Shawn Harding
Founder of The Holocaust Blueprint

Opening the Eyes of the Blind

Almost every day for the last three years I have seen an article about acts of anti-Semitism or racial hatred on social media or in the news. Cynically one cannot help but wonder if the world is cascading back into its deep dark side that we have witnessed time and time again. However, our reference of those who perpetrate in such time is that of a ‘monster,’ but are they monsters? We categorize them this way, and that removes the humanity from that person. They are a human being who committed significant atrocities against other human beings, and to categorize them as anything but that is to unjustly explain away the cruelty that humanity can execute.

Being in the field of education has given me a unique role in fighting against hatred in all forms, and it has also given me the perspective to understand how best to address such ignorance that seems to have come back out from the shadows it once laid latent. I am tasked as an educator to open the eyes of the blind – to give vision to those whose vision has not reached the threshold of humanity. Humanity – the grouping of human beings regardless of the color of the skin, the religion they practice, or the mistakes they have made.

The beauty of life is often overlooked by the moments of corruption that seep into the crevices of society. What can we do to combat these corruptions that are seemingly becoming more frequent by the day? We need to understand the perspectives of humanity and forget the walls that we have built of our own beliefs. There will always be people who are cruel and break free from the norms of society to act out in an egregious way; however, we can help those who are on the line and unsure of which path to take. We can guide them down a path of righteousness and justice versus a path of hate and corruption. Instead of attacking those of which are filled with such qualities we should work to educate them with facts and perspectives that they may have never considered. A rational human being will be willing to hear and understand another perspective if brought to them in an honest and non-aggressive fashion.

In America we often think of greats such as Martin Luther King Jr. who spread messages of love against the grain of cruelty that humanity had perpetuated since antiquity. His message choked the life out of hatred, and in its place it grew a beautiful rose that we continue to see flourish today. The elements attempt to uproot this rose, but the rose has grown deep into the foundation and remains infrangible. We have to continue to plant the seeds of love and compassion and grow them through our words and actions that show such benevolence.

We need to open the eyes of the blind before it is too late.

About the Author
Shawn Harding is the founder of The Holocaust Blueprint. Shawn works to create educational materials for free for users across the world to visualize the Holocaust and obtain information in relation to it.
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