Monday, January 26, 2009

Still reading

I finished Hannah's Dream and I also finished Sarah's Key. Sarah's Key is about a chapter in history that I'd never heard about. During WWII, during the Nazi occupation of France, the Jewish people were gathered up and put on trains and sent to Auschwitz. Before they were sent they were kept in the Velodrome d'Hiver, a place that was used for bicycle races. They were kept there, families and many, many children, without food or water or a place to go to the bathroom. Later they would separate all the children from their mothers and let them starve before they were put on the trains. It's not a historical novel but it is based on a true event. It's a horrifying story and one everyone should know about. It's very scary. The thing is, it was the French police who did the round-up of its own French citizens, not Nazi Germans. What is that saying? I must find it.

. . . . It's called "First They Came For" and there are several versions I found. The author was a Protestant (Lutheran) pastor named Martin Niemöller. It gets changed a lot now - corrupted by special interests who insert their own name, but this is one of the originals. I first read it in political science class in my first year of college. I remember it clearly because we walked into class and the teacher had already written it on the chalk board. My teacher called himself an iconoclast. Of course none of us knew what that meant at first. I got an A in that course and an A+ on one of my papers. Everyone needs to take a political science class.

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me--
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

And I'm reading so much more. I'm a voracious reader these past two days!

In homeschooling I picked two stories for current events. The one about how McDonald's had an 80% net profit increase in 2008. Wow! And about Pelosi wanting to put money in the stimulus package for "contraception" to help the economy by having fewer children who need schools and medical care. We discussed the mathematical and accounting terms "net" and "gross" and how dinner time is essential to building a strong family and that we should not feed our children McDonald's as part of a regular diet. Then I showed him a photo of Pelosi and asked him who she was and he knew her full name. Hmmm. He's listening more than I thought he was.

I have a terrible zit on my chin. My husband asked why am I 49 and getting zit. That's a question all right. And I have one on the side of my nose that doesn't show, but it hurts, and one is thinking about popping out right on the end of my nose. If it does, I must commit hari-kiri, or, stay in the house till it goes away. I'm so bummed.

For the sad and beyond self-vanity news of the day though, we learned that on Sunday, in the wee hours of the morn, a person in a very high place in the parks system where we work was arrested on a DWI, which in California is called a DUI, but it's the same thing. I am so sad for her. I pray she doesn't lose her job.

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