(originally posted 10/29/2008)
Apparently some middle school students in suburban St. Louis created ‘Hit a Jew’ day and then actually slapped some Jewish students! You can read an article about it here.
Where are these kids’ parents? I want to hit them.
It’s bad enough to hear antisemitic and racist things from adults, but it’s really tragic to hear it from kids. And to have kids act on this antisemitism in this manner, where they are not even trying to hide these horrible sentiments, is one of the saddest things I’ve heard in a while.
When my children mention seeing someone picked on, or talk about disliking another person because they are different, I take the opportunity to talk to them about treating each person with respect. I tell them that there will be a time when they are the ones who are different, and that even if they don’t have things in common with another person, that doesn’t make the other person bad or deserving of mistreatment. I also teach my children that even if they are not participating in the bullying, they are condoning it if they stay silent about it. I also tell them that I know it is hard to stand up to your friends or to stand out against the crowd, but it their duty to do so.
After reading this, I’m going to go give my kids this talk again. Just to make sure they remember it.