If you haven’t seen it yet I highly recommend watching this segment of Last Week Tonight on the Uighurs.. When I was in college I took a class on the representation of the Holocaust (with one of the top experts in the field. It was amazing). Years later I still think about the paradox of holocaust survivors giving testimony. Some felt they had to do so to spread awareness even though recalling what happened was often traumatizing. But how can a story like theirs be understood by those of us with no frame of reference? When a survivor said they were cold trudging through the snow in clogs and rags, how does that translate when my definition of “cold” stems from the times I wore too light of a coat at the beginning of the winter? What is gained by forcing a man to describe how he felt as he shaved the heads of his children before they were killed? In theory? To prevent future genocides. So this kind of thing would never sneak up on us again.
I can’t remember which testimony it was (if you know the one I’m talking about please send it!). But I remember a woman (decades after it was over) breaking down because of the genocides that were going on at the time. What was the point? Why will no one listen? How did we learn nothing?
I know it’s frustrating to add something else to the list of all the horror going on right now. I know so many feel hopeless. I sure do. But I don’t think our not so distant relatives, who stayed strong in the face of unimaginable adversity, would look the other way. Get the word out. Share this video or others like it. At the very least we can get people to look.