Holacaust Museum

Apr 23rd, 2005, 12:45 PM
  #1  
Jim
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Holacaust Museum

Just returned from a D.C. vacation. We visited The Holacaust museum. It was sad and depressing. My question is why it is on The Mall in our Capitol when the Holocaust happened in Europe to Europeans?
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:03 PM
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Hello Jim, although I have never visited the Holacaust Museum I always assumed it is sad and depressing. The history of the Holacacaust is more then sad and depressing. It goes beyond what any normal persons mind could ever imagine IMO.

I am not speaking as an expert but I always assumed that we have this museum
here in the US so that hopefully we will never forget this terrible happening.

My 8th grade grandson recently had a lady who had been a holacaust victim come to his school to talk to the children. I know some people do not think this is appropriate but personally our family does.

I am sure some other poster can give you a better explination of this museum then I did.
LoveItaly is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:10 PM
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The United States Holocaust Museum was mandated by Congress to educate Americans about the history of the Holocaust and to commemorate its victims ..
LoveItaly is right, it is much more than just sad and depressing.
Why did you go? Are you interested in the Holocaust?
Perhaps you might like to do a bit of reading up on the Holocaust and maybe you could find some answers.
Scarlett is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:20 PM
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Much to the surprise of many folks, the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans is designated by Congress as "America's World War II museum." Sometimes, cities far from the action have some cultural or historical significance that we may not know about or perhaps they were just the first ones to put up the money for it. In any case, I'm very glad the U.S. has the Holocaust Museum in D.C. I think it's a fantastic museum. If it wasn't "sad and depressing" then it wouldn't be doing its job, now would it?
JohnNewOrleans is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:21 PM
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Jim, I'm surprised you would ask. Every American should not only be educated about what happened to thesem(millions of) victims, but also be made to remember, so that this kind of evil never, ever, ever is allowed to happen again.
breathe is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:32 PM
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My question is why it is on The Mall in our Capitol when the Holocaust happened in Europe to Europeans?


Well, Jim, I think a bit more globally than that statement. It happened to everyone. Eugenics was supported by Theodore Roosevelt, Churchill and Oliver Wendell Holmes. Research into eugenics was funded by the Carnegie Foundation. Eugenics promotes the idea that the best humans weren't breeding as quickly as the inferior humans. The Germans just took the theory and ran with it.

Maybe the Mall isn't a bad place for this after all. Where SHOULD it go? If one is to approach the Mall with reverence and a respect for history, then the museum is in the right spot.

Gee, I suppose if I look really hard I can find something about eugenics supporters in tonight's paper.

Just to be clear: The Holocaust was about the Nazi's breeding the Aryan race. Blue eyed blondes. Jews did not fit the profile. Neither did gays, Poles, Russians, Communists, Socialists, or the handicapped. Don't forget religious or political dissidents.

Speaking for myself, I fit into at least one of those categories--and I'm of German descent with blue eyes.

So endeth my sermon. Geesh.
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 01:58 PM
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" They came for the Jews and I did not speak up because I wasn't Jewish".... It happened to all of us and continues to happen in various forms.
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 02:03 PM
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The United States was involved in liberating the camps. In addition, many of the survivors who were displaced persons after the war are now United States citizens.

enjoylife is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 03:02 PM
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May I make a comment (I have raised my hand).

Reading through these post the thought struck me that maybe Jim did not know what to expect and was consequently quite surprised and then of course depressed.

I have no idea what age Jim is but I wouldn't be surpised if he is rather young. If he did not know what to expect perhaps the blame could be put at the feet of our school system.

When I was in school we never had one hour of discussion regarding anything regarding WWII. I was just fortunate that I lived in a home that was filled with books, was taken to the library every week and current events and history was discussed at the dinner table. Plus had lots of relatives that fought in WWII (plus all the other wars we have been involved in) so naturally there was a lot of discussions.

I have to say that evidently my 8th grade grandson had no awareness of the Holocaust. Why? I suppose no one thought he was old enough to hear the barbaric details. But the school evidently felt that the students were at the age to learn about mans inhumanity to man and so brought in this lovely older lady who shared her experiences with the students. And she evidently did not whitewash anything. So now my grandson has had lots of questions, plus comments, regarding this terrible time in the worlds history.

I, as a young girl, saw the newsreels before the Saturday afternoon movies at our local moviehouse. I still to this day remember sitting there horrified with the visual pictures of the skeletons, the survivors who were skin and bone, the whole dreadful scenes.

To this day I cannot get the images out of my mind. Am I sorry I saw this at a young age. Not at all. I would be sorrier if I had been sheltered from the truth.

I have also been priviledged to have personally know survivors. How anyone could live what these dear people lived through goes past my comprehension.

Jim, I am glad you posted your question here. Perhaps this will help you understand some of the history of the world. And I can understand your sadness and depression, especially if you did not know in advance what to expect. Actually I would imagine you were horrified.

Unfortunatly I am not sure our world has learned very much from past events.

