Teaching the Holocaust: Sometimes there aren’t two sides to an issue

Trying to understand both sides of a story doesn’t apply to every situation, definitely not the Holocaust.



Lost in time: The identiy of the Polish Jewish civilians and the photographer remains unknown.

The Holocaust was a horrific genocide. Six million Jews were murdered.

That’s a fact everyone agrees on. Well, everyone except neo-Nazis and other Holocaust deniers.

Southlake, Texas school administrator Gina Peddy seems to concur with neo-Nazis that the Holocaust is a topic up for debate in schools. That it’s a topic with “opposing views.”

Peddy informed a group of Southlake elementary school teachers that if their classrooms include books and discussions on the Holocaust, then students should also be exposed to “opposing views.”

After her directive was secretly recorded and posted by one of the training session attendees, Peddy explained that she was just trying to keep teachers in compliance with Texas House Bill 3979. 

Signed into law on Sept. 1 by Governor Greg Abbott, the new law prohibits educators from discussing controversial historical, social or political issues. When these subjects do arise, the law mandates that teachers “explore such issues from diverse and contending perspectives without giving deference to any one perspective.”

The only “diverse perspective” on the Holocaust is Holocaust denial. Hitler didn’t kill six million Jewish people and hundreds of thousands of people who didn’t fit in his picture of a perfect specimen with blonde hair and blue eyes such as homosexuals.

Texas politicians want to rewrite history. 

Their goal is to erase America’s real history which itself is muddled with genocide and colonization.

This both-sides-ism can also be  used to justify teaching teaching slave owners’ perspectives on slavery or even denying the existence of slavery as a whole.

Lively debates in classrooms are an important part of the learning process but the Holocaust is not up for debate. Slavery is not up for debate. LGBTQ+ rights are not up for debate. Human rights are not up for debate. 

Educators should be the ones shaping the education curriculum, not legislators who are out of touch with the reality of their people.

Not teaching history risks repeating it.