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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Anne Frank and the Stephen Lawrence stabbing

Anne Frank... recognise that name? Today, the full impact of murder most foul, undescribable evil - and knife crime - hit home in a powerful way. Anne was the German Jewish teenager killed by the Nazi machine in World War Two.

I saw the full horror of the Holocaust in just a few words and evocative images of an era not so long ago - when human beings slaughtered others because they were Jewish, or judged to not be as able-bodied as others.

It was shocking and made me angry inside.

You know, Nazis or concentration camp 'staff' threw poison crystals into the shower areas that vaporised into poisonous gas that took up to 20 minutes to kill all in the those showers?

What sort of person, gang - or political faction - does that?

For some reason, I understood why men and women in Britain took up arms to defend our people from such despicable activities by the Nazi regime - and other sick-minded folk, no doubt.

Where was all this revealed? Would you believe it was at an exhibition in my home town, Chichester, in a small corner of quiet place where people can reflect. I saw the history of the Holocaust brought to terrible life alongside the writings and daily activities of a virtually imprisoned Anne Frank.

Then the exhibition confronts some of the worrying social issues confronting modern Britain today including knife crime, gun crime and racism.

A memorial to Stephen Lawrence, the young black teenager believed to have been killed by white racists, rests on one wall of the display, testament to a quite peaceful fight for justice this country has rarely seen.

Anne Frank wrote in her diary: “I want to go on living even after my death!”

And so she is - her thoughts are working their way through the whole world via this exhibition and the Internet.

Anne Frank is a symbol of the millions of innocent children who have been victims of persecution. Anne's life shows us what can happen when prejudice and hatred go unchallenged.

Would you sign up to the Anne Frank Declaration:

Because prejudice and hatred harm us all, will you declare that...?
  • You will stand up for what is right and speak out against what is unfair and wrong.
  • You will try to defend those who cannot defend themselves.
  • You will strive for a world in which our differences will make no difference – a world in which everyone is treated fairly and has an equal chance in life.
To understand more about her, see the Anne Frank Trust UK website - and think about how to challenge the prejudice and reduce hatred perpetuated by sick people who pick up knives and other weapons to destroy, maim or injure other human beings. You'll learn much more by visiting an Anne Frank exhibition - it would be great if someone puts it online.

When I criticise people who are racist, fighters, criminals, I know I make myself a target for potential malice and a vent for their irritation, even violent anger. My being a thorn in the side or a pain in the neck, however, is like nothing compared to a blade in the abdomen or a knife used to carve and disfigure a human body - or face.

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