“I did not understand why I was there…”
-Holocaust Survivor Irving Roth
Roth took a pause after uttering the most impactful statement of the night. The room filled with a heavy, somber silence. To many of us the Holocaust was a tragic event that we nonetheless compartmentalize into fleeting memories of history lectures about Adolf Hitler and World War 2. Roth’s speech was a wake up call. Irving Roth’s testimony personalized the atrocity in our hearts. He transformed into a familiar boy who enjoyed school, a pretty girl and sweets. The horrors of Auschwitz unfathomable in the mind of a child.
Forcing ourselves into his shoes, Roth’s confusion became our own as he experienced the escalating injustices fostered by Nazi popularized anti-Semitism. It started small with childish bullying and broken friendships. Then the government seizure and Aryanization of private property violated the rights of business owners like his father. With Hitler elected chancellor, labor camps were established for “enemies of the state.” Individual rights and human life were disregarded behind barbed wire, away from the public eye.
Over 500 physical and 1,200 online attendees.
That’s where we come in. We, the people, are responsible for exposing injustice and defending freedom on a global scale. It is our honor to uphold the ideals of liberty and individual rights. In doing so we monitor not only those in power, but ourselves.
“The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended.” – Frédéric Bastiat
Thank you to Young Americans for Liberty and Christians United for Israel for funding and organizing this event. As a Students For Liberty Campus Coordinator, I was privileged to be a part of an event that reached over five hundred people. To Mister Irving Roth, my respect for you is impossible to express in words. Not only have you endured so much pain in your lifetime, but you’ve used it to educate and inspire people like me through your book, Bondi’s Brother, and speaking engagements. Your legacy lives on in those who defend the oppressed.
Sincerely and For Liberty,