I cannot think of a more hateful symbol than the swastika. Though swastikas have been part of ancient civilizations dating back thousands of years, for Jews the swastika symbolizes the evil of Nazi Germany. Oppression, terror, murder, and genocide are bound up in this one symbol.
Thus it comes as a shock when Jewish students have been confronted by swastikas at their schools. In recent weeks there have been at least two incidents at Fremont high schools.
Jewish students and adults have contacted the school administration. To his credit, Dr. Jim Morris, Superintendent of FUSD, has responded with sincerity and concern. Wishing to address these incidents in a public forum, Dr. Morris assembled a panel to participate in a video program produced by FUSD entitled Community Conversations. I was invited to be a member of the panel.
I was more than glad to express my views on camera. But without a doubt, the star of the program was Adam Bernstein, a senior at Washington High School. I’ve known Adam for years. During the program he expressed his views thoughtfully and articulately. Adam is a model of how students can take positive steps to confront bigotry.
This 20 minute program is now available for viewing online here.