The Holocaust - A Whole Burnt Offering

May 1, 2008
By Ashlee Weierbach, Albrightsville, PA

Before I start rambling on about my opinion in this case of World War Two, I would like to state the fact that I went on a field trip before writing this essay. We were told to just write two paragraphs about what we learned and how we felt but I just could not stop writing! We went to The Jewish Community Center in Wilksbarre, Pa. There was a video we watched first that almost made me cry. It was very sad and depressing. Then we had a Holocaust sirvivor talk to us about his experiences. Here is my story:


All it took was one man. Imagine if right now it only took one man to start a war and not a whole country itself. Adolf Hitler was this one man. Through the German sufferings of World War One, Adolf Hitler came to power by promising the German people their land back with many other offerings. With this little taste of power Hitler used it to expand his control over the German nation.


Adolf Hitler knew the German people hated other countries for the loss of land and supplies after they were defeated during the first World War, as well as he did. Using this hatred for other people, Hitler finally found someone to blame for Germany's losses. Technically speaking, Hitler did not find someone; he found one race of people. These innocent people were called the Jews as well as the handicapped, old men and women, and gypsies.


After getting full power in Germany, Hitler started to try and get land back that was payments for the destruction during the World War One. He recovered much of the land that was lost after the war. Hitler would not stop at the land that was lost after the war, he kept trying to expand Germany's borders so eventually he would come to concur the entire Eastern Hemisphere and work towards gaining the Western Hemisphere as well.


This however never happened. Almost all of the Jews and "undesirables" were sectioned off from all of the people Adolf considered "normal". Placed into "Ghettos" first and then deported, life for the "undesirables" and Jews was horrible. They had new laws put into place such as; All Jews had to be indoors by eight o'clock and Jews could only shop between three and five o'clock in the afternoon. All these laws were only set for the Jews and "undesirables" that didn't escaped Germany and surrounding countries in time to advert this prosecution.


When the Jewish and "undesirables" were deported to concentration camps they were told to bring only what they could carry. Most of what they brought would not even make it with them into the camps. They were loaded in at about ninety to one hundred people per boxcar like animals were herded into a box. Once they got to the concentration camps, they were told to move to either the left or right. One of the lines, the left or right, were going to the chambers right away. They would be put into a room and a gas called Zyklon B, was poured into the chambers. It usually took around three to fifteen minutes for everyone to perish due to this gas in the gas chambers.

Over six million innocent Jews were killed and about five to six million others were also killed during the Holocaust. Out of about eleven to twelve million people who perished, about one and a half million of them were children under the age of eighteen.


In my opinion knowing all of this information and knowing I can't do anything about it truly upsets me. I would like to know why if the government of America kind of new what was going on, why didn't we step in and do anything? If we would have stepped in and did something we could have made a definite impact on the number of innocent lives that were lost. Due to America not doing anything about the situation, I think that America should always remember what happened and hang their heads in shame knowing that what we did was the biggest mistake in all of American History. I did not realize how badly that this subject would affect me because it never really did just reading books about what happened. Finally seeing actually photos and hearing people talk about their experiences, really hit home for me. I will always remember what happened and no matter what will never be as ignorant to say that the Holocaust never happened.


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This article has 9 comments.


on Mar. 16 2012 at 5:13 pm
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

And they always fail to mention the Code Talkers, or Native Americans helping in general. Not a word in my entire history book. 

on Mar. 16 2012 at 5:08 pm
BlueRain BRONZE, Clarkston, Michigan
2 articles 5 photos 254 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

I remembering the explanation I gave in elementary school during a discussion we had: "Hitler was a toy, and the people who followed him were like batteries; the toy has all the mechanisms to perform a task, but without being given the power by the batteries, it can't do anything, and without the toy, the batteries had no system to operate." Not to say that his ideas were any less bad, I'm definitely not advocating that, but all through school whenever we learned about the Holocaust it was either about how Hitler was this all-powerful mastermind or that Germans were evil in general. What a horribly misconstrued message to give to children! They should be told how media and propaganda and charismatic speakers influenced a group of desperate people into believing this one man was right. The vast majority of Germans didn't even agree, they feared speaking out because of the punishments it carried.

