by Patrick Appel
Stephen Budiansky goes a little far here, but he's right that excessive memorialization has consequences:
It is hard in this age of endless memorialization to even express this view without sounding callous: but Londoners did not turn their entire city into a "hallowed ground" or a shrine for the dead or a monument to British victimhood. They rebuilt, they went on, they rightly saw that the truest memorial to the dead was to show the Nazis that their city would rise again as if the Nazis had never existed on the face of the earth. I have always felt a deep discomfort similarly with the entire holocaust-memorial and holocaust-study industry. As a Jew, I hate the idea that the defining fact of my people's entire history should be what the fucking Nazis did to us.There is a great Spanish proverb: olvidar la injuria es la mejor venganza: to forget an insult is the greatest revenge.
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