Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade September 2001

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Moral indifference. I suppose this statement can have many meanings, but to me it means someone knows something they are doing is wrong but they do not care if it is right or wrong they still go through with it. I feel this is one of the main reasons why the horrible, terrifying period called the Holocaust happened and lasted so long. There were thousands of Americans, Germans, and other Europeans who knew of all the horrific torturing and executions of Jews at the death camps, but still no one said anything and no one stopped the Nazi's from completely taking over the lives of many Jews. I think Reverend Martin Niemoller words really summarize moral indifference because at the end of his quote he said, "then they came for me and there was no one left to speak up". There was no one left because when the Germans came for the communists, Jews, trade unionist, and Catholics he or know one else spoke up or did anything to stop them.

So, there was no one left to speak up for him. If he would have done what was right (stop the Germans form taking everyone else) then there would have been someone there to stop them from taking him. This happens quite often because people think why should they risk their own lives by trying to stop something bad from happening to someone else. Elie Wiesel was opposed to moral indifference and he thought someone should have stopped the German Nazi's far before the Holocaust turned ugly. If all the Jews and other people during the Holocaust did what was right and stood up for themselves, Hitler might not have become as powerful as he did. But, the disgusting man he was, Hitler put everyone is sort of a mind trap, and they felt they had to go along with him and that there was no way out.

"Please help me to learn, though the learning may hurt, not to run form the task but to choose and then live---for the choice that I make shows how much I can give". This quote is from a prayer book and I think it is similar to the concept of moral indifference. In the quote I think of the "learning" as living up to your morals and doing what is right before you make mistakes that will hurt you and others around you. An example of this would be during the Holocaust when people knew what terrible things were going on but still did not try to stop it. The quote says that you have to do what is right even though it may hurt , and during the Holocaust if someone spoke up they would have probably been killed. But, the point is that even if there is hurt involved you should not run from the task, but choose the right thing to do and then live on it. So , I think moral indifference should really be taken into consideration in all situations because not acting on something such as standing up for Jews during the Holocaust, can lead to deathly consequences and a period in history and excruciatingly disgusting as the Holocaust.