Florida high school principal accused of denying the holocaust
A Florida high school principal has come under fire after saying he could not say the event was “factual” or “historical.”
William Latson wrote in emails from 2018 said he wasn’t in the position as a school district employee to determine if the Holocaust was factual or historical, according to Palm Beach Post.
“I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee,” William Latson wrote in emails from 2018 published by the Palm Beach Post on Friday.
Latson’s comments came after a mother of pupil enquired how the Holocaust was taught at the school.
Latson, who is the principal at Spanish River High School, said although the school included education of the Holocaust, its lessons were “not forced upon individuals as we all have the same rights but not all the same belief.”
“The Holocaust is a factual, historical event,” the mother wrote back in an email.
“It is not a right or a belief.”
“Not everyone believes the Holocaust happened.”
The mother embarked on a year-long effort to address what she said was a failure by the school to tell the complete truth of the Holocaust.
The mother sais she did not believe Latson was a Holocaust denier, but afraid of confronting parents who were.
“I regret that the verbiage that I used when responding to an email message from a parent, one year ago, did not accurately reflect my professional and personal commitment to educating all students about the atrocities of the Holocaust,” Latson said in an apology.
“It is critical that, as a society, we hold dear the memory of the victims and hold fast to our commitment to counter anti-Semitism.”
The Holocaust, also known as the Shoah, was the World War II genocide of the European Jews. Between 1941 and 1945, across German-occupied Europe, Nazi Germany and its collaborators systematically murdered some six million Jews, around two-thirds of Europe’s Jewish population.
The murders were carried out in pogroms and mass shootings; by a policy of extermination through labor in concentration camps; and in gas chambers and gas vans in German extermination camps, chiefly Auschwitz, Bełżec, Chełmno, Majdanek, Sobibór, and Treblinka in occupied Poland.