Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Usually I’m a “One Remembrance at a Time” Kind of Guy

But today I’m in a quandary. April 25th is National Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom Hashoah). It’s a day when I like to reflect on the birth of my only niece Lily.

It’s not my fault that Yom Hashoah happens to fall on my niece’s birthday this year. So what to do? I feel obligated to recognize both the atrocities of the holocaust and the wonderful day that Lily was brought into the world.

I think that I’ve come up with a great solution.

10 Ways That My Niece Lily is Better than the Holocaust

1. During the Holocaust, the Germans under the command of Adolph Hitler sanctioned and carried out the mass murder of approximately 6 million Jews (about 2 out of every 3 European Jews), tens of thousands of Roma (or Gypsies), about 200,000 mentally and physically disabled persons, lots and lots of Polish and Soviet citizens and a bunch of homosexuals.

Lily has never done any of that horrible stuff. In fact, my niece is a very accepting little girl. She never met a gay disabled communist Gypsy Jew she didn’t like. (And trust me, knowing her mother’s friends; she’s probably met more than a few)

2. The term “Holocaust” is Greek in origin and means “sacrifice by fire.” Not a very pleasant word really.

The name Lily means “A type of flower native to the northern temperate regions. Their range in the Old World extends across much of Europe, the north Mediterranean, across most of Asia to Japan, south to the Nilgiri mountains in India, and south to the Philippines. In the New World they extend from southern Canada through much of the United States. A few species formerly included within this genus have now been placed in other genera.”

How pretty is that huh? Pretty and educational.

3. The Holocaust was Hitler’s infinitesimally and horrifically asinine plan to create a master race by weeding out – by murder – those people which he thought were “undesirable.”

Lily would never come up with such a horrible, brutal and juvenile plan. She’s much too smart for that. Her plan for forming master race might include something more tolerant and elegant like crossbreeding people with animals, genetically engineering a race of beings with the brain capacity of a human and the ability to groom themselves like a dog.

Sure, that’s still pretty grotesque, but apart from having to dispose of the inevitable “missteps” along the way, it would be virtually bloodless – and therefore better.

4. Holocaust bad.

Lily good.

5. Well…Lily’s simply better than the Holocaust, can’t we agree and just leave it at that? We don’t really need 10 reasons do we? I didn’t think so.

So to sum up, I was thinking of a clever way to incorporate both remembrances into one simple message. But “Let us never forget Lily’s birthday lest we repeat the horrors of the past” didn’t have quite the impact that I was looking for.

So, never forget the Holocaust.

And Happy Birthday, Lily! You’re the greatest niece an uncle could ever ask for!

Fun Fact: I was kicking around on the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum web site and I spotted this article: “United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Denounces Continuing Holocaust Denial in Iran.”

Hmmm. Really? Who would have thunk that the national museum dedicated to the Holocaust would take issue with those who stupidly claim that the Holocaust never took place? Weird.

And seriously, the “president” of Iran is a moron. I just wanted to put that out there. Now that’s news.

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