February 01, 2011

Holocaust Memorial, Legion of Honor, S.F.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

My first San Francisco stop on Sunday was at the Holocaust Memorial near the Legion of Honor.   And although every time I visit my gut feels wrenched, I felt it was the right place for me to be.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Normally I question, fret, and whine about our own government; but amidst the memorial I began to question not Nazi Germany, but myself.   Although I try (maybe not hard enough at times) to be compassionate towards others, I started wondering if, had I been under Hitler's control, would I be capable of aiding such horrible and unspeakable crimes against humanity.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

The only honest answer I could come up was; "I'm not sure".   I have claimed so many times to be a good person, but deep down I know the truth.   I am subject to the same frailties that plague us all.   For me it is a disturbing realization.   I suppose all I can do is try my best in this moment. Please catch me when I fall.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

The Legion of Honor pays homage to our dead from World War I.   It's filled with priceless art and antiquities -- even a Monet over there and a Picasso over here.   And it has more than it's share of religious art going back to the 15th and 16th centuries -- I personally find most of it rather oppressive.   For my tastes, the Rodin sculptures is the best part of the museum -- it's probably time for me to indulge in another visit.

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Hooly said...

Your introspection -- well said and thank you. You speak for us all.

Scott Law said...

Wow, what poignant statues. They've certainly found an excellent way to make their point. Nice job Donald.

photowannabe said...

Thought provoking statues made even more so on the wet and muddy day.
Thank you for sharing yourself with us.

Janie said...

Sort of takes your breath away when first appearing here on the screen! Glad you attended the event. Great photos.

Tomate Farcie said...

Well, I'm a member so let me know if you want to get in as a guest. I haven't been in ages and it's high time I check out this place again (and again).

The photo of the memorial in the rain is amazing. I saw it in full sunshine and it doesn't speak to you the same as when you see it like that, with the rain and the mud and the shapes just laying there. Well done, again.

I mean it about the museum. Any time (well my membership is good through the summer)

Tomate Farcie said...

About what you said in your post, I think you are correct, none of us really know how we would react in a life-or-death situation.

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