Take good care, and if you are interested learning more about the events that brought on WWII your local library could help you find some good books.
LoveItaly is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 03:54 PM
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LoveItaly - I, too, did not receive any education about WWII and the Holocaust in school. I went to college in Phila. and learned about the Holocaust when friends and I went to see Sophie's Choice. I was stunned that I did know more about this. One of my friends was Jewish and she was equally surprised. She grew up on Long Island, where there is a much larger Jewish population than where I grew up. (I think the Jewish population where I grew up was about 1%). Apparently my school thought the only worthwhile historical US events were the Revolutionary War and the Civil War b/c that's all we ever studied.

To make this more travel related, once we started visiting the western US, I started reading a lot about western US history. Boy, there were a lot of things we didn't learn about that, either. Like how the Native American Indians were REALLY treated.

I get depressed sometimes, especially with recent global occurances. It does not seem like mankind learns that much from past evil and past mistakes.
karens is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 04:06 PM
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Gee, Jim, I guess you think they should get rid of all the Christian churches in Washington D.C., and everywhere else for that matter, right?
After all Jesus Christ never lived in the US! Why do they have churches here?
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 04:13 PM
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I too did not know much about the holocaust from school. I grew up in a military family though so learned bits and pieces along the way. A couple years ago we took our children to France, and part of that trip was spent in Caen at the Peace Memorial and at Omaha Beach and American Cemetary. The kids were young, but very interested in what they saw. They still remember a lot from that visit. Both kids have commented to us that they are glad we included this in our travels. I had no doubt that visiting places such as these would be quite educational.
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 04:19 PM
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Let's give Jim a break, please. LoveItaly, I was quite impressed with your post - truly.
seetheworld is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 04:19 PM
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LoveItaly,

Unfortunately I don't believe Jim is young at all. Here's a recent post of his on another unrealated thead.

Author: Jim
Date: 02/25/2005, 09:54 am

"I remember seeing tar balls on the beaches off L.A. in the 1940s. It was no big deal and the beaches were the most beeautiful I have ever seen."
ipod_robbie is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 04:50 PM
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I think the museum should be a mandatory experience for all world leaders, through the United Nations, then maybe there will be less wars.

I had a different experience when visiting the museum, after my visit I felt a wave of hope that this will never again happen and I guess that was a childs hope because, it is happening all over again in parts of Africa.

I think part of the reason the museum is in the US, (and there is also a Holocaust Museum here in NYC, the Jewish Heritage Museum) is because so many Americans lost family members in the Holocaust.

I was with 30 friends when we toured the museum and we all had different experiences viewing parts of the exhibits, the most moving to me were the empy shoes, thousands of shoes, of men, women and children.

I grew up in the 50's and we never learned anything about the Holocaust and I firmly believe we should have been taught all parts of WWII. My Dad and Mother were active in Civil Defense and Dad was an Army Instructor in explosives. (He also played a big part in the Cuban Missle Crisis, just a bit of family history here).

If we don't learn how things can happen, how are we to stop them from happening again.
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 06:01 PM
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Hello everyone, a thought just occurred to me.

If any of you are in SF and are interested in this did you know there is a Holocaust Memorial in Lincoln Park in SF. It is called the George Segal Holocaust Memorial. I think it was opened sometime in the early 1980's.

I haven't been there in years but I was close to tears the first time I visited it.
LoveItaly is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 06:43 PM
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Boston has a very impressive Holocaust memorial near Fanuel Hall and the Freedom Trail. Somehow, seeing it against all that history made it even more meaningful - seeing the best and the worst of humanity in the same day.

I think all the memorials and museums in the US are very appropriate. This was a global tragedy. And as pointed out in a previous post, many survivors eventually came to the US.
buttercup is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 08:58 PM
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The Holocaust Museum is in the capital of our country, not in the Capitol building.

From the ushm Mission Statement:
<The Museumís primary mission is to advance and disseminate knowledge about this unprecedented tragedy; to preserve the memory of those who suffered; and to encourage its visitors to reflect upon the moral and spiritual questions raised by the events of the Holocaust as well as their own responsibilities as citizens of a democracy.>

There are millions of Americans, not just Jews, who are related to someone whose life was lost or horribly damaged by the Nazi nightmare.

Although the primary focus of this museum is the Shoah and other Nazi atrocities in Europe, a look at its website http://www.ushmm.org/ will show you that it aims to raise awareness of contemporary tragedies in other locations as well, such as the mass murders in the Sudan.

I see Jim hasn't responded to any of the
answers here. Was this just a 'hit and run' kind of provocation?
elaine is offline  
Apr 23rd, 2005, 10:22 PM
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The AAA book said to allow 3 hours for the Holocaust Museum, we were there for almost 7. I won't say the feeling was depressing, but it certainly was eerie and left a pit in my stomach. A suggestion I read somewhere was for after a family trip to the Museum, to maybe sit outside, such as on Capitol steps or Lincoln Memorial, and to discuss the Museum afterwards.

The holocaust was bearly mentionned (and not even by that name for certain) during my HS days.

One thing that left an impact upon me is that Eisenhower KNEW there would be denials of the atrocities in the future, so made an extra effort to document what he found. While I could expect denials maybe 100, 200 or so years, I find it almost impossible to imagine that there would be denials of a Holocaust within a timeframe that included people who lived in that era.

Getting back to travel, I would find it hard to try to do something "fun" after a visit; it just wouldn't seem right. And is the block it's on even considered the Mall? I thought the Mall was only between Independence & Constitution.
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Apr 23rd, 2005, 10:42 PM
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Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.
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