Germany unveils monument to homosexual victims of Nazis
May 28, 2008 7:53am CST
Germany unveiled a monument to the tens of thousands of homosexuals persecuted under the Nazis, whose laws were used to prosecute gay men for a generation after World War Two. The monument stands opposite the monument to the 6 million European Jews murdered by the Nazis. Nazi authorities ordered the castration of some gay men, and sent thousands more to concentration camps where many were murdered or died from hunger and disease. They are the forgotten and ignored people of the Holocaust. Until 1969, Nazi laws continued to be applied to prosecute homosexuals. And even today in some countries gay people are still not free to be who they are and live in a culture of fear and shame, simply because of who they love. Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit said "The monument consecrated today is a reminder to us of the horrors of the past and draws our attention to the degree of discrimination that currently exists. Great efforts will still need to be undertaken before the sight of two men or women kissing here or in Moscow or elsewhere on the planet is accepted by society in general." I think a reminder like this is necessary to show people how easily something like this could happen again. In areas of the world, atrocities are still taking place but we've become lax as a society and don't stand up for the rights of others. Our complacency will be our downfall, or at the very least the downfall of those being persecuted. What do you think of the monument?
28 May 08
I think the main way to make a difference is to teach our children that being "different" is not wrong. The truth is that there will always be those who think that being different is wrong. We'll never be able to open everyones minds. But, I would like to believe that someday those people will be a minority, and we [v]will[/b] have a better world to live in.
28 May 08
Yes it is good that these forotten people now have a memorial. It is a reminder too that persecution still exists in many countries where the act of love between two adults can still be unlawful. In some cultures it is more acceptable for a man to beat his wife than for two people who love each other to live together in a loving relationship. A cruel amoral straight man can have power to rule over others, but some of the kindest and gentlest of men will not be accepted in the role of religious leader, unless he hides the fact that he has no physical interest in women.