E-mail: Why No Holocaust?

Added on by PS Cat02.

We frequently receive thoughtful and interesting e-mails. I'll try to post some of them here in my diary. This one is from A., she is 14 years old.

[ note: These e-mails have been edited for length. ]

Dear PinkyShow, ...I have gone through and watched most of your videos, and took particular interest in the one on the definition of "Crimes Against Humanity". I would like to request (as I am so bold) that you do an episode... on the Holocaust. I am currently 14½ years old, and I have been studying anything I can find on the holocaust for several years... I may not be Jewish, but the indecency and lack of cause disturbed me into interest of the subject. I have done many school reports, papers, forced class speaking and informative posters on the subject, as well as reading more books than I would care to count. I've spent numerous hours on the internet, finding as many pictures, videos, articles, names, dates, quotes, and re-tellings that I can find. The Holocaust has become to me what some may call "a sick obsession"... After seeing your video on "Crimes Against Humanity" I searched YouTube for hours finding many videos and slideshows of Holocaust horrors (as the Holocaust, in my opinion, is the most indecent and despicable crime against humanity ever committed.). I wondered how, after discussing so many interesting things and so many topics on politics, the Holocaust itself didn't come up in any discussion of yours. It would mean a lot to me, and all those who died at the hands of the Nazis (god rest their souls), if you would take a bit of time and dedicate it to the Holocaust. This, of coarse, is just my suggestion, and you have no need to accept it if you feel so as not to do so... I believe the Holocaust is the worst case when it comes to crimes against humanity...

A. (who is a girl)

My reply:

Hi A.,

Thank you for your thoughtful note.

A., I have to agree with you about how many parts of human history seems to be very dark and painful. To be honest, we here at the Pinky Show often feel very repulsed by the darker aspects of human nature. But we also think it's important to study it, if only because these matters continue to be so relevant today. We are genuinely shocked at how throughout world history human beings have heaped such horrible campaigns of death on each other, over and over again (although maybe not always conscious of what has come before). The Shoah is probably the most well-known example in this country, and as such it's probably easier to find information about it compared to other genocides. One day I would like to do an episode (or episodes) on this subject, but for the time being I've been focusing more of my attention on the genocide of Native North Americans. Not because the Shoah is somehow less worthy of attention, but because in my opinion a lot of Americans still don't want to talk about it (understandable, all things considered). Of course for me this just means that we absolutely must study it. There are lots of important texts on the subject - a place to start if you are interested:

American Holocaust, David Stannard.
Facing West, Richard Drinnon.
A Little Matter of Genocide, Ward Churchill.

Personally I don't say that the Shoah is not as important as Native American genocide, or vice versa. The logic of genocide is evil in every case, and I cannot in good conscience tell the victims of any like situation that they have been less victimized. I think this in itself can be hurtful or dehumanizing, no disrespect intended to the countless innocents who perished in occupied Europe.

Sincerely yours,