Persecution of “Others” in WWII

 

A popular Holocaust image of a frightened “Jewish” girl who was, in fact, Roma.

 

This image serves as a reminder that many non-Aryans and other minority groups were persecuted during the Holocaust. The terror was not limited to the Jewish people, though neither should their pain be diminished in importance. LGBT+, Roma, unwed expectant mothers, Jewish peoples, and others were all subject to the cruelty and horror of the Nazis’ persecution. This deserves to be acknowledged just as frequently as the fact that the swastika was first a religious symbol corrupted for misuse by bigots and fear-mongers.

“All men and all races are children of God; all without distinction. Those who are Gypsies, Black, European, or Aryan all have the same rights (…) for this reason, the Catholic Church had always condemned, and continues to condemn, all injustice and all violence committed in the name of theories of class, race, or nationality. It is not permissible to persecute Gypsies or Jews because they are thought to be an inferior race. We affirm then that all peoples and races descend from God. In fact, there exists but one race…The members of this race can be white or black, they can be separated by oceans or live on the opposing poles, [but] they remain first and foremost the race created by God, according to the precepts of natural law and positive Divine law as it is written in the hearts and minds of humans or revealed by Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Sovereign of all peoples.”

~ Aloysius Viktor Stepinac