Fifty percent of Jewish Israeli high-schoolers believe that Arab Israelis should not be granted the same rights as their Jewish counterparts, according to a new Ma’agar Mohot poll of 536 15-to-18-year-olds.
Furthermore, Arabs should be prevented from running for Knesset, 56 percent of the Jewish children said.
Fifty percent of the Jewish youngsters who defined themselves as religious said the “Death to Arabs” slogan was legitimate.
Moreover, 70% of Arab Israeli youngsters polled defined themselves as “Palestinian patriots,” and 20% don’t feel a part of the country.
Minister for Minorities Affairs Avishai Braverman (Labor) called the survey results “very grave.”
“I believe that it’s the result of ignorance and a campaign of incitement that has been with us a long time,” he said, calling for “meaningful” educational activities to allow the ethnic communities in Israel to better understand one another. “We came here to set up a Jewish state, but it’s also a state for all its citizens.”
Yuval Lipkin, head of the Citizens’ Empowerment Center in Israel, said that while the survey responses were exceedingly worrying, there was still some cause for optimism.
“The problem is getting worse. Racism is severe,” Lipkin said. “But the nice thing is that these are youths who can still be molded and among whom gaps can be bridged, which cannot be said of adults.”
MKs and educators were visiting Tel Aviv University on Thursday to begin trying to find a way change the mindset of young Israelis.