Do Your Homework First…

Evenin’ all! A slightly rhetorical question for you all.  What is “research” these days?  Let’s head to our local pub and meet our Kneipenprofessor.

person holding glass filled with liqour

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Pub Expert:

I’ve been researching this topic.

Other person:

Oh, you mean you wrote a paper on the subject citing at least 10-15 reputable sources, summarising all the current thinking, stating your own hypothesis and then introducing the original work you did in the attempt to confirm or disprove this hypothesis before reaching a conclusion and giving further possible directions for study, after which you got it published in a reputable journal in the field and peer-reviewed?

Pub Expert:

Er, no, I looked at some websites that I agree with.

smartphone outside hiking technology

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This afternoon I was drinking coffee with fellow members of church, when Holocaust Memorial Day was mentioned.

As soon as I mentioned the day, Billy butted in:

Oh, that’s only about the Jews 1933-1945.

My blood pressure immediately doubled.  Billy has once again engaged mouth before brain.  Yet again…

Sharp intake of breath.

G in G:

No, it’s not.  It’s also about holocausts and genocides in ex-Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Tibet, Burma and many other conflicts.

Billy:

It is only about the Jews.  I’ve been researching this topic for twenty years.

G in G:

With respect [A British expression meaning, “I consider you to be a complete and total idiot”] I visited Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1978.  I also listened to a radio interview with the chair of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust this morning.

Billy:

Oh.

I am then reminded of the English barrister, F E Smith, and his famous exchange with a judge.

Judge: I’ve listened to you for an hour and I’m none the wiser.

Smith: None the wiser, perhaps, My Lord, but certainly better informed.

blur close up focus gavel

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This evening I decided to send out an email to the three people who were in that discussion.

****

Good evening all

Following on from this afternoon’s discussion in the Meeting Room concerning the purpose of Holocaust Memorial Day, I thought it prudent to share some important facts.

  1. The day is by no means only about the murder of German and European Jews under Nazism.  Please refer to the Memorial Day Trust’s link: https://www.hmd.org.uk/what-is-holocaust-memorial-day/
  2. As you can see, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust states explicitly: “Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT) encourages remembrance in a world scarred by genocide. We promote and support Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) – the international day on 27 January to remember the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust, the millions of people killed under Nazi Persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.”  (My emphasis in italics.)
  3. The key point to note here is that history repeats itself, with human beings being murdered for being the “wrong” ethnic background, not just for being Jewish, but also for being Roma, Hutu, Tutsi, Croat/Bosniak/Serb (in the former Yugoslavia conflicts of the early 1990s), Rohinga, Tibetan, Uighur, etc.
  4. On a very personal note, I myself visited Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1978.  Ever since then, I have studied genocide in conflicts.  Further, in the first half of the 90’s, my father worked for British Direct Aid in former Yugoslavia and in Rwanda (during and in the aftemath of both conflicts, albeit not at the peak of the former conflict).
  5. Former comrades of mine from the British Army’s Intelligence Corps have told me about carrying out war crime investigations and finding mass graves that contained multiple layers from more than one conflict: 1990’s civil war, Second World War, possibly more.
  6. In conclusion, this is why Holocaust Memorial Day exists: namely, to echo the sentiments of Remembrance Day – Lest we forget.  Sadly, and to our eternal shame before God, we humans forget history time and time again.

I’m sorry I feel it necessary to write a serious email this evening, but I do consider it essential to explain what this day is all about, and also why I feel so strongly about the subject.

Finally, let us all please pray for peace on God’s earth this week.

Yours in Christ,

Ginge in Germany

****

Have a well-informed day, won’t you!

woman in black long sleeved looking for books in library

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Scrapbook: Non-News Story

It’s been a quiet autumn night, so besides:

  • Alphabetising my book collection
  • Clipping my toenails
  • Reorganising my stationery box
  • Reading umpteen Wkipedia articles on the chemical content of planet Pluto

I decided to have a look through my scrapbooks.  Among the postcards, village church service sheets, train tickets and various till receipts, I found this excellent local newspaper non-news story from the Darlington and Stockton Times.  “Not our department” seems to be the name of the game.  Enjoy!

Non-News.jpg

Have a newsworthy day, won’t you!

Your Friday Joke

The Reverend Doctor Ian Paisley was a real firebrand preacher and politician in the 1970’s.  However he later calmed down and was part of the peace process in Northern Ireland.

He even became a doting grandfather.  One Christmas he even bought his pet dog a wee rubber ball.  Every time it bounced off the ground, it went:

Boyne!  Boyne!  Boyne!

paisley.jpg

Have a bouncy day, won’t you!

Pun, Pun, Pun!

I like listening to BBC Radio Tees’ breakfast show.  They run a headline competition every weekday.  I won once.  Now, in a similar vein, here’s an article I saw last week.

Girl pours grandfather’s ashes into cookies which she had baked.

Here are all the puns that the Brits wrote with true dark humour about this case.

  • Instead of biscuits, she could have got some potatoes and made ash browns.
  • Her classmates said the cookies were not soft enough: they were, in fact, bone-dry.
  • I’m not sure the cookies had a full-bodied flavour.
  • She said she only wanted to urn some money by selling these cookies.
  • She took full responsibility for her action. It was hearse, and hearse alone.
  • She’s been told not to do it again. But I suspect she cadaver ‘nother try.
  • Grandma had asked her, “What do you make of Grandad then?” She knew exactly what…
  • That just takes the biscuit.Seems these cookies are going to be marketed by Huntley Embalmer.
  • When the people eating these cookies found out, they were “coffin” all over the place.
  • I hear she made chocolate bour-bone biscuits.
  • She needs to have a wreath-think about her life choices.
  • She could also have made a pyre (pie) or two.
  • Her classmates should have washed the cookies down with a bier or two.
  • But really she should not have taken the cookies “inter” school.
  • She’s in trouble with the law. Someone has called the corpse.
  • Next time she can make chocolate crem cakes.
  • It’s lovely when children bake with their grandparents.
  • What happened next…. Remains to be seen

One lady commented:

I find nothing funny in it. In fact – disgusting.
Girl needs some psychiatric help – and of course some legal action too.

To which a wag replied:

Definitely not funny at all.  I mean, she didn’t even mix any ginger or nutmeg into the cookie mix.  Shameful!

Putting the “fun” into “funeral.”

Have a punny day, won’t you!

 

 

Tag der Deutschen Einheit

Tomorrow is Tag der Deutschen Einheit (Day of German Unity).

Over forty years ago, in the summer of 1978, I remember standing up in the Harz Mountains watching the GDR border guards rebuilding the fence and thinking and saying to the late Sunray, “The GDR will still be there when I’m gone.”

Then October 1989 happened, and the rest is, well, literally history.

mauerfall

Have a unified day, won’t you!