“Those who do not remember the past [or are never taught it] are condemned to repeat it.” ~ George Satayana
In Ahmedabad, a city of 5.5 million people in Gujarat, India, a small clothing store recently decided to open its doors to the public. There is one “small” problem …
Naturally, Jewish communities, along with several nations, have condemned the use of the name for the store and it is very likely the store will either go out of business or the owner will change its name.
Taking the owner at his word when he says he didn’t know who Hitler was, brings me back to the title of this post. When are we going to learn that our history is vitally important to our future? And, is ignorance a justifiable excuse for this type of incident in the “Information Age”? It’s obvious Mr. Shah had access to the internet and should have been able to learn who Hitler was. It’s also not like WWII was some small battle between nations no one ever heard of. In fact, India declared war on Nazi, Germany two full years prior to America declaring war.
There has been, in my opinion, as well as others, a concerted effort, it seems, to minimize the Holocaust, the Nazi movement, or Hitler, himself. While we condemn Mr. Shah’s ignorance on the subject, we should also make a note to not ignore the insidious effect of denying the past. We should also not ignore those groups that try to push that denial upon the rest of us.