Two images/moments from Schindler’s List: the movie is in black and white with one exception–why do you think that might be?

A simple dusk, blood red coat moving through the crowd, then the coat flung onto an anonymous ash heap. The only bit of color in the stark, yet stirring film that is “Schindler’s List,” originally titled, I believe, “Schindler’s Ark.”

Moment number two: a child jeers at a man passing by, as he’s shuttled along like cattle to some horrible death–the man proceeds with calm serenity in his heart.

The child yells out, “JEW!” His mouth twisted in hatred at the unknown, the unfamiliar, the uncomfortable. How easy for that child to tag along with the angry crowd rather than calm his inner anger at that which he doesn’t understand. Taking an innocuous word, and filling it with venom. How long before the Jewish people were again able to call themselves, JEWS, without cringing in shame? People politely, in politically correct terms, referring to “the Jewish people, the Jewish experience,” but as the saying goes, “Until you’ve walked a mile in my shoes. . .”

How then to avoid slamming hate back in the face of hate, how to respond with serenity, even with empathy, but without bowing our heads in shame. We have all been shamed enough, all of us, all too long–Jews, Christians, Muslims, Agnostics, Buddhists, Taoists. . .The list goes on ad infinitum. Will we live in shame and fear, or will we “rise to the occasion,” rise to that which is required of us. As children of God, we do not grovel.

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