Holocaust

From 9-11 To 11-9: One American Tragedy To Another!

The 21st century began with the horrific attack on September 11, 2001 on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, killing nearly 3.000 civilians of many nations.

It ushered in a 15 year period of turmoil, division, and tremendous spending to fight terrorism and wage two unwinnable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It has led to persecution of Muslims in America, and promotion of nativism, racism, and antisemitism.

It has caused the two major political parties to fight each other in a way that prevents any cooperation on just about anything.

And then, in the midst of all this chaos and anxiety, along came a charlatan, a rookie in politics, a crooked businessman, a narcissist to the extreme, who was able to convince working class white males that he was their “Superman”, and would end terrorism, crime, and fight Wall Street, all fabrications.

So from the 9-11 tragedy, we went to 11-9, November 9, 2016, the declared victory of Donald Trump, who has caused more division and hatred than anyone in the past 15 years.

And he won due to the quirks of the Electoral College, having only one serious opponent who won electoral votes, but only winning 46 percent of all votes cast.

And November 9 is also the day in 1938 when we had Kristallnacht, the “Night of the Broken Glass”, when thousands of Jews became victims of a pogrom, as businesses and synagogues went up in flames and ushered in the beginning of the Holocaust in Nazi Germany, which killed six million Jews by 1945.

With the rise of white supremacy, and characters such as Richard Spencer and David Duke backing Donald Trump’s attacks on Mexicans. Muslims, and all immigration under attack, one can sense that we might be moving toward Fascism, with only the scandals around Donald Trump giving us the hope that his agenda may be stalled and prevented permanently.

Donald Trump’s Slights Toward The Jewish Community Another Reason Why He Should Be Removed From Office

Donald Trump may have Jewish relatives, including son in law Jared Kushner and his converted daughter Ivanka, but there is simply too much evidence of his latent antisemitism.

Failure to acknowledge the mass murder of Jews in the Holocaust on Holocaust Remembrance Day is unacceptable.

Associating with, and refusing to repudiate the antisemitism of David Duke, Richard Spencer, and other white supremacists, is unforgivable.

Deciding not to attend a Passover Seder in the White House, while he is upstairs, is totally uncalled for, particularly after Barack Obama participated in Passover Seders all eight years he was in the White House, a tradition begun by George W. Bush.

Having his Press Secretary Sean Spicer claim that Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons in World War II, and that six million Jews were sent to “Holocaust Centers”, rather than concentration camps, where they were systematically executed, is a sin which only a summary firing by Donald Trump, and Trump’s own public apology, added to that of Sean Spicer already, can possibly rectify.

But seriously, this is simply another reason why Donald Trump should be removed from office, as his administration has already victimized immigrants, Muslims, African Americans, Latinos, gay and lesbian and transgender people, and women, simply by establishment of bigoted, racist, and misogynistic policies in 80 days in the White House!

Syrian Refugees, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, The Statue Of Liberty, And Donald Trump: This Will Condemn Him In History!

We are commemorating International Holocaust Remembrance Day, a reminder of the massive tragedy of the Holocaust, the slaughter of 6 million Jews and 7 million others by Adolf Hitler and the Nazis in World War II.

Ironically, on that day yesterday, Donald Trump has issued an executive order for a total ban of Syrian refugees–women and children primarily–who have been victims of the Syrian Civil War and Holocaust, that has led to massive numbers of deaths and dislocation of nearly half of the Syrian people.

This reminds us of the immoral ban on Jewish and other refugees trying to escape Nazi control, and the uncaring attitude in America, the nation that sat by and allowed ships to be turned back, and public opinion polls demonstrating widespread antisemitism.

As Chuck Schumer said yesterday, the Statue of Liberty is shedding tears right now, and the image of Ellis Island being sullied by what Trump has done, demonstrating absolutely no morals, ethics, compassion, empathy, but then what is new about that?

Donald Trump’s whole life has been one of total selfishness, greed, and lack of concern for others, including his own wives, children, associates, contractors, and workers, and he has no decent bones in his body.

The man is a monster, elected with the help of Vladimir Putin and the Russians, and about to gut the penalties put on Russia for the takeover of the Crimean section of Ukraine in 2014.

The question is, with this ban of Syrian refugees and a pure anti Islamic ban from many countries, using religion in a discriminatory manner, and with the tension raised with Mexico about the proposed Wall that will not accomplish its goal in the long run, how long until the American people rise up in massive demonstrations on a regular basis and demand the removal of this dangerous demagogue from the Presidency?

War On Gay And Lesbian America In Full Swing By Religious Fanatics And Republicans!

The shocking murder of 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, along with 53 others wounded, many of them in serious condition, is a sign of the war on gays and lesbians raging in America by religious fanatics and Republicans!

The perpetrator was a Muslim fanatic, a person devoted to ISIS, but it is not just Islamic terrorism that is guilty of this crime.

It is religious fanaticism of all religions, which refuses to treat gays and lesbians as human beings with basic human rights, as much as straight Americans.

It is white Americans, black Americans, Hispanic Americans who use their religious fanaticism to hate gays and lesbians, with many people repudiating their own children and other family members.

