, she said"


It's like court-ordered AA meetings, but for bigots. If anything, "sensitivity training" would only make me hate everybody even more.
 
2014-05-08 03:45:47 PM

Ow! That was my feelings!: Your Orwellian phrase of the day...
"Eighth-grade teachers will undergo sensitivity training at the Museum of Tolerance, she said"


As an eighth-grader (at a time when, like the eighth-graders in the article, her class had been assigned to read the Diary of Anne Frank), my daughter and her class went on a field trip to that Museum of Tolerance.  The visit kinda emotionally traumatized a lot of the kids in the class, including my daughter, who calls herself a Jew (as the offspring of one godless atheist--me--and one Jew, my wife).  On the other hand, at the time I think she would've liked the idea of being assigned to write an essay (like the one in the article) about whether or not the Holocaust deniers were full of shiat, for the reasons I stated in my post above.
 
2014-05-08 03:45:53 PM

BalugaJoe: They didn't think this one thru.


I'm with Cyberluddite on this one; it's a valid academic assignment. The problem here is the knee-jerking Maud Flanders type who can't hold their breath long enough to consider the actual issue rather than just immediately launch into screeching outrage.

Holocaust denial is blatantly wrong, but it's far better for each generation to learn why for themselves rather than simply be told what they should believe.
 
2014-05-08 03:46:29 PM

Cyberluddite: ecmoRandomNumbers: I don't know if it's such a bad idea. Somebody who can write bald-faced lies despite mountains of publicly-available information to the contrary should be singled-out and labeled a sociopath. You could fast-track that kid for a "journalism" job at FoxNooz or WND.

And in addition to my post above, add in my agreement with this.  I was assuming that none of the kids would be convinced by the Holocaust deniers and choose to write an essay honestly supporting their views.  But if any did, the little idiots should be identified as people they are as early as possible.


Gotta agree with you. The Nazi propaganda needs to be shown, and then picked apart and shown why it's wrong. Their propaganda machine was one of the best in the last century. As long as the assignment included actual facts including perhaps even a visit from a holocaust survivor, I don't see how allowing kids to see first hand what propaganda looks and feels like is a bad idea.

Hell, I think teaching the whole first half of the class from the Nazi point of view, and the second half tearing it apart and showing all the flaws in the logic, how the propaganda worked, etc. would be a much more powerful education experience. You would have to make sure you had the right teachers for this, and maybe 8th grade is a little too young.
 
2014-05-08 03:46:56 PM
I'm wondering what topic they could have used that would not have caused some kind of outrage from somebody.   Yeah, this one was a bad idea,  but something that doesn't carried some controversy isn't going to spark much in the way of critical thinking.
 
2014-05-08 03:47:17 PM
They should replace it with an assignment examining "How do the Jews control modern media and how is the United Nations involved in their plot to drive the United States to Communism?".
 
2014-05-08 03:47:18 PM
Who the fark sits there and think this stupid shiat is a good idea. These people get paid well to come up with some of the most stupid shiat to teach to kids. Where can i get one of these jobs?
 
2014-05-08 03:47:27 PM
Matthew Friedman, the associate regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, called the board's statement "a good first step."
"We're glad they finally owned up," he said after the meeting. "I don't know if it mitigates the damage done."


What damage?
 
2014-05-08 03:47:41 PM

zedster: FTFA:"Hate has no place in Rialto," Torres said. "Hate has no place in our classrooms."

Pretty sure Rialto is nothing but hate

//grew up in the 909
///fark the 909


Hehe, lucked out here, 909 was changed way back when to 951 where I use to live ;)
 
2014-05-08 03:48:01 PM
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counterfactual#Comprehension

Once again, "counterfactuals" are entirely normal for a school paper. Happens all the time. No one who remembers being in college should have a prob-

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: But they were given an essay someone who cited a notorious holocaust denier, Fred Leucher, who promoted bunk "scientific" research on why the gas chambers couldn't possibly have been gas chambers. This was referred to, in the assignment, as a "credible [source]" when it was nothing of the kind.


Oh. That's a little strange.
 
2014-05-08 03:48:13 PM

The Numbers: I'm with Cyberluddite on this one; it's a valid academic assignment. The problem here is the knee-jerking Maud Flanders type who can't hold their breath long enough to consider the actual issue rather than just immediately launch into screeching outrage


Once more, the problem is the required readings the students were given, not the assignment.
 
2014-05-08 03:51:00 PM

FlashHarry: gee, ya think?

they've got worse problems than that. some of the assignment's text was lifted verbatim from a virulently anti-semitic holocaust denial website. they've got at least one serious klansman muslim in their midst.


FTFY
 
2014-05-08 03:54:52 PM
The eighth grade assignment "bestowed legitimacy (on Holocaust denial) and equivalency between hate and history," he said.

