To the editor:
The World of Anne Frank exhibit, sponsored by Geneva Steel, will be at the City and County Building until April 22.The first thing that struck me when I looked at the panel with her enlarged photograph was the innocence of Anne Frank's face. A young girl smiling at the world. And then I read the dates marking her life. 1929 to 1945. Sixteen short years.
The World of Anne Frank. For two years, at least, her world was literally the size of a small attic consisting of two rooms and eight people. And, yet, her world was large - as anyone reading her diary would attest - bringing to it all the eternal ideals that keep it spinning: hope, wonder, love, but also fear, indignation, hate.
Anne Frank remains a memorable figure because we see through her young eyes the terror of the Holocaust and, at the same time, the natural tendency to create order out of the surrounding chaos, to give life meaning when so much senselessness pervades it.
Ultimately, her story is such a sad one. Her family takes the last train to Auschwitz. She and her sister die two months before their camp is liberated. I think of this and look again at the poster's dates.
The World of Anne Frank exhibit serves to remind us of widespread atrocities that begin quietly and escalate so slowly; of events that seem benign enough at the beginning, though their menacing underside is surely evident to anyone who really looks.
It serves to remind us of the importance of looking at what is happening in the world today, of taking responsibility for it, of forcing ourselves not to look away - because by looking away, by remaining silent, we allow the senselessness that led to Anne's cruel death to continue. The World of Anne Frank exhibit helps keep us vigilant.
Mayor Palmer DePaulis
Salt Lake City