It is evangelical Christian extremists, Catholic extremists, Jewish extremists, Hindu extremists, Mormon extremists–extremists of all religions—who promulgate hatred and prejudice and discrimination.

It is ministers who promote hate, and priests who promote hate from their pulpits.

It is Republicans who refuse to accept gay rights and gay marriage, and refuse to mention that this terrorist event involved gays and lesbians, as if the people killed do not matter.

It is Donald Trump refusing to acknowledge until just now that gays and lesbians were killed, only bragging that he was “right” that this was another example of radical Islamic terrorism, and calling on Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to resign for refusing to use that term. It took Trump two days until now finally to show concern that it was gays and lesbians who were the victims.

Donald Trump should resign from the race if he refuses to accept that gays and lesbians have the same rights as anyone else in America, including marriage rights, as decided by the Supreme Court of the Unites States.

This is a human rights crisis of massive proportions, and the religious fanatics and Republicans cannot be allowed to triumph, as this would be a crime on the scale of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust against gays and lesbians, often forgotten!

America First From Charles Lindbergh To Pat Buchanan To Donald Trump–1941-2016

In 1941, famed aviator Charles Lindbergh was one of the leading speakers for the America First Committee, arguing against US entrance into World War II. Despite his fame, he was an open antisemite, racist, and nativist who had openly spoken approvingly of Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany!

In 1992, Pat Buchanan, former speechwriter for Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, ran for the Republican Presidential nomination against sitting Republican President George H. W. Bush, promoting antisemitism, racism, and nativism, and denying the Holocaust perpetrated by Nazi Germany. He promoted an overly nationalistic America First foreign policy, similar to Lindbergh a half century earlier.

Now in 2016, Donald Trump is running for President, and likely Republican nominee, and is a racist, nativist, misogynist, and Islamophobe, who is now promoting an America First foreign policy, similar to Lindbergh and Buchanan.

The concept of shutting out the world, ignoring alliances, and alienating other nations, including those who are natural friends, was damaging in 1941 and 1992, and is still so in 2016!

Anti Immigrant Hysteria: 1840s-1850s; 1870s-1880s; 1920s-1940s And Now! Do We Ever Learn?

Part of the ugly side of the history of America is its record of nativism and anti immigrant hysteria.

In the 1840s and 1850s, it was anti Catholic hysteria against the Irish and the German immigrants fleeing from poverty and political turmoil.  The “American” or Know Nothing Party was formed, had some members in Congress, and had former President Millard Fillmore (Whig) win the state of Maryland (heavily Catholic) in the Electoral College in the Presidential Election of 1856.

In the 1870s and 1880s, it was anti Asian hysteria, mostly Chinese at the time, and often led by Irish who had forgotten the prejudice and discrimination they had faced in an earlier generation,and it led to the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, courageously vetoed by President Chester Alan Arthur but passed over his veto by a two thirds majority in the House of Representatives and Senate.

In the 1920s through the Second World War in the 1940s, it was anti “new” immigration, to stop the massive wave of Catholics and Eastern European Jews from coming to America, as well as anti Japanese prejudice, replacing the Chinese who had already been banned from migration to America since 1882.

This led to the horrors of Italians, Jews, and other southern and eastern Europeans denied admission to America during the time of the rise and triumph of Fascism in Italy under Benito Mussolini and Nazism under Adolf Hitler in Germany.

The result was the Holocaust, which America could have worked against by admission of refugees, but just like now, it was Republicans, some Democrats, and conservatives who lobbied against children and women and old people being admitted, due to racism and nativism.

It also led to the forced movement of Japanese Americans into internment camps during the Second World War, as an hysterical reaction to Pearl Harbor being attacked by Japan.

In more recent decades, we have seen growing anti Hispanic and anti Latino discrimination, and now against Muslim and Arab refugees, as if we have learned nothing from our past.

America has been a beacon of hope in a difficult world, and we must not lose our image that the Statue of Liberty represents, so we must salute and applaud President Barack Obama for coming out forcefully against Republican Governors and members of Congress, who are demonstrating the ugliest side of the American experience once again!

Hysteria And Panic Take Over Republicans: Their Loss Of Understanding The Symbolism Of The Statue Of Liberty!

The Republican Party is acting at its most mean spirited nature ever right now—wishing to bar all refugees from Syria, even 5 year old children and mothers, who are victims of one of the most horrible civil wars in modern history!

31 State Governors, almost all Republican, are trying to prevent any migration of refugees to their states, but that is illegal, as no one can prevent any migrant coming to the nation from settling wherever they choose, and to cut off all migration from Syria and the Middle East is outrageous bigotry, as many are saying only Christians and no Muslims should be allowed into the nation.

At the same time that we have thousands of gun deaths from domestic sources annually, now we are seeing hysteria and panic, and the belief that somehow, some terrorists will be admitted, when every day, we have domestic terrorists killing Americans, and nothing is done about that!

Of course, full vetting must be done of all migrants and refugees, but to shut the door completely is to deny the purposes of the Statue of Liberty and the so called “American Dream” that we keep on propagandizing.

