Alarmed by rising anti-semitism, France’s education minister, Luc Ferry, has issued a guide for “civil education” classes urging teachers to show Holocaust movies such as Schindler’s List, Sophie’s Choice and The Pianist. The Telegraph reports:
The guide also recommends visits to former Nazi concentration camps, books such as The Diary of Anne Frank and documentaries depicting the Holocaust.
. . . Mr Ferry said teachers had reported being abused by young Muslims while trying to teach about the Holocaust. He described how one teacher asked a class of 13-year-old pupils about their likes and dislikes. One child wrote: “I like football, I don’t like Jews.”
One prominent rabbi has advised Jewish schoolchildren in Paris who received abuse and threats from Muslim youths to wear baseball hats to cover their skullcaps.
Mr Ferry said that young people used racist insults such as “dirty Jew” or “dirty wog” as frequently as other people said “idiot” or “fool”.
He added: “It’s extremely serious. These words have become banal, light as feathers, when in fact they have a very serious history. The sole purpose of this guide is to give weight back to these words; to make pupils understand that these insults have killed.”
. . . The guide also includes details of the laws that teachers can refer to when confronted with racist acts. “It is necessary to intervene in the slightest incident – even a verbal attack – and not let any of these things pass without punishment or explanation,” said Mr Ferry.
There’s been a 10-fold increase in attacks on Jews in the last 10 years.