Targeting the Jews One Law at a Time
The Third Reich’s national laws against the Jews were outrageous. Hitler and Nazis were trying to ease the history and culture from the German state. In class, professor Ganyard talked about that the 1st stage in the removal of the Jews was “Exclusion.” The Nazis went to the extreme in this stage. For example, scholars Benjamin Sax and Dieter Kuntz report from the First Regulation to the Reichs Citizenship Law of 14 Nov. 1935, “A Jew cannot be a citizen of the Reich. He has no right to vote in political affairs, he cannot occupy a public office” (1). This statement to me would have been a warning sign that I need to leave. However, we talked in class that many Jews were German Nationalists and did not want to leave. Yet, the Nazis tried to target them as well under the Law for the Protection of German Blood and German Honor of 15 September 1935, Section 4, “Jews are forbidden to hoist the Reich and national flag and to present the colors of the Reich” (2). This section’s purpose was to separate the Jews from the German state hoping to eliminate that Nationalism that Jews had. I think I would have felt discouraged to be a Jewish German if the law stated that I could not even show the colors or flag of my homeland and country. These laws were not simply to take away the rights of the Jewish people. If that was the case, the Nazi ideology of “pure” Aryan blood would not be fulfilled because the Jewish people still resided within the German State. I feel that the Nuremberg Laws were a way in which the Nazis were trying to make the Jews leave Germany. If they take away all the rights to the Jewish people, then the thought process would be that the Jews would migrate somewhere else. However, this did not go as planned. The Jewish people still stayed (of course some Jews couldn’t leave due to finances) and the German plan failed. This led to the next stages to solve the “Jewish Problem.”
- Benjamin Sax and Dieter Kuntz, eds., Inside Hitler’s Germany, A Documentary History of Life in the Third Reich (Lexington, Mass.: D.C. Heath and Company, 1992), 405.
- Sax and Kuntz, 407
- German Government, Wikipedia. (United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection), Created September 15, 1935. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuremberg_Laws#/media/File:Nuremberg_laws.jpg