Republicans and conservatives are forgetting that our land is founded on the basis of refugees and migrants escaping for a better life, and none of us who are not native American or African American would be here if not for an open mind over the generations toward people of all backgrounds escaping persecution and deprivation!

Barack Obama is right that we must not give up our principles, and must not repeat the horrible anti immigrant mentality that led to discrimination in past times against refugees and migrants of all racial and religious backgrounds, and caused the deaths of many, particularly in the time of pre World War II in Europe when Jews were denied admission and ended up dying in the Holocaust!

Pope Francis: A Gift To The World And Supporter Of Progressive Causes Shared With Barack Obama!

Pope Francis has arrived in the United States, and will be here for six days, traveling to Washington, DC, New York City, and Philadelphia.

It is clear that Pope Francis is a gift to the world and a supporter of progressive causes that he often shares with President Barack Obama!

This Pope is, clearly, the best Pope in the sense of promoting reform, since the time of Pope John XXIII (1958-1963) and the Second Vatican Council.

Pope Francis has made enemies among conservative Catholics and evangelical right wing Christians, who do not pursue the true message of Jesus Christ, the promotion of the poor and the disabled and the sick.

Pope Francis has condemned predatory capitalism which has no concern as to its effect on the poor.

Pope Francis has spoken up on climate change and global warming, infuriating those in the conservative movement and the Republican Party who only think about profits, and reject science.

Pope Francis has attacked the growing income inequality in the world, a dangerous disease that threatens global stability.

Pope Francis has worked to resolve problems in the Catholic Church, and to have a more open mind on divorce, abortion, gay rights, and other controversial social issues, while not wholly backing all of these cultural changes.  But he has demonstrated greater tolerance of differences and opened up a sense of change, which is desperately needed in the Catholic Church, if it is to grow and prosper in the long term.

Pope Francis has engaged in bringing about the restoration of a relationship between the United States and Cuba, something long overdue.

Pope Francis has worked to help Syrian refugees, and generally to encourage immigration reform around the world, as to reject immigrants is against the American historical tradition, and worldwide would be the growth of another Holocaust, as Jews and other refugees suffered in the Second World War.

Pope Francis is a transformational Pope who, hopefully, will have a long range effect on the Catholic Church and the world.

Pope Francis has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, and it is hoped that he will win it, as he richly deserves it!

75th Anniversary Of Second World War Beginning: Nazi Germany Invades Poland!

75 years ago, the Second World War began, with Nazi Germany’s invasion of Poland, becoming the most destructive war in human history!

It led to the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the Western world.

It led to the decline and fall of the British and French Empires.

It led to America becoming the most powerful nation in the world.

It led to the creation of nuclear weapons that would threaten the entire globe.

It led to the Holocaust, which killed nearly 13 million people, including almost 6 million Jews.

It is the most transforming event of the 20th century, but an outgrowth of the First World War.

Study of the Second World War abounds, and it is a constantly fascinating, as well as highly disturbing, subject, and always will be!

The Immigrant Children Of El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala And The History Of Children Escaping Persecution And Death!

Nativism in its most incendiary way is rearing its ugly head in regards to the mass migration of women and children, some of them babies, but all under adult age, who are fleeing persecution, bloodshed, and potential death in the unstable nations of Central America, some of the most violent nations on earth.

This is specifically the case of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, with about 90,000 expected to flee their nations, walking on foot, going through tough terrain, many drowning or being overcome by the elements otherwise, but all wanting a better, more secure existence in America.

But the hysteria has grown, that somehow, these women and children are involved in drug smuggling, or are future terrorists over the next generation, or other such ridiculous, hard hearted views of their plight.

One must not forget, however, that this kind of nativism is nothing new in America!

It was visited upon Jews, Italians, Irish, Polish, Chinese, Japanese, and migrants from Mexico and other Latin American countries over the long haul of American history!

This nation refused to open its borders to Jews wishing to escape Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 1940s, and very small numbers of children were ever allowed in, and many died in the Holocaust!

Nativism was also utilized against Vietnamese escaping the collapse of South Vietnam forty years ago, with many “Boat People” dying in the South China Sea or the Pacific Ocean, but others making it to America, of all ages.

Cubans escaping Fidel Castro, including many children in the Mariel Boat Lift in 1980, were seen as dangerous and should not be admitted, but eventually were, since they could not be returned to Cuba.

The attempts to bring some Iraqis and Afghans of Muslim religion to this country has been a long battle as well.

But we have a tendency to forget we are a nation of immigrants, and particularly in times of political, social, and economic turmoil, we are the last best hope of mankind to offer asylum!

So now, IF the families of these children from El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala can be reunited, then they may be returned to their host nations, but that should only be if their lives are not in danger, as to return them to certain death is unconscionable!

But IF the families cannot be reunited, sad as that may be, we have no realistic choice but to house, feed, and educate them, and give them the possibility of the “American Dream”!

If we simply reject these children and young mothers, we are losing the whole purpose of the American experiment, as expressed by the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. We cannot turn our back on these children and condemn them to death, particularly in a nation which claims to support life itself as a goal!