Re-membering

27 Jan

January 27.

How can I forget?

I will always remember.

I wasn’t there, but those who were are always with me.

January 27, 1945: Soviet troops liberated Auschwitz and thereby introduced me to some of the most remarkable and lovely people I have ever met. 

Today, International Rememberance Day, honors those liberators as well as the liberated and those who never got the chance to be liberated. 

(Don’t worry, ‘mericans, our troops get their own Rememberence day in April in recognition of the liberations of Buchenwald and Dachau as reflected in this prior blog post.)

72 years ago today began the dismantling of a highly organized system devoted to the annihilation of cultures and individuals who were deemed dangerous threats to national security. 

72 years ago today began the modern world’s struggle for peace.

72 years ago today people around the globe woke up and realized that the “simple solutions” offered to Germanyโ€™s very real 20th century economic and social concerns not only failed to work, they had produced catastrophic consequences that few could comprehend or believe. 

On January 27, 1945, the global citizenry woke up and realized that over the past several years (the precise timeline is open to interpretation) their fears, frustrations, and hopes had been exploited. Their dreams of a better, more prosperous future had instead become a nightmare of unimaginable consequences. They couldn’t believe that their country had propagated such horrors. 


Sure, many of them agreed that Jews or dykes or gypsies were untrustworthy probably dangerous rapscallions. And, yes, they saw these folks as threats to their own personal economic well-being (Jews “took” a lot of jobs back then, you know). Something had to be done about this! so many of them agreed in 1933. And so they chose a leader who spoke to them in a way that made sense. And they believed in him and they hoped and they closed their eyes and minds and continued to hope-beyond-all-reason that somehow things would get better even while all around them things only got worse…

And then 72 years ago today the Soviets–the Soviets of all people!–marched in and revealed all. It was game-over and people tried to pretend that they didn’t even know what happened. Tried to pretend that it wasn’t their fault. Lied to themselves and said “I only wanted the best for my family.”

Guess what?

The entire world is your family.

We are all in this together.

That child from Syria? She’s your cousin.

That young man in prison? He’s your cousin, too.

That person you squint at and can’t quite figure out for whatever reason? Your cousin as well.

We share this planet, its resources, and its problems equally. Every single one of us wants the exact same thing: To feel safe and secure and loved.

And then only way to get there is by going backwards: Feel the love first.

That’s it. 

Feel love.

Share love.

Think only about being a constant source of love. 

Do not allow yourself to hate.

Everyone around you is your cousin. She might be your “crazy” cousin or your drunk cousin or your cousin who just can’t seem to get his shit together for whatever reason, but s/he’s family.

Remember that. 

That person you fear is your global family member.

Remember that: The person you fear is your family member. Re-member him. Welcome her in. Do not turn your back. Do not close your eyes. Do not stop sharing love.

Re-member.

2 Responses to “Re-membering”

  1. Anonymous January 28, 2017 at 5:11 am #

    Good one, cuz!

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