I am interrupting my series of blog posts on “the Zapruder film and the Gettier problem” (see my previous post, for example) to commemorate the 78th anniversary of the last day of the infamous Zoot Suit Riots, which occurred over several days in Los Angeles, California in June of 1943. I was born and grew up in L.A., yet I was never taught about the Zoot Suit Riots or the “Sleepy Lagoon Murder” in any of my history or social studies classes in school. Why not? Was it because of racism against Chicanos and Hispanics generally or just wilful ignorance? Bad intentions or benign neglect?
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Is it possible that is was glossed over out of fear? Like most union employees, public school teachers prefer to take the easy route. I can see why, because there is no incentive to want to talk about difficult eras in history. Why risk having to deal with a classroom of pissed off teenagers?
I wouldn’t be surprised if more public school teachers could skip over the Jim Crow South and the Holocaust in history class they would. Both events are far too salient to the general public to bury.
Goid points, but I remember learning about the Holocaust and the My Lai Massacre in Vietnam, so either my teachers were willfully ignorant or did not want to talk about such a terrible event closer to home.
I just wish I was taught real history when I was in school. Versus slanted and biased rubbish.