Holocaust Reflection Paper

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The Holocaust is a unit that is taught in school every year. Children start learning about it in fifth grade, and it lasts all throughout high school. However, it wasn’t until my sophomore year where I realized just how terribly difficult it was for the Jewish people. Not only were they victims of the Nazis, but they were also victims of each other. The Judenrat was a Jewish council who had the responsibility of deciding which Jews would either stay or leave the ghettos. In class, I participated in a Judenrat simulation where I was a part of the Judenrat along with a few other classmates. We had to decide which Jews could stay in the ghettos and which Jews had to leave and go to the concentration camps. It was troublesome and somewhat painful to come to a conclusion, because if I could have it my way no Jews would be going in the concentration camps. The majority of the groups in my class picked people who were either young, strong, could communicate in German, or old since death was nearing anyway. However, it was when my teacher questioned us when I realized what it meant to be human. He asked, “If these were all people you knew personally, would you make the same decision?” In my head, I reluctantly answered ‘yes.’ Simply put, to be human means to have compassion and to put others before yourself. In certain situations, a person cannot just think about themselves, but must also look out for others even if it is risky. The Judenrat had tough decisions to make because
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