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NJ middle school teacher’s 9/11 lesson urges sympathy for ‘Osama’

Parents in Vernon, New Jersey are outraged over a local middle school teacher’s lesson on September 11, which skipped over the world’s worst terrorist attack and instead focused on the plight of an imaginary Muslim boy named Osama.

Ed O’Rourke, a former U.S. Marine, and his wife, Jodi, told the New Jersey Herald that their daughter’s sixth grade teacher at Glen Meadow Middle School assigned a story titled “My Name is Osama” for students to read on September 11, which his daughter described over dinner.

The Herald reports:

The story … tells a made-up account of an Iraqi immigrant boy named Osama who faces taunts of “terrorist” in school by several students who tell him his mother, who wears a hijab, has “a bag on her head.” After pushing back against his tormenters, the boy is suspended from school for fighting.

The story included no mention of the ideology behind those who carried out the 9/11 attacks, which O’Rourke said should have been a part of the class discussion as well.

“I thought it was a joke at first,” Ed O’Rourke said. “I couldn’t believe it.”

“It would be like, on a day about the Holocaust, doing a made-up lesson about a boy named Adolf being bullied by Jewish kids and saying we shouldn’t blame all Germans – or don’t pick on the poor kid named Adolf on the Jewish holidays,” he said. “It’s grotesque.”

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