United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

I love my family. As much as I love having Caitlin and Tim here, I really loved it when my mom came up for five days. She bought us groceries, cooked dinner, did laundry, fed the baby. Ah, it was nice. My favorite day was when she kept my kids so I could go to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum with Caitlin, Tim, and Ethan.

I had never been the USHMM before, and it was incredible. A terribly sad and poignant tribute to the SIX MILLION Jews who were slaughtered in the Holocaust. I was depressed, thinking about how my children would have been taken from me, and killed. I was grateful, so grateful, to be living in the place and time I do. Indignant, at the genocide that still occurs today. Thoughtful, when it occurred to me that there are approximately six million Mormons living in the U.S., and what it would be like if every Mormon in America were, at first, segregated and humiliated, then later, exterminated. What would we do? What would our friends do?

Later, I mentioned my thoughts about a Mormon massacre to Ethan and he said, “We already were.” I had not made the connection that in 1838 the governor of Missouri issued an extermination order against the Mormons. Women were raped, men murdered, babies left to die in the cold. They were driven from their homes again and again, from Ohio, to Missouri, to Illinois, until they crossed the plains all the way to Utah. Of course, the persecution of the Mormons, a group of then only ten thousand, cannot compare to the scope of the atrocities committed against European Jews, but it definitely gave me something to think about, on a personal level.

After the museum we visited the Freer Art Gallery before hopping on the metro and heading home.


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