To know that there are people out there that romanticize the Holocaust, is appalling to me. The Holocaust occurred approximately eighty-five years ago, it was a time that individuals and governments decided to promote hatred and discrimination that lead to a genocide. The history of the Holocaust is told through teachers in schools, movies, and books. Depending on the feeling that those people have of the Holocaust, it can lead to a romanticize of the Holocaust. An example of this could be a movie that is portrayed during the time of the Holocaust that tells the story of two Jewish people that met and fell in love and ended up getting separated due to the Holocaust, and at the end of the holocaust it shows the two were reunited and somehow the events they suffered in the Holocaust made them have a better relationship. The story that I just mentioned gives people an example of how people put a light on the Holocaust. The fact of the matter is that innocent people died in an attempt of religious freedom, and no matter what “positive” things came out of the Holocaust, if there is any, it does not amount the to the number of lives lost, families separated, and torture that was experienced.
Although it seems as if the whole German society supported the events of the Holocaust, there were people out there that did not, such as the Righteous Gentiles. Most of those people decided to stay quiet but there are a few that decided to take matters into their own hands and fight back. These people were willing to risk their own lives in order to save others. Righteous Gentiles and other non-Jewish people that fought back are inspirational, however It can be harmful to the memory of the Holocaust and genocide because people want to glorify those that helped, but are overlooking the ones that actually suffered due to their religion. The photo below is a newspaper article that explains how a social worker saved the lives of 2,500 Jewish children during the Holocaust.
We often analyze situations that occur, and think, if that happened to me this is what I would do, however that is a thought-out process and situations, like the holocaust are different in some ways. If I were a bystander while the holocaust was occurring I honestly do not know what I would do, part of me thinks that I would do whatever I could to stop the Nazis, but fighting for what I believe in would mean risking my life, and if I had a family, possibly theirs as well. Although many people say that they would resist genocide, they still happen. Those that are willing to fightback are usually outnumbered, and unprepared for what they are fighting against. Still, many other people do not believe in fighting a fight that does not affect them, and they are not willing to risk what will happen to them if they do fight back. Unfortunate events in America happen quite often then we think, such as the Boston marathon bombing that occurred in April of 2013, and the Las Vegas massacre that took place on October of 2017. At the time of both events, people were caught off guard so the only way to fight back at the time was police force and the military. After the events, people nationwide were doing what they could to support those that were effected, such as donating to cover costs of medical bills and more. Bad things happen all over the world, but it is up to those that can help to do their part as a member of society.
Lauren McDonald is a student in JST 300 / WMST 495 / WMST 595, Holocaust and Genocide Studies