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Remembering Auschwitz... and The Lessons I Learnt

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Hi loves... Just before I go on with this post, I would recommend you read up about my story- it'll help you understand a lot of where I'm coming from.



This morning, I woke up and went on twitter to promote the post I had just published- A Countdown To Uni. In the past few weeks, twitter has been a place of community for me- and it has given me a great platform to talk about my blog. 

But today, when I went on twitter and saw what people were saying, I cried. 


Because what I saw when I went on twitter was several people who I follow, talk about the fear they carry with them every day, because they are black in America. 

And what I saw when I went on twitter was that the President of the United States of America had failed to stand up for them and give them a voice- even when one of their own was killed.

"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality"

My Dad always taught me to speak up against things I don't agree on, and both of my parents taught me about the hardships that were faced by those who were oppressed in the second world war. 

One thing that always stuck with me was the concept that if you see wrong being done, and do not side against it, you too become a part of the community that does wrong.

When I was about 15 (or younger) my parents took me to Auschwitz. 

That was where I had my first panic attack. 

I remember it so clearly; an overwhelming feeling of panic, and a sudden need to escape. Through tears, and sporadic breaths, I begged my Dad to let me leave and wait for them in the car park. I didn't know what to do, and I was immensely afraid. At the time, I resented my Dad for not letting me leave- but now I realise he was teaching me a very important lesson.

Instead of letting me run away and forget about the whole event, he gently guided me towards a huge quote;

"The one who does not remember history is bound to live through it again"

And as I stood there with tears streaming down both of my cheeks, he told me to remember this.

My Dad's hope for me was -just as anyone's hope for their children- that I would grow up in a world free of oppression. But he knew that many parents raise their children in the midst of oppression. 

I pray that I never have to face that- because the fear and panic I felt when I entered Auschwitz must have only been a TINY fraction of the fear and panic that its hostages felt.

So I can imagine, when there are people in America representing groups like the Nazis and White Supremacists, that there will be plenty of people experiencing complete and utter panic. And I can imagine that when your President does not defend what is right, that panic only heightens. 

Now, I'm not an American, but I know that when Donald Trump said that America was "a nation, founded on the truth that all of us are equal", he told a lie. Even I was taught in school of the hardships that were faced by the native American people. 

Instead, what Donald Trump would have said if he had remembered his history, is that America was founded on immense inequality of the grossest kind- but that it is time to rise above that. It is time for America to see the light; and stand up for what is right, and cast out what is bad.

Of course, he didn't say that.

Instead, he just said that both sides were just as bad as eachother.

Adios, xo

26 comments:

  1. I hate how the world has turned out. History keeps repeating itself even though one might think history makes a good lesson to learn something.

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  2. This was so well written and I find your perspective incredibly refreshing. I, too, wrote about what is happening in America and what it's like living in the United States (see here: http://girlingamba.com/living-in-the-united-states/) and it's such a sad and uncertain time for us right now.

    -GG
    www.girlingamba.com

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment. Your post was extremely eye-opening, and I would really recommend anyone who sees this comment to check it out.

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  3. Wow, this must've been so hard to visit. I haven't gone to see it. My sister went to see it when she was on a school trip but I never had the opportunity. I dunno if I could go see it because I'm highly emotional and being Polish would bring out so many emotions. I believe these places are important to see to remember and honor the victims I just don't know if I personally could do it.

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    1. Kasia, I completely empathise with your position. My Mum is from Poland, so I grew up going to and from the country- and consider it a huge part of my heritage. Personally -although it was one of the (if not THE) most difficult things I've ever experienced- I think everyone should go to Auschwitz at some point.

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  4. This was such an interesting read, loved your points. It is truly sad that we never learn from the past, there have been such great atrocities, but those in power seem to forget.

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    1. I think to a certain extent we are all to blame for forgetting about these horrible events at some points... perhaps if everyone kept this history in mind, their actions would be different.

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  5. I would never visit a place like Auschwitz. I just can't physically or mentally stand it.

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    1. Nikoza, I understand what you mean... to an extent. But while it was TERRIFYING feeling all panicky and not being able to do anything about it, the experience of going to Auschwitz taught me THE most important lesson probably of my life. As I said, the panic attack I had there would have had nothing on the immense fear of the people who were IMPRISONED in the concentration camp.

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  6. only the learnt lessons make you even more stronger and best future planner!

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    1. I couldn't agree with you more Vipul!!!

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  7. You write so nicely. I am from Poland, an opressed country for many years. I believe that that general, national opression (or gender it could be or race) is carried for a long time by the generations.

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment, Anna. I am glad that I can shine some light on the situation.

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  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  10. SO scary, the world we are living in. I feel sad for the generations to come. :( -Shelby G.

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  11. These are volatile times but, there is hope for us all. If each one of us can extend a helping hand to others, listen, ask questions and embrace one another in peace we will slowly but surely find our equilibrium again.
    During the Nazi regime in Germany, there were brave souls who fought the atrocities by hiding Jewish families and rescuing their children from imminent death.
    We all have a morale responsibility on this planet to be our brothers keeper and until we stand in unity with others of like mind, the hatred and chaos will persist.
    I have not been able to write about the sad events in Charlottesville because I am heartbroken by the hatred.
    Thanks for your story...

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    1. Eliz, thank you so much for this comment. I was deeply saddened by some of the comments that had been left on this post (several which I have had to delete, because I STRONGLY disagree with them, and want this post to be a respectful space).
      So I really, really appreciate you shining light on what happened during the war time in the past. Thank you.

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  12. This was very interesting and well-written. Thank you for sharing!

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  13. Very well written post. Sure we should be looking to our President for positive motivation. But it truly is up to us to stop all of this hate.

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    1. Absolutely Kori. Each person is only responsible for his or her own reaction to these events.

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  14. Interesting story. Hatred must be put to stop, one fine day it will and it should!

    Pammy -joyfulsource.com

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  15. Well put.Just wish more Americans would see these sites so they could better understand.

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  16. I wish all the hate and mistreat would just stop I can even watch the news anymore.

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