Today, Thursday January 28, will mark 60 years that Auschwitz was liberated by the Russian Army. I think about this period of history quite often. The older I become the more incomprehensible I find it. I try to imagine what it would be like to have all my possessions and rights taken away from me. I imagine having to wear a Jewish Star on my lapel for identification. I imagine being thrown into a cattle car and then the worst of all a concentration camp,

No matter how much I try to imagine the horrors, I know the reality was worse than what I can envision. Six million Jews (as well as Catholics, gypsies, gays) endured during that period.

But one thing I do comprehend is how lucky we are here in this country with the freedoms we have. We have the freedom to choose what religion we practice, we have the freedom to choose to become anything we want. We have the freedom to voice our opinions about our elected officials, we have the freedom to write an editorial to a newspaper about how we feel about issues, without repercussions. Think about all we have to be grateful for, the list could go on and on!

Just remember before we go to sleep each night we go to a warm bed, with our stomach full and we have our families.

My New Years resolution has been to be less judgmental of others. We don’t know what anything is really like until we actually wear other peoples shoes (and I’ve worn plenty of shoes ! ) When I’m down and out all I remind myself is about that period in history and believe me I snap out of my depression really fast !

I just recently read a book about WWII, in which there was a quote that said:

” long after the Germans stop saying Heil Hitler, we will still be reciting the “Shema.”

How true!

Written by : Sonia Schall

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