Holocaust Remembrance Day

Today is Yom Hashoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day. I was reminded of this as I drove to work this morning and heard this broadcast on NPR. It is the account of Rudy Katz as told by his son Jeffrey Katz. It is a concise and moving account of how the Holocaust impacted one family.

I have heard many educators state that too much time is spent teaching the Holocaust at the expense of other time periods and occurrences in history. I am not sure if this is true. I certainly think that there are other important topics to study, but I definitely believe that time should be spent on learning about the Holocaust. Time needs to be spent not just learning about the event but about the lives it affected (and continues to affect), about the ordinary people who committed atrocities, about the danger of following blindly, about the people who risked their lives to save strangers. It was an unconscionable event in history, but one from which humanity can learn.

I have visited many of the concentration camps – Auschwitz, Majdanek and Treblinka. The memories and power that continues to exude from these remains is powerful and life changing. The trip reinforced the importance to me of the power one leader can have to either help or hinder humanity. It also made me more aware of other instances of genocide which have occurred (and are occurring) in history.

Please take a moment today to remember those who perished during the Holocaust and those who continue to lose their lives to hatred and intolerance.

You may also want to look at some of the following resources:

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Yad Vashem
The Ghetto Fighters’ Museum
Voices on Genocide Prevention

Explore posts in the same categories: Holocaust, NPR

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