Saturday, March 05, 2005

So That We Never Forget

This from Daily Kos is too touching for words. I promised, in a comment, to post link to it. So here it is.

Plus my reply, which was on the Daily Kos comment thread that went with the above linked post:

"This story was so incredibly touching. Thank you for sharing it with us. And if I may, I would like also like to share a memory

My father came to America from Poland as a young boy of twelve. When he grew up, he was drafted into the U.S. Army during World War II and returned, as a GI, to Europe. His unit was one of the first American troops to march into one of the concentration camps. It wasn't Auschwitz or Dachau or any of the larger, more notorious camps. But it was still bad enough to haunt him even to this day and he's 92 years old.

He was so conflicted. On the one hand, he was the American hero who marched in to liberate these concentration camp victims. But on the other hand, he like them was a Jew. And there but for fortune, it could have been him on the other side as the victim.

He always taught me that it wasn't the German people who killed the Jews and so many others. It was hatred. It was Nazism, it was ideology.

Once when I was sixteen and we were traveling down South, my father pulled our car over to the side of the road on I-95 in North Carolina. There was a sign in a field that pictured a hooded Klansmen on a horse that was rearing up on its hind legs. The sign proclaimed, "You are in Klan Country now."

My father pointed at that sign and said, "that is what killed the Jews, the gypsies, the liberals in Europe and the now the blacks in America. That is your true enemy. Hatred, wherever it is and whoever preaches it."

That's why I still fight it whenever I can. And why, when I'm finished here, I'm posting a link to this from my own blog."
And so, I have posted that link. It's important. Wherever there is hatred, we need to name it, challenge it, fight it.

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