Then I also wondered why America didnt boycott Germany as soon as the Nazis started removing civil rights from Jews, political opponents, disabled people and homosexuals in 1933?Most people would say that Americans didnt know what was going on either in the early years or when the extermination began in 1939. We complain that the Nazis closed the gay bars in Berlin in 1933; but how many openly gay bars even existed in America at that time?You may be interested in reading more recent items on my BLOG on HOLOCAUST, GERMAN, JEWISH, and LGBT TOPICS There is also an entire Series of Essays on being the Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees Below is an article that I wrote in 2007.
Then they came for the Jews and I didn't speak up because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the trade unionists and I didn't speak up because I didn't practice a trade.
But the Nazis perfected the art of scapegoating into a science.
By disseminating vicious propaganda, passing discriminatory laws, spiraling down freedoms with increasing terrorism, the Nazis succeeded in turning a civilized democratic German state into a mass killing machine.
In a way, todays struggle for total equal rights for Americas LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community reminds me of the same pattern.
When I was younger all 50 states criminalized same sex love making.
Living in the aftermath of the Holocaust for over sixty years, we all can learn several lessons from what happened so that it does not occur again.
Hitlers basic strategy consisted of creating scapegoats, sub-humans or perpetual enemies, then escalating the discrimination to murder.
He wanted to see if the world would react negatively to the arrest of 20,000 Jewish men, random murders of Jews, the destruction of hundreds of Synagogues and thousands of Jewish businesses. Hitler then permitted 936 Jews to leave Germany on the S. Louis returned to Europe, and many were doomed to their death after the Nazis conquest expanded.
Politicians often attribute the world war and the Holocaust to Neville Chamberlains appeasement of Hitlers annexation of former German speaking regions.