Millennial and Gen Z New Yorkers show profound lack of Holocaust knowledge

by Peter Heck · Sep 17th, 2020 8:39 am

Last Updated Sep 19th, 2020 at 2:26 am

The first 50-state survey on the Holocaust knowledge of American millennials and Generation Z has revealed that 60% of those surveyed in New York alone were unaware that 6 million Jews were victims of Adolf Hitler's genocide. Additionally, almost 20% believed that Jews caused the genocide.

The survey, which was commissioned by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, collected answers from 1,000 random nationwide interviews in addition to 200 interviews per state, all among adults ages 18 to 39.

Some of the other findings from New York, the state with the highest Jewish population in the country by far, included:

  • 58% of New York respondents could not name one of the more than 40,000 prison camps of WWII
  • 34% of New York respondents believe the Holocaust is a myth, or that if it occurred it has been greatly exaggerated
  • 28% of New York respondents believe neo-Nazi views are acceptable
  • 62% of New York respondents have never visited a Holocaust museum

Gideon Taylor, the president of the conference, found the results "both shocking and saddening."

"We need to understand why we aren't doing better in educating a younger generation about the Holocaust and the lessons of the past," Taylor said. "This needs to serve as a wake-up call to us all and as a road map of where government officials need to act."


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