Monday, April 15, 2013

Does the Williamson County School System promote antisemitism?

Does the Williamson County School System promote antisemitism? According to Laurie Cardoza-Moore it does. Ms Cardoza-Moore is the President of a group called Proclaiming Justice to the Nations. The website of PJTN says, "PJTN was established to educate Christians about their Biblical responsibility to stand with their Jewish brethren and Israel, utilizing the powerful medium of documentary films to facilitate dialogue between the Christian and Jewish communities." Ms Cardoza-Moore may be best know for her leadership roll in opposing the building of a Mosque in Murfressboro.

Ms Cardoza-Moore is calling on people to turn out tonight to protest at the Williamson County School Board and take a stand against antisemitism. Specifically what is being protested is a textbook that, according to Ms Cardoza-Moore, "confuses 'terrorist attacks' with 'political violence.'"  The specific example she sites is this:

If a Palestinian suicide bomber kills several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant, is that an act of terrorism or wartime retaliation against Israeli government policies and army actions?
I am myself not convinced that that is an example of antisemitism and I really doubt the Williamson County School Board is guilty of promoting antisemitism. If the book is age-appropriate for the students, the quoted excerpt very well may be an appropriate means of getting students to think about current events and take an interest in the subject matter. I would bet that most students would answer the question by saying that killing teenagers in a restaurant is terrorism.

If I lived in Williamson County, I would not join the protestors. Maybe those who fear that antisemitism is being taught in the Williamson County Schools should read the textbook and share their concern with school administrators and school board members before joining others in demanding a textbook that they have not read be removed based on one out-of-context excerpt. Maybe it is a pro-terrorism and anti-Semitic textbook but I don't think one can make that judgement based on this one excerpt.

This notice of tonight's call for protest was sent to me from the Tennessee Freedom Coalition. Below is the text of the notice they forwarded:

This past Monday (April 8th, 2013) Jews, Christians, and people of conscience united around the globe to remember the six million men, women, and children who were violently murdered by the Nazi's because of their faith. That day of remembrance is called Yom HaShoah.

The Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum. This horrific event in history occurred systematically because Christians, Germans and world leaders turned a blind eye to the growing anti-Semitism in communities across Germany while Adolf Hitler, incrementally executed his evil agenda.

This coming Monday, at 6pm, you have an opportunity to stand against the growing threat of the "new" anti-Semitism in our community by attending a Williamson County School Board meeting to demand that our elected officials remove curriculum that confuses "terrorist attacks" with "political violence."

The text in question is taken from The Cultural Landscape Curriculum - An Introduction to Human Geography; under the title, "Why Has Terrorism Increased?" The author states, "If a Palestinian suicide bomber kills several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant, is that an act of terrorism or wartime retaliation against Israeli government policies and army actions?"

This type of blatant anti-Semitic propaganda and disinformation, has no place in our community and it should not be taught to our future leaders. PJTN is uniting with other organizations in middle Tennessee to launch a community-wide effort to remove any curriculum from our County/City schools that support Arab/Palestinian terrorist attacks against our Jewish brethren and we need you to be there! So please, make every effort to attend!

During a meeting last December with Franklin High School faculty, our requests to provide an alternative textbook that would provide factually accurate and balanced information was denied.

So, please plan to arrive early. Not only do we need every tax-paying citizen and their students in the County to attend, but if you live in the surrounding counties, you should attend too. This curriculum is being peddled to our children across the State and in private schools as well. A statewide effort must be launched to remove this type of biased curriculum from our elementary, junior and senior high schools, as well as our schools of higher learning.

As I stated earlier, the Holocaust did not happen in a vacuum, and in the words of Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, "Indifference to evil is evil."

The Williamson County School Board meeting convenes at 6pm tomorrow, Monday, April 15th at 1320 Main Street, Suite 202, Franklin, TN.

Remember to forward this information to your family and friends. The press will be covering this story and we need to pack the house to show that we are committed to this effort.

For more information, please contact our office at: 615-778-0202, or email me at: Please forward this email to everyone you know and ask them to take the time to attend, the future of our community, this great state and the future of the United States demands it.

God bless you!

Laurie Cardoza-Moore President & Producer

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  1. As a proud Jew and a proud supporter of Israel, I’m comfortable saying that I don’t find the cited passage in the textbook to be even the least bit offensive. There is certainly still anti-Semitism in the world, but it takes someone who is actively looking to manufacture a cause for outrage to find it in a study question that seeks to engage student thinking about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The correct answer to the question, of course, is that killing several dozen Israeli teenagers in a Jerusalem restaurant is an act of terrorism. Perhaps Ms. Cardoza-Moore’s concerns stem from the fact that Williamson County students are being asked to come up with that answer on their own, rather than just being taught what to think.

    On a related note, I'd also like to emphasize the fact that Laurie Cardoza-Moore, a run-of-the-mill anti-Muslim bigot who continues to be a national embarrassment, does not speak for Tennessee’s Jewish community in any way, shape or form. And just as a reminder of whom we're talking about exactly, see:

    Daniel Horwitz

  2. If a Muslim American kills an 8 year old child and blows the limbs off 100's of other civilians in an American public square is that an act of terrorism or a wartime response to America's policies and actions in Iraq and Afghanistan? Should Williamson County students ponder that question next year?

  3. If the Israeli army kills a Palestinian Christian and bulldozes their cemetery is that an act of national defense or terrorism? - FHS Class of 2006.