Concerns with the Rise of Populism

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Populism is not a good thing nor has it ever been. It is political leaders rising to strength through fear and misunderstanding the majority of people in a country possess. People to do this was Hitler, Stalin and now Donald Trump. Using fear to recruit a following can only equate to horrible things to rise in the future.

The Men In The Pink Triangle

Incase you wanna buy which I recommend: https://www.amazon.com/Men-Pink-Triangle-Life-Death/dp/1555830064

This was one of my primary sources for my research paper on Gay Rights Before, During, and After the Nazi Regime. This book tells the story of Friedrich-Paul von Groszheim, a gay man who was captured and imprisoned in a concentration camp until Liberation. This was not only a interesting subject because I am gay, but is interesting because you never hear the stories of the minor groups that were persecuted under the Nazis. Gay men were one of the most targeted and abused while in prison. The  SS encouraged other prisoners to harass and abuse gay prisoners. They were isolated from everyone else and had to sleep with special rules such as not having the lights off and having their hands under the covers. The curative experiments would be the cause of death of many and source of resentment for women for others. Even after liberation they would still face persecution and routine imprisonment for violating the homophobic law of Paragraph 175.

We Wish To Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With The Rest Of Our Families

This gripping novel tells the stories of those who managed to survived the Rwandan Genocide. Gourevitch travels to Rwanda and interviews the survivors of the Hutu Government lead massacre of the Tutsi people. The first couple chapters describes where and the scale of the genocide. He describes how once he walked through a field and he heard the crunching of bones from the remains of the people who were slaughtered there a year before. The field led to a church where the Tutsis were promised to be safe. However, this was  a lie and all the people who remained in eh church faced torture, rape, and eventual death. The bodies still laid out, to serve as a memorial and gruesome reminder of the atrocities that were committed not a year earlier.

The book also describes the origins of the tensions between the Hutus and Tutsis. Many theories exist, but all play a part I think. There is the Hammic myth where it tells the story of Noah and his sons. Two of his sons, the first white men, stop there brother Ham, the original black man, from embarrassing their father Noah. As punishment for trying to do that, Noah curses Ham to be never as equal as his brothers. This later is a factor when European Colonists come in and use it to their advantage to keep the two in contrast with one another. Tutsis had more the European features with lighter skin, slender, small nose. The Hutus were the stereotypical African with broad shoulders, dark skin, and a large nose. These features would help them be separated from the superior to the inferior. These and many other factors would help lead to the slaughter of almost 1 million people in the 1990s.

Paragraph 175

Primo Levi

Levi’s recon t on his experience in Auschwitz is a literary master piece and tells the horrific story of surviving in the Nazi’s most well known camps. He recounts how people were first delivered to the camp in cattle cars, waiting for their slaughter after they step out of the train car. The prisoners were then moved into the camp, where they were striped, shaven, and had all possessions taken away from them. They were treated as less than human, just animals that the SS held disgust for. Levi tells of his time is the disease ridden infirmary known as Ka-Be. Other places of the camp were horrid, but here where the sick lay for death, thieves ran amuck and stole whatever they could get their hands on. Levi always draws on how the people in Auschwitz have become what they are treated. Animals. They seem to lose their humanity and result to the basic instincts of survival and do whatever it takes to do that. There only man that Levi knows that is in touch with his humanity is Alberto, his best friend. This book was really well done and great selection for the class to have a first person view of the events in Auschwitz.

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