Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Teacher's Pet

teacher's pet

In my favourite class, we have been discussing/critiquing various memorials dedicated to WWII's holocaust. Today one of the critiqued memorials is a monument in the Ukraine, dedicated to around 2,000 Jews who were slaughtered there. It's a beautiful monument, but there's a funny twist: Nowhere on the monument does it mention that the victims were Jewish; instead, they're listed as "Citizens of the Soviet Union."

My professor asked if there's a problem with that, with not recognizing the victims' Jewish heritage; for, when we separate people into different categories, are we not adhering to some aspect of Hitler's beliefs - that people are not inherently the same?

I raised my hand, unable to sit still; the professor looked at me.

"Yes, but the problem is, they weren't killed because they were Soviet citizens. They were killed because they were Jewish."

And thereafter commenced the following conversation:

d: I love it when I get the answer right.
k: And the way he looks at you when you do...
d: Totally. It's all, "You. Me. My office. Now."

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