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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (April 17, 1996)
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-- -j April 17, 1996
Eva Sartori lights a candle in honor of Holocaust victims Tuesday night at the State Capitol. The annual Nebraska
Holocaust Commemoration was attended by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel.
Holocaust ceremony remembers victims; liberators
By Todd Anderson
A solemn crowd of400 contemplated the
atrocities of the Holocaust, remembering its
survivors and their liberators, during the
Nebraska Holocaust Commemoration cer
emony Tuesday night.
The ceremony in the Nebraska State Capi
tol rotunda brought together representatives
from government and the community to speak
about the importance of remembering the
Holocaust and preventing hate and aggres
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiescl,
a Holocaust survivor, was on hand for the
ceremony. Wiesel spoke Tuesday afternoon
Several public officials and community
leaders including Lincoln Mayor Mike
Johanns, Lt. Gov. Kim Robak, Rabbi Stanley
Rosenbaum, and state Sen. La Von Crosby of
Lincoln, delivered messages about the im
portance of fighting tyranny and intolerance
to prevent the atrocities of the Holocaust
from ever happening again.
Several survivors and children of Holo
caust survivors lit candles in remembrance
Candles were also lit in remembrance of
the liberators and rescuers of concentration
camp prisoners. Following a performance
by the Irving Middle School Choir, Sybil
Milton, senior historian for the U.S. Holo
caust Research Institute in Washington, D.C.,
delivered the commemoration address.
Milton said the victims of concentration
camps left behind “ideas inscribed in words
and pictures” to help future generations re
member the Holocaust.
“The human spirit could and did survive
the ultimate evil.... They believed the world
would indeed someday be a better place.”
But, she said, “old racial hatreds seem to
re-appear throughout Europe.”
She cited evidence of genocide in the
former Yugoslavia and warned of those who
try to prove that the Holocaust never hap
“The record of the (Nuremberg) trials
will forever disprove those who attempt to
deny Nazi crimes,” she said.
The ceremony was sponsored by the Lin
coln Interfaith Council, the Office of the
Governor of Nebraska, the Office of the
Mayor of Lincoln, the Jewish Federation of
Lincoln, and Community Relations Com
mittee of the Anti-Defamation League.
Marcia Kushner, chairwoman of the co
ordinating committee, said it was important
that the supporters were a diverse group.
She also said it was important that the
ceremony was held in the Capitol. “It says
that we as a state consider this an important
commemoration,” she said.
She said it was important for parents to
teach their children about the Holocaust be
cause members of the generation who expe
rienced the atrocities will not be around
“They are our real link,” she said.
She said it was important for individuals
to be alert to acts of hatred within their own
groups and to speak out when incidents oc
Fanaticism can kill, Nobel winner says
By Julie Sobczyk
The thought process behind fanaticism
can turn humans into killers, Nobel Peace
Prize winner Elie Wiesel told an overflow
ing crowd at UNL on Tuesday afternoon.
In his speech, “The Seduction and Dan
ger of Fanaticism,” Wiesel said when reli
gious people went beyond a certain point,
they could become fanatics.
“What is that limit?” he said. “When he
believes ‘Only I can hear God, have spoken
to God and nobody else can,’ he talks a lot of
Wiesel’s speech drew the largest crowd
in the eight-year history of the E.N. Thomp
son Forum on World Issues, filling the Lied
Center for Performing Arts to capacity. Many
people were turned away at the door and
bused to East Campus to see the speech
“Fanatics believe they have received or
ders to speak in God’s name,” Wiesel said.
“Who gave them that right? How many were
killed in the name of God? How many hu
mans were shamed and tortured in the name
of the love of God?”
Fanatics believe they are superior, Wiesel
said, and with the superiority comes knowl
“That knowledge — even though it is
distorted — gives them power. Given the
power, they are dangerous.”
Power is what drives fanatics, Wiesel
said, and leads to dangerous consequences.
“Genocide is a result of fanaticism. For
me, it is an insolvable problem,” he said.
Wiesel saw the actions of fanatics first
hand. When he was 15 years old, he was
deported to a Nazi concentration camp with
his family. His mother and sister died there.
Wiesel later wrote about his experiences
in die concentration camps in “Night” and
subsequent'writings. He won the Nobel Peace
Prize in 1986.
“‘Hate’ is the key word in genocide in our
century. The idea is to analyze hatred. What
is it that makes humans hate one another?”
Wiesel said he had struggled with many
See WIESEL on 3
By Ted Taylor
Nebraskans now have a “valid option” to the
citizen petitions on the November ballot, Gov.
Ben Nelson said as he signed the Nebraska
Legislature s property tax
relief package Tuesday.
Nelson was joined at the
ceremony by Revenue Com
mittee Chairman Sen. Jerome
Warner of Waverly.
The bills in the package
• LB1114, which limits
property tax levies on local
governments, starting in
• LB299, which limits local government
spending for the two years before the levies,
• LB 1177, which reallocates state aid to low
• LB 1085, which provides lor and encour
ages local governments to merge or consolidate
to become more cost-efficient.
Many said there was pressure on the Legis
lature to pass the package to head off voter
anger. Three citizen petitions, ranging in ac
tions from abandoning the property tax system
to capping levy limits. —
With Warner’s leadership, Nelson said, the
Legislature was able to pass a package of bills
that he believed would start the state on the road
to real property tax relief.
But Nelson said the package’s two-year
implementation gap should case the public’s
perception that the proposal would harm schools.
“Education and other services do not have to
be hurt in this process,” he said. “Phasing in this
plan will allow counties, cities and school dis
tricts to look at better ways of doing business.”
Nelson said the property tax debate in the
state over the last two years had led to a more
“People today, better than at any other time,
are understanding the underlying factors to prop
erty taxes, spending.”
Nelson said the passage of the package also
lessened the concern he had that the public may
choose the citizen petitions.
“I’m not as concerned as I would have been
had the Legislature not passed the property tax
package,” he said. “I don’t think the petitions
are necessary now.”
MTV bus to
get out vote
at UNL today
By Ted Taylor
A long, loudly painted bus will park itsel f on
Broyhill plaza today. But instead of picking up
people, it will be dropping off a message —
The bus, the MTV “Choose or Lose” bus,
has been traveling across the country since mid
January trying to get college students to vote.
And the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is
the 44th stop along the way.
Shannon Jacobs, a 1994 UNL graduate and
part of the “Choose or Lose” bus management
team, said turnout in the 1992 presidential elec
tion was a sign of things to come.
“In ’ 92, young people really showed up at the
polls, and we are hoping they do it again,” she
said. “I hope they realize that young people
have a strong voice.”
In that election, 43 percent of the 18- to 24
year-olds registered to vote went to the polls.
Jacobs said she hoped the presence of the
See BUS on 3
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