April 11, 2012 07:36 PMLOCATION
Pembroke Pines FloridaRESPONSE
I’ve had the privilege of visiting the Holocaust Memorial in Miami Beach several times since it opened. In fact, when the monument was under construction, I lived right across the street, so I witnessed its evolution. No matter how many times I visit, I am always awed by the power this memorial has and the stories it immortalizes. With a simple yet complex hand that reaches out into the sky, it tells the story of the millions of lives lost during the Holocaust. Walking through the tunnel towards the main chamber is an unforgettable experience and it makes me realize that this time in history must be studied so that future generations learn to fight and protect humanity.
Through the Holocaust we learn what corruption can accomplish. If we need a perfect example of what a tyrannical government can do, we don’t need to go further than Hitler and the Third Reich. From his beginnings as a rebel, Hitler demonstrated a total disregard for others. When he came to absolute power, he implemented his beliefs throughout Europe with the use of manipulation, coercion, and force. His “Final Solution” was implemented because power and greed guided those who put it into motion. Anyone who opposed it was imprisoned, tortured, or killed while other countries claimed ignorance of those abuses. He led a campaign through his conquered land against the Jews and other “undesirables” in a systematic way fueled by both his wicked corruption and the idleness of the rest of the world.
The detriments of corruption are relevant to the study of the Holocaust; however, studying this tragic chapter in history is necessary to avoid such terrible acts against humanity to happen again. It is important to be vigilant when crimes against humanity are happening; however, vigilance is only the first step. Taking action to both prevent and stop the ladder of prejudice to build its rungs as sturdily as it was done during the Third Reich’s reign. The people of Germany were brainwashed with a successful propaganda campaign that when Kristallnatch happened, instead of stopping the pogrom, they participated eagerly. This event was the first domino that fell to push unacceptable and unwarranted hatred to be rampart against Jews, and the rest – deportation, isolation, experimentation, extermination- fell readily. When students learn of these terrible crimes, they learn what intolerance leads to and that it has to be halted the minute it rears its despicable head.
Perhaps the strongest argument for preserving the memory of the events that happened during the Holocaust is to honor the memory of those who fought so courageously in every front – victims, denouncers, resistors, liberators, and ultimately the survivors. The Holocaust is a horrific time in history, but from the horrors we have heroic tales of the resistance and survival of many. Teaching children about how the victims stayed courageous in the face of indescribable loathing; how they remained true to their faith; how they were able to rebuild their lives from the ashes of Auschwitz, Bergen-Belse, Sobibor, Treblinka, and other camps. It is when students can connect to the faces of the Holocaust that we create a link between generations and the real value of history is in the hands of those who will keep it in their hearts forever.
The Holocaust is a time-period in history that stands as an example of the atrocities humans can inflict on each other when intolerance and indifference take hold of people’s souls. Remembering what happened is essential to avoiding such carnage from ever happening again. When the last survivor is gone, we will still remember.
April 11, 2012 11:39 AMLOCATION
Pembroke Pines, FLRESPONSE
Education and remembrance is key to avoiding anything like this in the future. The world's response to situations like this seen in other regions of the world has significantly changed. We, as a human race, have become much more proactive and willing to step in when we see a grave injustice such as this.
April 09, 2012 04:49 PMLOCATION
We cannot help the many, many victims who suffered so much for no reason, but keeping the past alive can only help those in the future who might not otherwise have a voice to help them.
April 07, 2012 09:07 PMLOCATION
When I was a child I was fascinated by all the event of WWII and in particular of the Holocaust and how all those people that I saw in documentaries that were no more than walking skeletons had survived.
When I grew up and went to the university and had to take a class on it, I cried and had nightmares for many months especially because I had already my children I thought what would I do if something like should happen to us.
I think it is important for all of us regardless our ethnicity, color, religion, or place of origin to study and remember the Holocaust in order to avoid making the same mistakes. We need to see the indicators early on and see that we all have to take part in working a solution to avoid anything like that from happening again.
