Once upon a horrific time … 50 million human lives perished because of unchecked hatred against the Jews. This time was only 70 some years ago. And here we are again … a world now consumed with toxins against Jews – toxic words, images, and actions. Sadly, I know them personally all too well.
My beloved departed Father, Al Katz, began his seven years of slave labor for the Nazis on Kristallnacht, November 9, 1938, in Hannover, Germany, where my Grandfather, Louis Katz, a decorated WWI German-Jewish war hero was kidnapped from his home and brutalized in a concentration camp. Later, he and my Grandmother, Berta, my Uncle, Arthur Werner, and multiple other immediate family members were systematically tortured and obliterated by the relentless Nazi murder machine, which did not stop its hideous mission of Jewish genocide until the world, with Divine help, ended the madness.
Hatred never stops of its own accord. It must be obliterated to end its obliteration of human lives upon lives upon lives….
In gorgeous Sarasota-Manatee, Florida, on the Divinely-aesthetic Gulf of Mexico, hatred against Jews is rapidly proliferating, from “Kick-a Jew Day” down the coast a few years ago to forced evictions of a Zionist Jewish family from its home and its office both.
When was the last time you entered a Jewish office where the flag of Israel is displayed at all times along with large framed pictures of Jerusalem on its walls? This is the AL KATZ Center office in downtown Sarasota. The family being evicted from this office and its home in a nearby city is my own. In July, we were abruptly told that “Under no circumstances will we rent to you,” despite our record of consistently-amicable interactions with the owners of the office building for the prior two years, since the Center opened its doors. I looked straight at the owner and said, “This is anti-Semitism.”
At my Father’s condominium complex, where we stay, in Bradenton, the pervasive climate of anti-Semitism has intensified over the years. It is best conveyed by the written words of a resident at Heritage Village West, located at 66th Street and Cortez, who proudly stated in emails to me just prior to the Jewish New Year:
… don’t give me any of this holocaust survivor stuff.
I don’t want to hear it. My ancestors were Polish and and in the beginning of WWll felt the wrath of persecution and they were lucky enough to have been able to flee tyranny and find freedom on our shores, but they didn’t make a big deal about it, they just started new lives and went on about their business. I do feel emotionally connected to those who lost their lives under the Nazi’s because many of the victims could have been my relatives.
??? These men and women [Holocaust Survivors] led their lives and now that it’s coming to an end you want to pretend that there is more for them? Let them be and let them greet their [M]aker..Not to be crass, but if anyone of these survivors, most in their 90’s has any hope of leading any sort of life beyond bedpans and feeding tubes, let them go so they can be one with the [L-rd] [A]lmighty.
Be warned, I’ll be keeping an eye on you. The last thing you want to do is make an enemy of me….
By the way, you make yourselves look foolish with this survivor crap.
We are the only Jews at Heritage Village West and, as such, we are ostracized and targeted year after year.
In this year alone, our yard and property outside were vandalized on Passover, with many plants uprooted and strewn across the yard and the sprinkler system severed. A trash can was tossed into the yard as well. All of the vandalism occurred in daylight during working hours next door to the condominium office and pool and adjacent to the residences of two Board members; yet, no one stopped the glaring crimes against Jewish property.
Just before Rosh HaShonah, besides the hate mail we had received from a resident at Heritage Village West, two trash cans were thrown into our yard, where they remained for over two weeks, as two of the Heritage Village West Board members living adjacent to us walked by them each day.
To top off its previous anti-Semitic acts before Rosh HaShonah, Heritage Village West by its attorneys from Becker & Poliakoff filed, on the first day of Rosh HaShonah, legal action against its only Jewish family in order to remove us from its borders.
Again, hatred will never obliterate itself, but who will help this family this time?
Silence has enormous consequences to society…. It has not too long ago cost the world 50 million lives, and then too, it all began with hate words and actions left unchecked by neighbors, friends, colleagues, and officials who watched passively as bystanders to verbal and physical violence that eventually enflamed the world for naught.