Well, I was on the fence about this for a while. I mean, it was a big war. Maybe they lost 6 million Jews somewhere along the line. It's 1945, the war is over and everyone comes back from where ever scattered to. Some guy in Poland says "Hey we're missing some Jews. Are they over there, Ukraine? No? Dang. Well, they'll come back when they're hungry." Hungary: "We're you talking to me?" Poland: "No. I said Hungry. Not Hungary." Hungary: "Sors, Poland. I misunderstood you."

I've read the John Hersey book and listen to the deniers who claim claim they all emigrated to Jewtopia, a secret country not on any map because only Jews make maps (true fact!)

But now, having heard that there are eighth grade papers written on how the slaughter never happened, well, I'm sold. I mean, eighth graders are the most dedicated researching and fact checking people in the world. When an eighth grader told me I had cooties for kissing Gina, I went right to the Cootie Clinic for a checkup. And they were right.
 
2014-05-08 03:56:59 PM

AugieDoggyDaddy: I'm wondering what topic they could have used that would not have caused some kind of outrage from somebody.   Yeah, this one was a bad idea,  but something that doesn't carried some controversy isn't going to spark much in the way of critical thinking.


You could maybe make the assignment along the lines of the United States "non-intervention" policy despite many reports about the atrocities in Europe.

Like "Do you think that Anne Frank would have survived if the United States entered the war earlier" or something like that.  I'm sure that there is enough non lunatic sources to give to the students to make a decent argument either way.

I think what is the biggest bunch of crap in this is that someone at the District Office had to approve this. They are blaming it on the teachers, but with the bloat at most districts (Curriculum Coaches, Superintendent in Charge of Curriculum, etc) there is no way an assignment that went out to 2,000 kids wasn't seen by someone at the DO first.
 
2014-05-08 03:57:05 PM

Harry Freakstorm: The eighth grade assignment "bestowed legitimacy (on Holocaust denial) and equivalency between hate and history," he said.

Well, I was on the fence about this for a while. I mean, it was a big war. Maybe they lost 6 million Jews somewhere along the line. It's 1945, the war is over and everyone comes back from where ever scattered to. Some guy in Poland says "Hey we're missing some Jews. Are they over there, Ukraine? No? Dang. Well, they'll come back when they're hungry." Hungary: "We're you talking to me?" Poland: "No. I said Hungry. Not Hungary." Hungary: "Sors, Poland. I misunderstood you."

I've read the John Hersey book and listen to the deniers who claim claim they all emigrated to Jewtopia, a secret country not on any map because only Jews make maps (true fact!)

But now, having heard that there are eighth grade papers written on how the slaughter never happened, well, I'm sold. I mean, eighth graders are the most dedicated researching and fact checking people in the world. When an eighth grader told me I had cooties for kissing Gina, I went right to the Cootie Clinic for a checkup. And they were right.


Do you know how many non-Jewish civilians were killed during WW2?
 
2014-05-08 03:58:22 PM
You know what, one of my second year history classes in university had an assignment like this. However, we had to choose one of the topics from this website:

http://www.revisionism.nl/

As you can see, these arguements are just a stupid and asinine as the Holocaust revisionist history, and demonstate that a lot of revisionists are whacked out loonies.
 
2014-05-08 03:58:51 PM

Dow Jones and the Temple of Doom: Do you know how many non-Jewish civilians were killed during WW2?


I'm guessing you know the numbers without including those pesky Jews.
 
2014-05-08 03:59:58 PM

ecmoRandomNumbers: Ow! That was my feelings!: Your Orwellian phrase of the day...

"Eighth-grade teachers will undergo sensitivity training at the Museum of Tolerance, she said"

It's like court-ordered AA meetings, but for bigots. If anything, "sensitivity training" would only make me hate everybody even more.


didnt south park already do this ?
 
2014-05-08 04:00:50 PM

squirrelflavoredyogurt: Cyberluddite: ecmoRandomNumbers: I don't know if it's such a bad idea. Somebody who can write bald-faced lies despite mountains of publicly-available information to the contrary should be singled-out and labeled a sociopath. You could fast-track that kid for a "journalism" job at FoxNooz or WND.

And in addition to my post above, add in my agreement with this.  I was assuming that none of the kids would be convinced by the Holocaust deniers and choose to write an essay honestly supporting their views.  But if any did, the little idiots should be identified as people they are as early as possible.

Gotta agree with you. The Nazi propaganda needs to be shown, and then picked apart and shown why it's wrong. Their propaganda machine was one of the best in the last century. As long as the assignment included actual facts including perhaps even a visit from a holocaust survivor, I don't see how allowing kids to see first hand what propaganda looks and feels like is a bad idea.

Hell, I think teaching the whole first half of the class from the Nazi point of view, and the second half tearing it apart and showing all the flaws in the logic, how the propaganda worked, etc. would be a much more powerful education experience. You would have to make sure you had the right teachers for this, and maybe 8th grade is a little too young.


Growing up in Britain, I'd get endless assignments about what WW2 was like from the Allies' perspective, which always struck me as disappointingly narrow. I thought it would have been far more beneficial to study things from the German's side; understanding how the Nazi mindset spread and took hold of an entire country is surely the best way of stopping it from ever happening again.
 
