On June 30, 2022, The Deborah Project’s Litigation Director, Lori Lowenthal Marcus, joined Jonathan Tobin on the JNS podcast, “Top Story.” Marcus explains that a group calling itself Liberated Ethnic Studies, supported by political activists and the teachers’ unions, has used a California law mandating the teaching of ethnic studies to push a curriculum steeped in critical race theory and hatred of Israel.
“What the curriculum does is say over and over again that Israel is a colonialist settler white state that engages in apartheid, genocide, and land theft, and the Palestinians are the indigenous people,” says Marcus. “And the definition of apartheid includes what happens in Israel—that’s in lesson plans for kids. And settlers are defined as Jews who have stolen the land and the homes of … the indigenous Palestinians.
Besides being a scandal for what it’s doing to public schools, the implications of this curriculum going unchallenged are even more worrisome, she points out. “If we think the college campuses are bad now for pro-Israel students, just wait until these children graduate from these schools after having been marinated in this hatred, starting at pre-kindergarten,” she says. What’s more, she asserts, you can draw a straight line from this kind of anti-Israel propaganda to the anti-Semitic violence that took place in Los Angeles last spring during the fighting in Gaza.