In June 2019, Texas legislators passed Senate Bill 1828, which requires the inclusion of the Holocaust in Texas public school curriculum.
A careful examination reveals that the Texas Department of Education has excluded the presence and participation of Afro Americans in the Jewish Holocaust history.
Additions to the Jewish Holocaust curriculum should include requiring curriculum materials and speakers that are associated with the Wiener Holocaust Library. The library was started by Dr. Alfred Wiener which host the world’s largest British collection of original Nazi era and Holocaust materials. One of the most promising library materials is a news article titled “The Persecution of Black People in the Nazi Camp System”. Other curriculum materials that would provide the experience of African Americans involved in the Jewish Holocaust include:
- Black Germany: The Making and Unmaking of a Disapora Community 1884-1960
- Hitler’s Black Victims: The Historical Experiences of Afro-Germans, European Blacks, Africans, and African Americans in the Nazi-Era
- Other Germans: Black Germans and the Politics of Race, Gender, and Memory in the Third Reich
- Black German: An Afro-German Life in the Twentieth Century
Utilizing curriculum materials regarding African Americans and the Jewish Holocaust is a perfect segway to incorporating the holocaust experiences of African Americans. One such resource is the Americas Black Holocaust Museum.
The Americas Black Holocaust Museum was founded in 1988 by Dr. James Cameron. The museum has seven History Galleries and a Special Exhibits Gallery. The History Galleries detail in chronological order life in Africa before captivity to African American life today. The Special Exhibits Gallery includes a memorial to victims of lynching, the freedom Lovers Roll Call Wall, an art exhibit as well as featured exhibits.
Additionally, incorporating the holocaust experiences of African Americans into Jewish Holocaust experiences will help Texas schools to meet the requirements of Texas law (HB 3979). According to The Texas law (HB 3979) “teachers who choose to discuss current events or widely debated and currently controversial issues of public policy or social affairs shall, to the best of their ability, strive to explore such issues from diverse and contending perspectives without giving deference to any one perspective.
Join me in showing the Texas Department of Education the need to transform their Jewish Holocaust curriculum. Please sign the petition today and encourage your friends to do the same.