Jewish Journal

Congress’ Muslim rep honors Yom HaShoah

by Brad A. Greenberg

April 13, 2010 | 3:57 pm

Maybe they’re confused or just a little behind the times in Washington—I sure hope not, but that would explain why today I received several emails from U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison regarding his remarks for Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Yom HaShoah was yesterday. But Ellison is Muslim, and I’d venture that the overwhelming majority of American Jews didn’t know the annual holiday had already passed. (Holocaust fatigue?) Here’s what Ellison had to say:

Yom Hashoah marks the day in which we remember the six million Jews who lost their lives during World War II.

We honor all those who died and we remember all those who lived to tell the painful story of this dark chapter in history. We also mourn our collective failure to prevent such a horrific tragedy. It is a painful lesson of the dangers of inaction and we remind ourselves that we must never be complacent in the face of genocide, xenophobia, intolerance, and hatred.

We also take pause to honor those of all faiths and nationalities that stood up and sacrificed their lives to protect the innocent.

As we remember those who were killed in the Holocaust, we must also commit ourselves to combat the same discrimination that lives on today. From anti-Semitism to racism, there is no justification for bigotry of any kind.

I am committed to working for mutual respect and understanding of all faiths.  I firmly believe that we cannot advance justice and peace if we deny the suffering of others or refuse to learn the lessons of history.

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