Throughout the Spirit of America trip, I visited many different places and some destinations became very meaningful to me. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum was very meaningful to me because I am Jewish and in turn has tied me to the events of the Holocaust. Because I have been and still am being raised in a Jewish neighborhood and lifestyle, I have been subjected to the events of the Holocaust since I was only a few years old. At the time, and even up until this past year in History class, I couldn't really understand the long lasting effects and the horrific lives the Jewish prisoners had suffered. Being at the Holocaust Memorial Museum was the first time I had experienced the true effects of the Holocaust because it took a victimized stance of the Holocaust, as opposed to a more neutral stance from history class. If history class taught me what happened, then the Holocaust Memorial Museum showed me what happened. After walking underneath one of the signs of the entrance gates to Auschwitz, witnessing not one, but two massive pools full of charred and burnt shoes from Jews just like myself, it was impossible not to reflect on myself to understand the amount of Jewish people that were exterminated by the Nazis. The events of the Holocaust broke my heart to the point that it can never be fixed, not just mine, but every single Jew in the world, and although it is impossible to truly display the horrific and inhumane lives the jewish prisoners were force to live, the Holocaust Memorial Museum gave me one of, if not the closest to real life scenarios I could ever experience.
After reading Arthur Miller's The Crucible as part of the course, the class was rewarded with the privilege of being able to actually go and visit the town where are the events of the Witch Trials took place : Salem. The town has developed and changed since the events of The Crucible in 1692, however the infrastructure of the town of which appears in the play are almost identical.