Whether the issue is religion, politics, gender, sexual orientation or something else, hatred is still hatred. While the following are the goals of the March of the Living organization, they can, for the most part, be applied to human rights organizations everywhere.
- To never again allow for the unchecked rise of the menace of anti-Semitism or any kind of racial discrimination directed by any individual or group in society against another to gain strength. Included in this goal is the teaching that all human beings are equal, precious and valued, and the diminution of the dignity of any member of the human family is a cardinal violation of all ethical teachings.
- To recognize and learn from the altruistic actions of the “righteous among the nations”, who teach us to never be a bystander in the face of oppression.
- To remember those who perished, to be a witness, thus denying Hitler a “posthumous victory”. The role of the survivor is a key element in this goal.
- To pay tribute to the courage of those who survived the Holocaust, who rebuilt their lives despite the haunting memories of the past.
- To honor the heroic veterans of World War II who fought to liberate Europe from the hands of Nazi tyranny.
- To welcome opportunities to learn about participants’ different ethnicities and beliefs so that we may transcend our religious, political, and cultural boundaries in order to bear witness to the common humanity we all share.
- To inspire participants to commit to building a world free of oppression and intolerance, a world of freedom, democracy and justice, for all members of the human family. Related to this goal is to teach the message that, when participants return to their communities, each of them has the ability to make a real and lasting difference in the world.
- The final goal is not so much to learn from or about history, but to enter into history. By visiting Germany and Poland, students are taking part in a commemorative act that declares that the memory of six million Jews and millions of other innocent victims – Poles, Roma and Sinti, Jehovah’s Witnesses, homosexuals, the disabled and political prisoners – who were murdered during the Holocaust and World War II, has been marked and will never be forgotten.