Anti-'woke' school board candidate facing furious backlash for suggesting that all Nazis weren't bad
Two women in Nazi Germany issuing the Nazi salute (image via Wikimedia Commons).

A candidate for an Indiana school board in under fire over a Facebook comment where he seemed to suggest that not all Nazis during World War II were bad, WTHR reports.

Zionsville school board candidate Dr. Matt Keefer has criticized critical race theory and "wokeness," saying that it has no place in schools. "It is based on rewriting history and the idea of presentism. Presentism is judging people from history with the standards of today," he said on Facebook.

In another Facebook post, Keefer responded to someone who asked, "Would teaching students 'all Nazis are bad' be considered indoctrination?"

Keefer replied, "All Nazis weren't 'bad' as you specify. They did horrible things. They were in a group frenzy in both cases you site. ... Who is to say if we were both there in the same place and time, that we wouldn't have done the same thing."

The comment sparked outrage from parents, including Marina Nazarov, who is one of the few Jewish people in Zionsville.

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"It's very difficult for us every time we hear that word. It's very difficult for us to deal with because it brings a lot of painful memories for our family and generations," Nazarov said.

Another parent, Hilary Heffernan, said that for somebody "to say that Nazis were not all bad and historically was represented as one of the worst atrocities of all time, I just couldn't fathom."

Zionsville Community School Board member Michael Berg, who is running for re-election, told WTHR that "Keefer has not been shy about making sweeping generalizations about many groups of people whom he disagrees with, yet he seeks a nuanced discussion of the actions of Nazis."

"Perhaps more concerning to me is his apparent desire to co-opt the suffering of Holocaust victims in an effort to claim a similar type of victimhood for himself over disagreements with COVID-19 mitigation strategies," Berg said. "I am concerned that Dr. Keefer and candidates like him are running for school board seats with motivations that are driven by their political beliefs. The ultimate responsibility of a school board member, and my reason for running, is to ensure that all students have access to a high-quality public education."

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Zionsville school board candidate makes controversial comments