27th January is Holocaust Memorial Day
Published: 22 January 2017 Tags: holocaust, lgbt, human rights By John Walding
Over seventy years ago, the LGBT community was among those who were persecuted and imprisoned en masse for their sexual orientation and gender identity under Paragraph 175 of the German Penal code during the Nazi regime.
Today, as we all know even though such lessons from history should teach us how to avoid such atrocities we are still faced with inequalities, discrimination, prejudice and persecution in the 21st century.
With human rights far from universal and with existing hard won equalities currently under threat around the world, remembering the victims of the Holocaust is as important now as it ever was.
Holocaust Memorial Day marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp. It is a chance for all of us to remember the millions of people murdered in the Holocaust, under Nazi Persecution and in subsequent genocides around the world.
Holocaust Memorial Day helps us to learn the lessons of the past and to recognise that genocide does not just take place on its own; it is a steady process which can begin if discrimination, racism and hatred are not checked and prevented.
In recent years the language of hatred and exclusion reminds us that there is still much to do to create a safer future and Holocaust Memorial Day is an opportunity to start this process.
HMD Trust - LGBT resource - The Nazis persecuted anyone who did not fit in to their ideal. This resource sheet from 2015 highlights the suffering experienced under the Nazis, and that LGBT people still experience today. http://bit.ly/1M0UV1F
Triangles - Witnesses of the Holocaust - A short and powerful film that shines a light on a broader community and culture of the Holocaust. In the film victims and survivors tell their stories in their own words. https://vimeo.com/83838044
Early LGBTIQ Human Rights - Magnus Hirschfield was a German Sexologist in the early 20th Century known as the "Einstein of Sex". Working with surgeons in Berlin through his "Institute for Sexual Science and becoming a primary target for Hitler and the Nazi Party. http://bit.ly/2khgTJ6
Schwules (Gay) Museum - If you are ever in Berlin, one of the world’s largest and most significant institutions for archiving, researching and communicating the history and culture of LGBTIQ communities can be found at the Schwules museum. http://www.schwulesmuseum.de/en/news/
For more information on Holocaust Memorial Day go to: http://www.hmd.org.uk