Ohio Lawmaker Wants To Teach The Holocaust ‘From The Perspective Of The Nazis’

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A Jewish lawmaker in Ohio is deriding legislation to restrict race education in the state’s schools as the “draconian Holocaust censorship bill” after one of the bill’s Republican sponsors suggested that it is appropriate to teach about the Holocaust from the perspective of the Nazis.

State Rep. Sarah Fowler Arthur, who co-sponsored the bill, made the comments when explaining to a local news station why she believes that “divisive concepts” should be taught from multiple points of view.

“Maybe you’re going to listen to the perspective of someone from Poland when they were undergoing similar displacement, or when they were being incorporated into the war and to some of these camps.”

“Or maybe you’re listening to it from the perspective of a Jewish person that has gone through the tragedies that took place,” she said, describing how a hypothetical lesson that complies with the law could unfold. “And maybe you’ll listen to it from the perspective of a German soldier.”

Fowler Arthur also mischaracterized how many Jews were murdered in the Holocaust and why they were murdered in her remarks, originally made to News 5 Cleveland.

“What we do not want is for someone to come in and say, ‘Well, obviously the German government was right in saying that the Aryan race is superior to all other races, and therefore that they were acting rightly when they murdered hundreds of thousands of people for having a different color of skin,’” she said.

Fowler Arthur’s comments, which she said were informed by “some audiobooks on the Holocaust” she had been listening to, are the latest in a series of comments that have implicated Holocaust education in a wave of Republican-led legislation aimed at dictating how race is taught in public schools.

An educator in Texas and an Indiana lawmaker have apologized in recent months after suggesting that teachers should remain “impartial” or offer multiple perspectives while teaching about the Holocaust.

“What we do not want is for someone to come in and say, ‘Well, obviously the German government was right in saying that the Aryan race is superior to all other races, and therefore that they were acting rightly when they murdered hundreds of thousands of people for having a different color of skin,’” she said.

Fowler Arthur’s comments, which she said were informed by “some audiobooks on the Holocaust” she had been listening to, are the latest in a series of comments that have implicated Holocaust education in a wave of Republican-led legislation aimed at dictating how race is taught in public schools.

An educator in Texas and an Indiana lawmaker have apologized in recent months after suggesting that teachers should remain “impartial” or offer multiple perspectives while teaching about the Holocaust.

Reporter Morgan Trau, who conducted the initial interview with her, said on-air that she had brought “direct concerns from the Jewish community” to the representative “a full week before the piece aired.”

Fowler, whose Northeast Ohio district abuts Lake Erie and the Pennsylvania border, previously served on the Ohio Board of Education.

Her bill as written would prohibit state teachers from teaching “divisive concepts,” such as that “one nationality, color, ethnicity, race, or sex is inherently superior to another nationality, color, ethnicity, race, or sex,” in nearly identical wording to other state bills seeking to ban “critical race theory” — an academic and legal concept that has become a rallying cry for Republicans across the country.

View the bill here

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