Ron Rosenbaum writes in Slate.com that if “The Reader” wins the Academy Award for the Best Picture, then it would strengthen the case for Holocaust deniers:
This is a film whose essential metaphorical thrust is to exculpate Nazi-era Germans from knowing complicity in the Final Solution. The fact that it was recently nominated for a best picture Oscar offers stunning proof that Hollywood seems to believe that if it’s a “Holocaust film,” it must be worthy of approbation, end of story. And so a film that asks us to empathize with an unrepentant mass murderer and intimates that “ordinary Germans” were ignorant of the extermination until after the war, now stands a good chance of getting a golden statuette.
So, if “Slumdog Millionaire” wins the award in question, then should we take it as a legitimization of the existence of slums? Or should we consider the Oscars handed out to Anthony Hopkins or Marlon Brando as a celebration of evil? *
The notion that somehow a group of people expressing admiration for a piece of art, when that admiration is clearly for the art, and can only be construed very remotely, if at all, to be an acknowledgement of the message conveyed, can be seen as exactly that is risible. Even more terrorizing is the belief that anything German should be considered evil and should not be given a fair shout, because Rosenbaum, evidently a person of Jewish extraction, should know that this is the selfsame sentiment that the members of his clan have been subjected to for centuries and have been fighting against.
While we should welcome freedom of speech, we should also be careful not to let such insane, polarizing and venomous agitprop run loose. For that is the tool that Joseph Goebbels, of whom Rosenbaum seems like a modern-day version, used in his quest to exterminate Rosenbaum’s forebears.
* A much closer analogy is Adolf Hitler’s belief that Luz Long’s victory over Jesse Owens would prove to the world the supremacy of Aryan race.
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