Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Anti-Semite at the age of 3??

After our interaction with Mr. Schulz last week, I really wanted to examine how early can hatred really start in people? Well, apparently, very. In this interview a 3 year old Saudi girl, talks about why she hates the Jews who she refers to as "pigs and apes." At the age of three, I don't think I even knew the difference between Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus and so on. I knew that there was someone we prayed to who I called "God." I knew that God was supposed to protect us from evil, but beyond that I was completely unaware of much else.

Relating this to the Holocaust, can we truly say that that was a tragedy of the past and that it will never happen again? Can we really claim that Hitler was the only person who was charismatic enough to indoctrinate the young Germans to hate? Can we propose that today people are much more rational about what they teach their children? If we do believe that the events such as the Holocaust can never take place again, then what is to be said of a 3 year old Muslim girl who has been taught to hate the Jews?


Jay C. said...

No child is born a bigot. Hate is learned, and there is no doubt it can be unlearned. Leading experts on child development argue that the problem begins as early as preschool, where children have already learned stereotypes or acquired negative attitudes toward "others:" The process of countering those negatives with positives begins at an early age. This is the whole idea behind integration in the public school systems. It seems that the more we know about different races and cultures the more likely we are to accept. If we ever intend to experience a world that is void of bigotry and hatred we need to practice our own world integration. Make it a point to become friends with Muslims, Jews, African Americans, Asians, Latinos, Gays and the list goes on and on.
I’m not sure exactly where hate comes from but I do know how to destroy it and that is through familiarity of what we think we hate.

jimbo said...

I agree completly with jay c, no child comes out of the womb filled wiht hatred and just looking for somone to spew it on. Children learn from parents and their soroundings. As a young child you dont know anything but what is said to and around you. If hitler could have been in every childs nursery he would have had even more control over the german people. Not everyone can understand all people and accept them for who they are, but if we as a comunity of the world can understand people and teach our children to understand people then this atrocity may be avoided

Elle said...

So I have a few problems with this article, and it seems a little suspect in my mind.

First, the reporter, whose job is to be objective seems to be encouraging the behavior in the little girl. She says, "Allah willing, may our God give us the strength to educate our children the same way, so that the next generation will turn out to be true Muslims who understand that they are Muslims and know who their enemies are." Doesn't this seem that she is encouraging this behavior?
The girl's answers are vague and often it seems as if the reporter is prompting her responses. An example of this is when the reporter asks her why she hates Jews. The girls doesn't really know, and the reporter prompts her to say "apes and pigs." This can also be seen in the story about the Jewish woman. The little girl says that the Jewish woman says that Allah will protect her. But one of the fundamental differences between Judaism and Islam is the god. Jews do not pray to Allah!
In addressing these concerns, I think that the girl is too young to be fully indoctrinated. It is still scary how much she can remember and retain. She obviously does not know that meaning of the words she is saying because she gets things a little mixed up. Regardless, this girl is well on her way to learning this hate and this is alarming.
In regards to the reporter, I think that expressing her views in her report is appalling. It is people like her who help spread hatred. By advocating this type of teaching, this woman is abusing the authority she has as a reporter. It is probably that many who listen to her will take her sentiments to heart. It is not the girl we should be concerned with in this situation, but rather the reporter and the way she is allowed to promote hate.

Malika said...

I am glad that Elle picked up on what she did from the article. Personally when I came across the link and read through it, I was rather shocked myself at the attitude of the reporter. I also thought that she was almost egging the girl on to say what she was.

However, whether one thinks the article is suspect or not, the fact remains that the 3 year old could be led on to say what she did. For me, this is a concern, not only because it involves manipulating the vulnerability of a child, but also because it could lead her to believe these things in the future- perhaps even form a foundation for her hatred. After all, what do we think of notions of hatred that are ingrained in children at such a young age? Could they concievably harbor a place for themselves as adults? Does hatred taught at a young age survive till adulthood?