Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Remembering the Holocaust

As people around the world remember the holocaust, we have been shocked at newly released film footage from the concentration camps.

The documentaries showing this footage spoke a little of how those with disabilities were also targeted - either killed instantly in their euthanasia programmes, or experimented on in grotesque ways.

They were killed because they were deemed to be "damaging to the common good" by the Nazi party.

This is something I never learned in school. I learned that Jews, Gypsies and homosexuals were targeted, but not those with disabilities.

The first to be targeted were apparently children - taken from special schools, their parents lied to about where they were going.

I was horrified to hear the actual figures - over 250,000 people killed, just because of their disability! I know it’s a small percentage in the overall scheme of things, but still - 250,000 people!

It is right that we now have the Genocide Convention. We have laws to protect people groups from genocide and persecution. Never again do we want to see another holocaust, so we need to see, to remember, to never forget.

But from what I can see on the internet, and please correct me if I’m wrong, those with disabilities are not covered by any of these laws or conventions.

If this government decided tomorrow that I was a drain on society and the benefits system, and therefore should be subject to a euthanasia order - I have nothing to protect me.
Ok, so the euthanasia bit wouldn’t happen here, but for my disabled friends in other countries it could, and it appears there is no protection in law for them.

That’s scary.

There are people out there that have a very low view of those with disabilities. Hate crime against ‘the disabled’ is on the increase, even in this country.

As you remember the holocaust, and the attempted genocides since, spare a thought for a people group who remain unprotected: Those with disabilities.

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