There is One in Every Crowd: Thank Goodness!



I came across this on the Face Book. It has toned my day and spoke so much to me on a personal and human level.
Nazi NOT!

Here is the description as it appears on the Face Book:
Ordinary people. The courage to say no.

The photo was taken in Hamburg in 1936, during the celebrations for the launch of a ship. In the crowed, one person refuses to raise his arm to give the Nazi salute. The man was August Landmesser. He had already been in trouble with the authorities, having been sentenced to two years hard labour for marrying a Jewish woman.
We know little else about August Landmesser, except that he had two children. By pure chance, one of his children recognized her father in this photo when it was published in a German newspaper in 1991. How proud she must have been in that moment.

Just as a historical piece this is stunning. Amid the rabid, or at least compunction-ed, crowd of German citizens, offering their Sieg Hiel to the Furor, is the guy, right there in the circle. His obvious refusal to make the hand salute is utter awesomeness, an act that no Che Gueverra T-Shirt or Guy Fawkes mask could ever top. Yet what I find more striking is the look on his face. I am sure I am reading way too much into it and perhaps this was one of those Obama moments where they take a snapshot of him and then claim it is something it is entirely not. The human inside me relishes this as perhaps one of the great unseen examples of human resistance and pride.

Whenever old Nazi footage is seen, the pageantry and the insistent goose stepping in the street you assume that 100% of the population was complicit in all the Derry do that followed. It feels good to know, and I am sure there were many more (I have seen Valkyrie OK), who opposed Hitler and his regime. It just feels so good to see this guy, with a look almost like one of the three stooges, not having any of it.

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