Tuesday, June 3, 2008


I spent the morning here, a majority of which I lingered in the Holocaust exhibit. Every time I visit something this shocking and moving I come away emotionally drained and sitting and pondering how?

It is amazing to me that people allow people to get so far off course. How do we allow ourselves to get so numb? How do we become so blind? How to we allow ourselves to get so wrapped up? How?

Being in that exhibition is truly an intense experience. I forced myself to slow down, to take it in as much as I could and take it in wholely. I ended up spending over 2 hours and I didn't leave with much more understanding than I gained from the museum in DC, but I was once again touched by survivors, by stories of light and faith unshaken. It's just mind blowing to think that humans could be so cruel, so dehumanizing, so merciless. It's even more overwhelming to think how recent it was.

I was looking at drawings and letters from litter girls arranged carefully in a glass case when I saw a picture of Micky Mouse on one of them. It forced me to re-realize that this was just 60 years ago. Intellectually I'm well aware of the contemporary nature of WWII, but it's not until I see the scrawl of a 7-year-old Jewish girl from a ghetto writing her friend about Micky that it really hits me how primitive we still are. We're immature. We can't solve problems without fighting. And what's worse is that we often don't even try.

I am grateful for those willing to share their experiences and talents so I have a chance to reevaluate myself and ponder in what ways I am numbing myself to the cruelties I inflict on others. Striving for understanding is important to me, even if it is just understanding myself. Striving to understand people and make connections is one thing that I can't be indifferent to. People simply matter too much to pass by.

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