PROF GIORDANO: K-12 conditions students to hate Jews in college

Illiteracy regarding basic history is not limited to the Holocaust. Only 13% of students demonstrate proficiency in U.S. History, including our involvement in World War II.

Nicholas Giordano is a professor of Political Science, the host of The P.A.S. Report Podcast, and a fellow at Campus Reform’s Higher Education Fellowship. With 2 decades of teaching experience and over a decade of experience in the emergency management/homeland security arena, Professor Giordano is regularly called on to speak about issues related to government, politics, and international relations.   

Many people are aghast at the pro-Hamas, anti-Israel protests that have erupted on college campuses throughout the country, but no one should be surprised. Since 2009, Campus Reform has been reporting on radical anti-Semitism in higher education fueled by a far-left ideology. 

This ideology has supplanted scholarship, debate, and the pursuit of truth. However, students learn to despise Jews long before they enter college. The problem begins in the K-12 system where basic history is ignored, and students are not taught how to think critically, leaving them more susceptible to the anti-Semitic brainwashing that occurs at the college level. 

Over 1,400 innocent men, women, children, and babies, including 32 Americans were killed in the barbaric Hamas attacks. Instead of displaying outrage at the Hamas massacre, high school students staged walk-outs around the country, including in California and Michigan, to protest the Israeli response to the savage attacks. 

Students chanted “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” which is a call for the elimination of Israel. I suspect they do not realize that the slogan calls for genocide as they accuse Israel of ethnic cleansing. These students also remain oblivious to the fact that groups like Hamas, Hezbollah, and the leaders in Iran advocate for the complete annihilation of Israel and its people every single day. 

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Rather than denounce Hamas, these students are unwittingly calling for a second holocaust, and it is clear they know little about the first Holocaust. A Pew Survey found that 43% of students aged 13 to 17 are unaware of the specific time frame during which the Holocaust took place. Only 38% knew how many Jews were slaughtered during the Holocaust, and only 33% knew that Hitler rose to the chancellor of Germany through the democratic process. The numbers would be worse had the survey not provided multiple-choice options.

Illiteracy regarding basic history is not limited to the Holocaust. Only 13% of students demonstrate proficiency in U.S. History, including our involvement in World War II. Compounding the problem, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives made things worse and continues to perpetuate an education system that promotes ignorance over learning and critical thinking. 

For example, consider how the Oregon State Board of Education unanimously decided that students do not need to demonstrate a mastery of reading, writing, or math in order to graduate. Their justification for such ridiculous standards is that it harms “students of color,” which in and of itself is racist.

Under DEI, California’s Santa Ana Unified School District adopted an anti-Semitic curriculum within its ethnic studies program, equating Israel with “settler colonialism,” perpetuating the demonization of Israel. An earlier version of the ethnic studies curriculum adopted by the state claimed that Irish, Polish, and Jewish immigrants arrived in America with built-in “white privilege,” no matter the hardships they faced.

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From kindergarten all throughout college, students are bombarded with anti-American, anti-Western, and anti-Israel information. Everything must be viewed through the prism of race, privilege, and oppression, but only when it matches a particular political agenda. 

As the education system pushes a victimhood mentality and produces social justice warriors, it is impossible not to notice the hypocrisy. The social justice warriors were swift to speak out in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, yet their response to Hamas has been muted. It appears Israeli lives hold less value.

The fact that students and teachers are unable to condemn Hamas, and some even go so far as to push a false moral equivalency between a terrorist organization and Israel, reveals that our education system has failed. Without a solid K-12 educational foundation, impressionable students have been susceptible to the hate-filled propaganda that has taken over college campuses. Students are being brainwashed by ideological zealots and the result is a student body devoid of employing reason, logic, and quite frankly, common sense.

Editorials and op-eds reflect the opinion of the authors and not necessarily that of Campus Reform or the Leadership Institute.