Saturday, February 19, 2005

Reflections on The Holocaust

Subject: "Auschwitz" (Doc shown on NPR last night...)

Chilling, horrifying; I went to bed terribly sobered.

So painful to recall man's inhumanty to man. I never knew it was so
systematic, so caculated and orchestrated a genocide. Utterly demonic.

And what it forced the starving Jews in the ghettot to do to each other
(!) --, and the relationship of the not-yet-rounded-up & incarcerated City
jews to them. Incredible.

I was invited --as a college prexy--in the eary Seventies to go to
Washington and assist the federal Dept. of Education screen grant
proposals. The 200 educators were divided up into two-member teams who
spent half the day together in the winnowing process, and I was teamed for
almost a week with a history-political science professor from a Penna.
state college, who turned out to be the official spokesperson, and
Director for the the world educational program "We Must-Never-Let-Them (the
children)-Forget..." In our breaks we had some cordial but vigorous
discussions, in which I endeavored to de-code the Jewish propaganda
movement with "We Must Never Let Them Forgive..." I see now that I largely
misread her, thinking that she was a red-hot radical who needed to find
better balance. I think it's probably the first time I encountered
righteous indignation so personal and at close range, and couldn't absorb
it, so had to belittle it somehow.

I realize this morning how horriffic this chapter in human history is, and
what a personal struggle she was going through. I have to consider this
viewing a pivotal point in the education of George Akers--a little late,
but oh so imperative... Yes, only the grace of God can find forgiveness
to the Nazis --and I relize anew what an"after-conversion conversion" Corey
Ten Boon went through.

And speaking of much of what passes for education today is
SOULESS, merely a collection of factoids of trivia and sweeping
generalizations that do not impart sensitivity & compassion. 'Hardly tells
the story or really makes the point. I mean somehow evokoing a vicarious
participation in the pathos of the human experience--its trials & triumphs;
the agony and the ecstasy.

The study of history must impart the LESSONS of history, and the arts and
social sciences must feed our souls. I see a new moving role for the
media. Last night impressed me that we are toying with a tremendously
powerful teaching tool. I hope we don't squander it on the mere
titillations of the flesh. Holly wood has all but totally prostituted this
gift from God. How great its accountabiliity!