2014-05-08 04:02:23 PM

Dow Jones and the Temple of Doom: Denying "the holocaust" is a fool's errand, though it could certainly be better defined and put into proper context.

Reading what was done to the defendants of the Nuremberg trials in order to coerce confessions is very eye-opening.


You're halfway on the retard level. Why not unload both barrels? You know you want to.
 
2014-05-08 04:02:32 PM

BohemianGraham: You know what, one of my second year history classes in university had an assignment like this. However, we had to choose one of the topics from this website:

http://www.revisionism.nl/

As you can see, these arguements are just a stupid and asinine as the Holocaust revisionist history, and demonstate that a lot of revisionists are whacked out loonies.


"A cash reward of  $100,000has been offered to anyone who can send us, by e-mail, conclusive physical evidence of the existence of the moon.  This reward remains unclaimed. "

WTF did I just read?
 
d23 [TotalFark]
2014-05-08 04:02:33 PM
www.popculturetees.com
 
2014-05-08 04:02:51 PM

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: Cyberluddite: First of all, as I understand it, nobody was told which side of the "controversy" they had to argue--they could read the material and choose what argument they wanted to make.

But they were given an essay someone who cited a notorious holocaust denier, Fred Leucher, who promoted bunk "scientific" research on why the gas chambers couldn't possibly have been gas chambers. This was referred to, in the assignment, as a "credible [source]" when it was nothing of the kind.


I dunno, as I read it, it sounds like they were asked to research "multiple credible sources" and comment on them, and they're also provided three articles for background (only one of which is a Holocaust denier article) that it doesn't sound like are necessarily being provided as "credible sources":

www.majhost.com

The questions they're supposed to answer seem to suggest that the "credible sources" referred to are ones they found, which they're supposed to analyze to show how they support or contradict their stated view:

www.majhost.com
But yeah, the description of the assignment is not well-written, and assuming it's intended to be interpreted the way I suggested, it's easily misinterpreted.
 
d23 [TotalFark]
2014-05-08 04:03:52 PM

namatad: BohemianGraham: You know what, one of my second year history classes in university had an assignment like this. However, we had to choose one of the topics from this website:

http://www.revisionism.nl/

As you can see, these arguements are just a stupid and asinine as the Holocaust revisionist history, and demonstate that a lot of revisionists are whacked out loonies.

"A cash reward of  $100,000has been offered to anyone who can send us, by e-mail, conclusive physical evidence of the existence of the moon.  This reward remains unclaimed. "

WTF did I just read?


I work with a prof that has some moonrock samples for study.  That's not good enough, either, because you can just deny (with no evidence) that they came from the moon.
 
2014-05-08 04:04:28 PM

Sudo_Make_Me_A_Sandwich: The Numbers: I'm with Cyberluddite on this one; it's a valid academic assignment. The problem here is the knee-jerking Maud Flanders type who can't hold their breath long enough to consider the actual issue rather than just immediately launch into screeching outrage

Once more, the problem is the required readings the students were given, not the assignment.


No, you got it wrong.   The assignment "bestowed legitimacy (on Holocaust denial) and equivalency between hate and history,"  its self is the problem.  It the assignment should have been  "Studdy the writings of Holocaust Deniers and disprove their position with historical facts"
 
2014-05-08 04:05:10 PM
They actually had to go huddle up with a lawyer to write a statement for them. I am sure the 1st question that was asked was
"Do we really have to apologize for this?"

Superintendent Mohammad Islam  got threatening calls. Heard this one before. cough cough bullshiat.
 
2014-05-08 04:05:59 PM

OnlyM3: FTA:
Rialto Unified School District President Joanne Gilbert, left, listens to Interim Superintendent Mohammad Islam prior to...


Well, there's your problem.


Exactly.  I was wondering how such an assignment even came into being.  Question answered.
 
2014-05-08 04:06:14 PM

namatad: BohemianGraham: You know what, one of my second year history classes in university had an assignment like this. However, we had to choose one of the topics from this website:

http://www.revisionism.nl/

As you can see, these arguements are just a stupid and asinine as the Holocaust revisionist history, and demonstate that a lot of revisionists are whacked out loonies.

"A cash reward of  $100,000has been offered to anyone who can send us, by e-mail, conclusive physical evidence of the existence of the moon.  This reward remains unclaimed. "

WTF did I just read?


Bingo, you get the point of the website. We had to pick one of the essays, and pick them apart as to why we agreed or disagreed with them, in an exercise in the concept of Revisionist History.
 
2014-05-08 04:06:26 PM
Meh. I'm fine with all kinds of things as intellectual exercises, tools to develop critical thinking, etc.

As long as everyone comes out understanding that that's all it was, and that, yes, the Nazis killed millions of people based on rather shady pseudo-science and romantic mythology, knock yourselves out.
 
2014-05-08 04:06:53 PM
The real question is 

'Who came up with the assignment?'


Someone had to have written it. Who was it?
 
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