Hindsight and Holocaust remembrance

I’ve just learned that yesterday was International Holocaust Remembrance Day, but I guess it’s not too late to do some remembering today. I’m also meditating on something that was brought to my attention in a tweet by the junior US senator from New Jersey, Cory Booker:

In the current political climate in the US, there’s a lot to worry about. There are all kinds of changes pending, and many of them feel threatening to me. But as alarming as my worries seem, they are nothing compared to those that haunt the millions of refugees throughout the world.

Knowing how we came to love Anne Frank through learning her story, can we consider the possibility that those now desperately seeking help at the borders of many nations of the world have stories like Anne’s, that we should hear?

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4 thoughts on “Hindsight and Holocaust remembrance

  1. Lori, I visit your blog from time to time. You’re a very good writer and your musings are very interesting and meaningful. We’re in Korea now (I’m teaching at a U.S. army base school here) so I’m not “on the ground” in America to feel the chill in the air, but it’s clear things are getting ugly very quickly under Trump (and I sense it’s only going to get worse). If there were anything to accelerate the second coming, it seems like a Trump presidency would be it! It feels like his reality TV show has been revived, only now it’s being filmed from the White House. Everything’s surreal, including Melania Trump as the official first lady and Ivanka Trump as the de-facto first lady! I’ve heard quite a few compelling and well thought out explanations but I’m still left questioning, “How on earth did we get to this point as a country?”

    • Thanks, Clark. Your question is a great one, and one that has me shaking my head as well. I’ve just read an interesting article by Andrew Postman in The Guardian that speaks to the question. Basically, though we’ve been on the watch for a future that looked like Orwell’s 1984, the bigger threat turns out to be Huxley’s Brave New World. The author says this: “Our public discourse has become so trivialized, it’s astounding that we still cling to the word ‘debates’ for what our presidential candidates do onstage when facing each other. Really? Who can be shocked by the rise of a reality TV star, a man given to loud, inflammatory statements, many of which are spectacularly untrue but virtually all of which make for what used to be called ‘good television’?”
      Postman’s article refers to the book by his father, Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death, which appears to have seen Trump coming. From the article: “’An Orwellian world is much easier to recognize, and to oppose, than a Huxleyan,’ my father wrote. ‘Everything in our background has prepared us to know and resist a prison when the gates begin to close around us … [but] who is prepared to take arms against a sea of amusements?'”
      Certainly, the world has been a darker place at many points in history, but it feels to me like the days of “oh, I’m sure everything will be fine,” are behind us. There is much work to be done.

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