In a speech about three months ago, former Canadian prime minister Brian Mulroney suggested the federal government should not only create a Blue Ribbon Panel to examine the growth of Holocaust denial, but also "reach out to our youth to obliterate anti-Semitism."
Closer to home, it was revealed in a poll taken in early June, Quebecers were less likely to learn about the Holocaust in high school than other Canadians. The poll indicated that about 40 per cent of respondents across Canada did not learn in school that about "six-million European Jews were murdered by the Nazis during the Second World War." The figure for Quebec was more than 53 per cent.
As part of its education plan, the Quebec government is promoting the idea that students participate in extra-curricular cultural activities. Education Minister Jean-François Roberge has promised that the government would pick up the tab for two annual outings.
That said, all high-schoolers should visit the bilingual exhibition at the Montreal Holocaust Museum. I believe that would be a significant step to help combat anti-Semitism.
Chris Eustace Pierrefonds, QC