Stage Three: Dehumanization

German soldier cutting the beard of a Jewish man.

German soldier cutting the beard of a Jewish man.

The Holocaust denies the Jews their humanity. They are treated as an equal to that of vermin and hate propaganda has continued to escalate. The Nazis preached of an imprecise image of the Jews, isolating all possible interactions with them and eventually excluding them from society as a whole. The clever use of propaganda, plus the widespread anti-Semitism has lead to violence, humiliation, and the persecution of Jews. Following the passing of the Nuremberg Laws in 1935, Jews are stripped of their civil rights. The Laws identified someone as a Jew by how many Jewish grandparents a person had rather than a religious belief. The Laws also deprived Jews of political rights and enforcing curfews, restricting the movement of Jews all over the country.

SA pickets, wearing boycott signs in front of the entrance of a Jewish-owned shops. The sign of the left reads: "Germans, defend yourselves against the Jewish atrocity propaganda,  buy only at German shops!" The sign on the right reads "Germans, defend yourselves, only buy at German shops!"

SA pickets, wearing boycott signs in front of the entrance of a Jewish-owned shops. The sign of the left reads: “Germans, defend yourselves against the Jewish atrocity propaganda, buy only at German shops!” The sign on the right reads “Germans, defend yourselves, only buy at German shops!”

In an attempt to further isolate the Jews, Jewish-owned businesses were taken over. Jews no longer had the right to own a business and for those few that managed to keep theirs, Nazi soldiers would stand out front and guarantee no one would come in. On November 9 and 10, 1938, the German government ordered a massacre known as the Night of Broken Glass. About 100 Jews were killed in the process while Jewish homes, synagogues, and businesses were destroyed. The Jews were forced to pay for the damages and there was no help from the authorities in preventing such a gruesome event.

The unrelenting hatred towards Jews was enforced and the general public participated in atrocious actions that violate an individuals human rights. German soldiers cut the hair of Jews in order to strike them with fear, causing the Jews to be incapable of responding and helpless. The Germans ensured they broke down what little hope the Jews had left in order for the total annihilation of the population to be as swift as possible. These actions reinforced the message that Jews were outsiders in Germany and they did not belong. The citizens of Germany felt that it was in their being itself that caused Germany to fall to such a depression and getting rid of them was the solution they have been waiting for.

 

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