Wisconsin may require schools to teach Hmong history — especially the Hmong role as U.S. allies during the Vietnam War — to ease racial tensions.
“All of the difficulties that the Hmong face and experience in the U.S. are due to the fact that there is no formal teaching about the Hmong to the general public,” said Za Blong Vang, president of the Hmong Community of Wisconsin. He spoke in Hmong but provided an English translation of his remarks.
This month, a white hunter was charged with killing a Hmong hunter. Some fear the killing was revenge for the murder of six white hunters two years ago by a Hmong deer hunter, who claimed the victims shouted racial slurs.
I’m not persuaded that hate crimes are caused by ignorance of history. Surely the sort of people who murder others because of their ethnicity are not the sort to be turned around by a history lesson — or, more likely, — a two-minute “mention.” They need to learn self-control and manners, which are difficult to teach in school if parents aren’t demonstrating those qualities at home.