WORDS MATTER-One of the characteristics of the Alt-Right is how they view themselves as the victims of everyone else. To the Alt Right, Christians are the most persecuted group of people in the world.
On the flip side of this belief we find Holocaust Deniers. These people deny the Hitlerian Genocide of Jews and others; there are also those who deny the earlier Armenian Genocide.
Not only has Donald Trump removed Jews from Holocaust Remembrance Day, he has removed Gypsies, (called Roma these days) and he has omitted mentioning Trade Unionists and Catholic priests. Trump pretends that he is being all inclusive by excluding the groups who were actually the targets of Hitler’s genocide.
Here is what Trump’s White house wrote:
“It is with a heavy heart and somber mind that we remember and honor the victims, survivors, heroes of the Holocaust. It is impossible to fully fathom the depravity and horror inflicted on innocent people by Nazi terror.
Yet, we know that in the darkest hours of humanity, light shines the brightest. As we remember those who died, we are deeply grateful to those who risked their lives to save the innocent.
In the name of the perished, I pledge to do everything in my power throughout my Presidency, and my life, to ensure that the forces of evil never again defeat the powers of good. Together, we will make love and tolerance prevalent throughout the world.”
Trump has removed the concept of Genocide from the Remembrance. He refers to “depravity and horror inflicted on innocent people,” but he is silent about the attempt to eradicate an entire people. Trump’s words about the Holocaust could have been used to describe the Chicago murder rate which he termed “horrible carnage.”
Trump has taken a significant step toward the Holocaust Deniers’ camp by making no mention of Jews and no mention of Genocide. “Holocaust” by itself does not mean “genocide.” Then Trump quickly makes himself the center of attention by saying, “…I pledge to do everything in my power throughout my Presidency, and my life….”
In 2015, President Obama’s statement remembered Jews and the other victims. Contrary to Trump, one does not have to exclude Jews in order to remember others; one does not have to omit genocide to decry other crimes against humanity. President Obama said:
“Today, with heavy hearts, we remember the six million Jews and the millions of other victims of Nazi brutality who were murdered during the Holocaust.
Yom HaShoah is a day to reaffirm our responsibilities to ourselves and future generations. It is incumbent upon us to make real those timeless words, ‘Never forget. Never again.’ Yet, even as we recognize that mankind is capable of unspeakable acts of evil, we also draw strength from the survivors, the liberators, and the righteous among nations who represented humanity at its best.
With their example to guide us, together we must firmly and forcefully condemn the anti-Semitism that is still far too common today. Together we must stand against bigotry and hatred in all their forms. And together, we can leave our children a world that is more just, more free, and more secure for all humankind.”
At the same time Trump was omitting Jews and Genocide from the Holocaust Remembrance, he was denying access to refugees seeking asylum from persecution -- except for Christians who get a free pass.
(Richard Lee Abrams is a Los Angeles attorney. He can be reached at: [email protected]. Abrams views are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of CityWatch.) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.