The Tour for Humanity bus, organized by The Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies, recently visited Korah Collegiate in Sault, Ontario, to educate high school students about racism in Canada’s past and present.
The presentation covered various injustices, including the Holocaust, slavery, Residential School atrocities, racism against Chinese settlers, and internment of Japanese Canadians in World War II.
Canada’s history with racism
Many students were surprised to learn about the extent of racism in Canada’s history. Some did not know about the internment of Japanese Canadians, and others were not aware of the number of non-Jewish victims who died during the Holocaust. However, students were keen to learn about these skeletons in Canada’s closet and understand how they could make a difference in fighting racism today.
Korah teacher Mary Maurice believes that the Tour for Humanity bus is an excellent way for students to learn about some of the challenges that exist in today’s society and understand Canada’s historical roots. She challenges her students to take an active role in changing society by calling out racism and making a difference.
For Maurice, educating students about racism involves teaching them to recognize it and call it out when they see it. She encourages students to watch the words they use and the jokes they make, and call out unacceptable behavior. By doing so, students can help create a more accepting and equal society.
The Tour for Humanity bus is just one example of the educational resources available to Canadian students. The Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies is one of many organizations that work to educate young people about racism and discrimination in Canada and around the world.
According to Kim Quinn, an FSWC educator, many young people lack cohesive education about the Holocaust and the atrocities committed by the Nazis. They may not know how to recognize Nazi symbols or protest against them if they see them. Furthermore, racism and discrimination are still present in Canada, and some groups, such as Asian Canadians, are facing increasing attacks.
Quinn believes that fighting racism starts with acknowledging our own biases and mistakes. By educating ourselves about racism and discrimination, we can learn to recognize it and call it out when we see it. It is up to all of us to make a difference and create a more inclusive and equal society for everyone.
The Tour for Humanity bus and other educational resources are essential for Canadian students to understand the country’s history of racism and discrimination.
By learning about past injustices and understanding how they can make a difference today, students can create a more inclusive and equal society. It is up to all of us to recognize and fight racism in all its forms.