Germany: Hesse’s Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs warns teachers that using caricatures of Mohammed in lessons could be dangerous
Hesse’s Ministry of Education advises teachers that the use of Mohammed cartoons in class could be dangerous – a highly controversial move. Some teachers think: After the murder of Samuel Paty, such depictions should be discussed all the more.
Hesse’s Ministry of Education and Cultural Affairs wrote to the 1800 school headmasters in the state that there were disturbing “indications/suggestions in connection with the discussion of the murder of the French teacher Samuel Paty”.
Referring to a suggestion by the State Office of Criminal Investigation (LKA), it says: “Showing the Mohammed cartoons or any pictorial representation of the Prophet Mohammed can be interpreted as behaviour critical of Islam, which can have an emotionalising and, under certain circumstances, mobilising as well as radicalising effect on the target group, including pupils.”
The Hessian warning is the only one of its kind in Germany so far. Although the “hints/suggestions” are cautiously worded, the message is clear, according to migration researcher Ruud Koopmans of the Science Centre Berlin: “No teacher will dare to show the cartoons after reading the letter.”
(Thanks to Fred Alan Medford)