And it's still in debate whether he was under the influence of drugs. Journal entries from Theodor Morell and his Propaganda Prime Minster, Josef Goebbels,  support the side that he was.

America has always held a vast amount of prejudices. We still do. I share your feelings about that...


Genya GOLD said...
on Mar. 16 2012 at 4:49 pm
Genya GOLD, Bridgewater, New Jersey
10 articles 0 photos 53 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Never do anything that you wouldn't want to explain to the paramedics."-Unknown Author

We learned about the 8 stages of a genocide in World Civ.

The last stage is not extermination, it is interestingly enouhg, denial. Enough people just didn't want to face up to their horrible mistakes to make it become a pattern.


on Nov. 5 2011 at 10:17 am
The_Earl_of_Zerces PLATINUM, Waukesha, Wisconsin
36 articles 0 photos 106 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."
-Sigmund Freud

We didn't do anything about the Concentration Camps at first for two big reasons. We were in deep denial over the idea of genocide, and we convinced ourselves that the Holocaust couldn't possibly be going on, because it was so inhumane. Actually, no, that's not quite right. You see, we also hated Jews and Commies(who were actually the first people Hitler went after, not the Jews) and Homosexuals and other minorites that Hitler was targeting. Sure, we never wanted to haul them all up and gas them, but we hated them enough to turn a blind eye when Hitler started to get more obvious. Also, the problem with the Holocaust is that X357 is inevitable. Hitler wasn't the sole cause of the Holocaust, he only gave people an outlet for their hatred and bitterness. Really, Not too many people in Germany actually knew what was going on, but again, they were so desperate for salvation after the Allies destroyed everything there and left, the Germans didn't ask too many questions. Even if Hitler never existed, the Holocuast would have still happened, because it was the result of Old World Imperialism and dogmaticism. I'm sorry, I've rambled, but I too get very depressed when I think about the Holocaust and it's hard to put my thoughts into coherent sentences.

lszyman96 said...
on Jun. 17 2010 at 12:07 pm
lszyman96, Romeoville, Illinois
0 articles 0 photos 24 comments

Favorite Quote:
" stay golden ponyboy"
-the outsiders

i feel the exact same way you do

on May. 13 2010 at 7:39 am
EricBlair BRONZE, London, Other
2 articles 0 photos 31 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I understand HOW, I do not understand WHY" -George Orwell, 1984

I meant that partially as a joke to mock far leftys, who actually would agree with some of your accusations for the sake of the ideal of tolerance.

Usually when I say intolerance I mean of religion, race, creed, ect, but I never mean we should tolerate immorality.#

Just for the record, Churchill was fully aware of the camps and considered bombing them to prevent further suffering, but then how easy would it have been for Nazis to clean up the rubble and say it didn't happen?


MaeFlower said...
on Apr. 12 2010 at 10:44 am
MaeFlower, Aurora, Colorado
0 articles 0 photos 27 comments

"Intolerance should be destroyed in all forms."

 Now that is a very dangerous idea.  I understand you being chivalrous and trying to sound good, but it should not be entirely destroyed.

 What about intolerance for murder?  Rape?  There are horrible crimes commited every day that if we tolerate, will only get worse.


on Feb. 27 2010 at 12:53 pm
AlexandraRose BRONZE, Port Hardy, Other
1 article 0 photos 41 comments
You have a point in saying that America did almost noting to help but manny other countries did help. The Dutch :approximately ten percent were involved in resistance activities and perhaps a fraction of one percent of those in the resistance took up the dangerous work of trying to hide or otherwise rescue Jews . In Poland : 6,006 men and women (more than any other country) have been recognized as .rescuers by Yad Vasem in Israel. In France: The French town of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon sheltered several thousand Jews . In Belgium: In April 1943, members of the Belgian resistance held up the twentieth convoy train to Auschwitz, and freed 231 people. In Denmark: Denmark rescued around 7,500 Jews en masse in August - October 1943. These are just a few examples of countries that risked every thing to save there jewish population.

on Nov. 9 2009 at 3:04 pm
EricBlair BRONZE, London, Other
2 articles 0 photos 31 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I understand HOW, I do not understand WHY" -George Orwell, 1984

I have done VERY extensive research and am fully capable of providing answers to your ending questions. However, I do see their greater value as rhetorical.

Intolerance should be destroyed in all forms.


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