EVERETT, Wash. – A recent video uploaded to YouTube appears to show a Washington State high school English teacher using her position to indoctrinate students into her line of political thought.
The video, uploaded by Akakios Yiannapoulos Dec. 10, was reportedly recorded during an English lesson for juniors in Snohomish County the day prior. The nearly 8-minutes of footage appears to have been shot by a student near the front of the classroom, where a projector screen displays a news broadcast that criticizes presidential hopeful Donald Trump’s recent remarks about Muslims and immigration.
“Ok, shhhhh. Hey guys, can you get in a state so you can watch this? We’re watching this, don’t talk,” the teacher tells students as she ques up the video. “We will discuss this briefly, then you are going to be reading this thing called ‘The Lessons of Salem,’ because these are lessons we learned as a country, ok.”
“We return to our lead story … Donald Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering this country,” the video begins. “In the heat of the political moment, some perspective. History is replete with examples of when fear and intolerance take hold and an entire category of people is marginalized.”
Students laughed loudly when Trump’s image appears on the screen, but the teacher quickly quells the noise.
“Donald Trump’s promise to ban all Muslims from coming to America is more, much more than a shouted campaign provocation,” Tom Brokaw announces in the video – a lead in to Tuesday’s segment of NBC Nightly News that compared his rhetoric to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, the Holocaust, and McCarthyism.
“Trump’s statement, even in a season of extremes, is a dangerous proposal that overrides history, law, and the foundation of America itself,” Brokaw said. “In my lifetime alone, we have witnessed the consequences of paranoia overriding reason.
“During World War II, law abiding Japanese American citizens were herded into remote internment camps, losing their jobs, businesses and social standing while an all Japanese division fought heroically in Europe,” the video continued. “At the same time, in Germany, a regime declared war on its own citizens if they were Jewish, and Germany paid the ultimate price – defeat and history’s condemnation.”
The broadcast then turns to Sen. Joe McCarthy’s “anti-communist witch hunt” that “made ever more outrageous claims, damaging reputations.”
It highlights a Muslim that joined the military after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and died in combat.
“Mr. Trump cannot exclude him from America, he has a permanent home here in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery,” Brokaw said before the teacher pauses the video.
“Sen. Joseph McCarthy, he is what you would call a demagogue, and they are calling Trump a demagogue,” the teacher explained to students. “A demagogue is a person who rises to power because he becomes very popular among citizens because he constantly complements them and tells them how great they are while at the same time his agenda is completely backward from what a democracy should look like.
“He was the one who led the red hunt, looking for communists,” she continued. “The whole country was freaking out about communists, similarly to how our country is freaking out about anybody who has anything to do with Islamic religion, right? Because we’re seeing extremists, jihadists, ISIS, who are just going around killing people and it even happened in our country last week.”
“Like Tom Brokaw said, there are a billion and a half Muslims in the world, they’re not killers, ok? It is an extremist group that are the killers,” the teacher droned on.
“When we were threatening to kick all of the communists out of the country in 1950, people were being accused of being a communist, even though they weren’t,” she said. “It was called the hunt for reds, the red scare.”
A student then asked a question, and the teacher provides an inaccurate response.
“Being a Muslim, though, that’s a race. Communism, that’s a political (inaudible),” the student said.
“Correct, correct,” the teacher said. “The parallels here, they are either looking at religious affiliation, political beliefs …, or race. They are kind of all thrown together.
“Jews are a race, but it’s also a religion – Judaism, right? Japanese, it’s a race, but they were also the ones we were at war with during World War II,” she said. “So it’s not just religion, it’s not just political affiliation, it’s not just race.
“It’s showing complete intolerance towards a group of people,” she said before transitioning to how the current situation is similar to the “1692 witch hunts.”
“The things that Tom Brokaw just showed you on NBC News, that was on last night, and I was like ‘Oh, my God, I have to show this to you guys,” she said. “Those are called modern day witch hunts – that’s the spin given to this type of activity, when you are rounding up people you think that’s who they are, but they’re not. It’s just that they happen to be in that group where there are some of these people you want to round up.”