Think about the lyrics to Where Have All The Flowers Gone. (When will they ever learn?) Think about the mountains that were climbed to make sure Yom Hashoah/Holocaust commemoration is observed in every state capitol in the USA. Think about why the survivors and the Second Generation (the 2Gs) and people like Rabbi Yitz Greenberg, an early Holocaust theologian; Stuart Eizenstat and Richard Holbrooke, who convinced President Jimmy Carter to create the US Holocaust Memorial Council; survivors Elie Weisel, Ernie Michel and Ben and Vladka Meed, all did what they did to put Holocaust Education, really Genocide Studies, on society’s front burner. "Zachor, Remember," they said.
Ask yourselves why they poured their passion and precious time into making sure they told the stories of what happened to them in Europe. The eyewitnesses and victims were our parents, and once they were convinced to tell their stories, it wasn't about being victims. It was about remembering what it was like to be victims for a reason. What was it they wanted us to remember and why? It turns out that it wasn't only about Six Million Souls—our families, our teachers, our poets, artists, rabbis. They chose to go with Holocaust Education and Commemoration, and started in the state houses because politicians caused the Holocaust.
Remembering the dead leaves us Jews to say Kaddish. Remembering HOW they got to be dead is what the point of all that passion for educating the public is about.
Remember how politicians manipulated people by words. WORDS! Over a period of 20 years. German politicians and their allies in the media convinced their constituents that people who had lived among them for 1000years as relatively good neighbors living mostly in peace and fully integrated into all parts of German society, became vermin to be exterminated and turned into products. Most of the Germans couldn't have cared less about who the Chancellor was and what he and the government were doing as long as they had what they wanted. So they enabled that government to take everything they could from the Jews—from their property and bank accounts—to their gold teeth and their very lives....