NEW YORK (Oct. 13)
An official of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare has pledged greater emphasis and more coordinated funding for teaching about the Nazi Holocaust and genocide. Thomas Minter, deputy commissioner of HEW’s Bureau of Elementary and Secondary Education, assured educators attending a conference on that subject that “you will have the support of this Administration.”
The conference, sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith and the National Council for the Social Studies, was attended by some 200 educators from around the country. The three-day gathering at the Sheraton Hotel, LaGuardia Airport, ended yesterday. Minter, who addressed yesterday’s session, urged that President Carter’s concerns for human rights be reflected in the educational curriculum so that young people would become “individually committed to the cause of humanism in their own localities.”
Minter, a prominent Black educator and administrator, said that education generally fails to enlighten young people about “the contradictions between philosophy and practice” in American democracy. He said that although slavery is discussed, it is rarely questioned whether this “inhumane expression of power and form of genocide is to be tolerated.”
He said there must be “a systematic, careful, non-propagandized approach” to achieving inter-group understanding in a pluralistic society before a new generation of Americans can assume “responsible and humanistic behavior in the world of nations.”
MEMORIAL FOR HOLOCAUST VICTIMS
In a related development, the New Haven (Conn.) Jewish Federation announced there will be a dedication of the New Haven Memorial to the Six Million on Oct. 30. A Federation spokesman said that it is believed this will be the first memorial to the victims of the Holocaust to be built on public land–a portion of Edgewood Park made available by the city’s Park Commission–and with contributions raised from the non-Jewish as well as the Jewish community.