As if White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s insidious Tuesday gaffe in which he claimed Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons weren’t enough, yet another crude Holocaust reference is starting to attract attention on the internet: a high school presentation in Canada comparing abortion to the Holocaust.
Although the incident in question, which was recorded by a student, occurred last month, a Buzzfeed report published Wednesday notes that École Secondaire Notre Dame, a Catholic school in Alberta, is now being investigated.
A woman from the Red Deer and Area Pro Life group delivered the controversial presentation, screening a three-minute video called The Case Against Abortion: Personhood.
At the 1:20-minute mark of the video, it references the Auschwitz death camp and Hitler’s “scheme by which severely disabled children could be murdered.”
“Then once the war began, this killing was extended to disabled adults as well (and then to all ‘unwanted’ persons),” the video’s subtitles read.
Anti-abortion groups frequently cite advocacy for access to birth control and abortion, notably by Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, as support for eugenics and liken this to a movement against the differently abled, rather than a movement to promote women’s human rights and bodily autonomy. The video shown in the Alberta classroom takes this a step further, comparing access to reproductive rights to the Holocaust.
Alberta’s education minister Dave Eggen has since responded in no uncertain terms that such presentations will not be tolerated going forward.
“We do have excellent filters and obviously we didn’t catch something like this,” Dave Eggen told Canadian news outlet, Global News. “I think it’s a good reminder to everybody to be vigilant and to ensure this sort of hateful propaganda doesn’t infiltrate our schools.”
He additionally called the presentation’s content “completely outrageous,” and added that he “was offended” by the presentation.
“The Red Deer and Area Pro-Life group presenting in schools – I have a big problem with that too,” Eggens said. “They [the Red Deer school district] let this thing slip through. It’s not good for kids to be presented inaccurate information. It’s outrageous to the general public that someone would make a connection between abortion and the Holocaust. It doesn’t belong in our schools.”
According to Eggens, he has asked Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools to explain how, why and when the presentation was given.
You can view a student’s recording of the presentation here.
Featured image via screen grab