Distribution of hate music puts schools, ADL on alert

Neo-Nazi group says it has passed out CDs in the area

Houston-area teachers and administrators are being warned to watch for music CDs that encourage hate and violence.

The Anti-Defamation League is particularly concerned about the ongoing distribution of more than 100,000 compact discs by a Minnesota-based record company with apparent roots in neo-Nazism.

“We have to fight extremism, which then leads to terrorism,” said regional ADL director Martin Cominsky at a conference last week that urged schools to promote tolerance.

The Anti-Defamation League’s program “No Place for Hate” comes as Panzerfaust Records announced that it had already distributed 20,000 CDs of hate music to students across the country and plans to distribute 100,000 more.

Byron Calvert, manager of Panzerfaust record company in Minnesota, confirmed “Project Schoolyard USA” has passed out its music to Houston schools. Among the songs on the CD are Hate Train Rolling and Under the Hammer.

Cominksy urged teachers and administrators to watch for prejudice in other forms, including e-mail and bullying.

But tolerance isn’t always an easy message to convey. Dulles High School Principal Lynn Marshall recalled when he allowed students to form the Gay/Straight Alliance.

“Some of the teachers walked out of a staff development when the GSA students wanted to give a presentation,” Marshall said.

One goal of the ADL program is to offer teachers and administrators suggestions on how to get students to meet others outside their background.

Other schools have taken such steps. Meadows Elementary Principal Irma Cabos, of the Fort Bend Independent School District, said they plan a “Mix it Up” lunch day that helps break up cafeteria cliques.

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