Level: Grades 8-10
Duration: 2-3 hours
Author: Matthew Johnson, Director of Education, MediaSmarts
In this lesson, students learn about the difference between legitimate debate on a political issue and arguments that are based on hate. Through a science-fiction scenario they see how a controversial issue can be discussed rationally, and then learn how purveyors of "reasonable racism" use the trappings of legitimate debate to conceal their true message. Finally, students read newspaper editorials and letters to the editor to see whether a currently controversial debate is characterized by legitimate debate or by ideologies of hate.
This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) are available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.