Imagine being forced to wear a yellow Holocaust star, a bright badge of shame. It was intended to mark and humiliate Jews in the World War II era. This identifier created vulnerability and made a target of Jews of both genders in Germany and throughout Europe, as you can see in the image below. Two innocent women wear the badge, possibly a mother and daughter, and I can see the concern on their faces.
As a Jew, I shudder when I put myself in these victims’ shoes. Being forced to wear an emblem that endangered oneself was a form of psychological torture, I’m sure. It opened people up to acts of terror. If a Jew stepped outside without wearing a yellow Holocaust star (based on the Star of David), they faced fines, prison, beatings, and even murder. I mention this in my book, Never Again MEANS Never Again, aptly titled so that we remain vigilant. History has a habit of repeating itself.
Further Implications of the Yellow Holocaust Star
It wasn’t just a reminder that Jews were considered second-class citizens. The badge became a mark that set citizens up for kidnapping, forced labor, enslavement, and death.
According to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:
“Nazi officials implemented the Jewish badge (an identifying badge to mark Jews) between 1939 and 1945. They did so in a systematic manner, as a prelude to deporting Jews to ghettos and killing centers in German-occupied eastern Europe.”
“When Nazi officials implemented the Jewish badge between 1939 and 1945, they did so in an intensified, systematic manner, as a prelude to deporting Jews to ghettos and killing centers in German-occupied eastern Europe.”
I hope you’ll join me in my efforts to push back against antisemitism and racism in all its forms. Humankind can and will do better if we proactively stand up against today’s online and physical attacks. That is the purpose of my book, website, blog, and forum.