April 06, 2012 07:23 PMLOCATION
Coral Springs, FLRESPONSE
I have found that most people have short memories when it comes to major historical events that do not directly impact them. The number of people directly impacted by the Holocaust is rapidly dwindling and will soon be zero. If this horrific event is not studied, it will be relegated to a footnote in history. If the Holocaust serves no other purpose, it stands as an testament of the depths to which mankind can sink when hatred is allowed to fester unchecked. It is true that prejudice has led to genocide in Rwanda and Darfur but the world did not stand idly by this time. There was an outcry and intolerance that can only be attributed to the compassion and humanity taught through study of the Holocaust.
January 26, 2012 02:32 PMLOCATION
In school we have to write a report on anything we choose in history! I chose the holocaust! allot of people thought I was sick to pick that but, I feel something in my heart that really makes me wanna learn more about this! I feel so bad for these people and wouldn't want anything like this to happen again!
July 05, 2011 02:28 PMLOCATION
It is so important to remember the Holocaust because the do not say very little or nothing at all in our schools. We have to remember so we do not forget what happened to other human beings at the hands of others. We have to remember so we do not make the same mistake again in time. Start loving your neighbor and do not worry their race, or where they came from they are humans just like you.I would like to say ask your grand parents questions about the war they may have alot to say you could learn from.
April 16, 2011 03:16 PMLOCATION
It is important that we study the Holocaust and encourage our students to study because we are human. Our humanity is defined as that part of us which is compassionate and connected to others. We can not allow for the atrocities of the past to be repeated or ignored or forgotten.
April 15, 2011 12:37 PMLOCATION
I remember so that I give life to all of those who are no longer able to speak up for themselves. I know that I must become the next generation surivior and lead others to stand up to the perpetrators. I want the victims of the world to know that I am not a bystander. They are not alone, not now or ever as long as I am on this earth. Thank the lord for giving us so many brave individuals to share their experiences with the next generation.
David A. WoodDATE
April 10, 2011 06:45 PMLOCATION
Why is it important to study the Holocaust?
It is important to study the Holocaust because man matters and because, as Joseph Heller says, “Man is matter.” Each individual has the right to live, to live as long as possible, to live free and without fear, to live a life that may (or may not) be his only life to live. Each man matters; his life is important.
What I mean by this is simple; each of us is an amazing creature, a thinking, pondering, wondering, dreaming, self-aware being. We have no way of knowing for sure, but it seems to be true that, as far as the creatures of the earth go, we are one of a kind. We can think about our lives, plan our lives (and, then, of course be surprised by fate), worry about our lives, regret our lives, and mourn or celebrate our lives as they rush past us.
The vast majority of us don’t have to worry about predators of another species (except maybe bacteria and viruses – but, don’t worry, we’re learning to battle these, too); with the exception of accidents, random chance, and natural death, we really only have to worry about one great threat: each other. This is why studying the Holocaust matters, so that we can understand the threat we pose to each other when we forget that each of us is in possession of a uniquely human intelligence and is travelling on a uniquely human journey. We each matter.
And, of course, we are each made of matter. The debate about the existence of spirit is best left for others who are blessed with far more certainty and faith than I have; it is an important discussion, maybe the most important one, but the truth is there is no way to know what the truth is. So, given that, one thing is true: man is mortal. He dies; he ends; he ceases.
The intentional killing of any one man by another is worse than any twist of fate, worse than any act of a hungry predator or mindless parasite. It is done with knowledge, with thought, and, in most cases, with the worst kind of disregard for the worth of each human life. The Holocaust is one of the worst (and thus, most effective) examples of the willful destruction that man visits on man. It is horrific, tragic, disgusting. It represents the worst that any one man can do to another.
At the same time, of course, the moments of bravery, of courage, of hope that pervade an in depth study of this simultaneously human and very inhuman event exemplify the best of what man can be. Studying the Holocaust is important because it is studying ourselves.