Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Clara Dan - July 1, 1982

American Jews

Are you talking about American Jews?


Or just Americans in general.

No, no, no, no, no. American Jews. American Jews.

You felt that they...

Uh, I just felt that I don't want their, I don't want their pity and I don't want their snobbishness.

I've heard that before.

And, uh...

So most of your friends--do you stay mostly with your friends from...

We have mixed crowd.

You don't just have friends from Europe.

Oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no. In fact uh, I always--we always try to mix. But not so much now, okay? But at the beginning I still say that the biggest part, you know, when they give me--made us the remark "What do you want, you have everything. You have relatives to came with us but when we came out to this country we had to work for everything." Okay? And uh, once I got so angry that I told somebody, I asked them if they really came out with the Mayflower by any chances. And uh, that's why we were really very hesitant on talking about it. And uh, Shirley knew everything and we had open discussions. But to make an issue not to tell Shirley, "Now listen you sit down and I'm going to tell you and because uh, I am a newcomer and I've suffered. The suffering how much I suffered and how easy it is for you kids but I suffered." Never, never. In fact, I always told Shirley that I hope that you, you will get from your father and your mother just a little bit of the love and understanding and level headedness as much as we got from our parents. All I can tell you that. I was told so many times, "You went to a concentration camp, you haven't got kosher kitchen. How come?" I said, "Because in my eyes, if they did what they did to my husband's family, my husband's mother who was so deeply religious and a good soul and all his sisters and my parents were so good." Okay, I didn't lose my parents in the concentration camp. But I felt, I was engaged to my husband before and he was very religious and it would have been a normal thing for me to have a kosher house. Not to put a light on, on Shabbos, not to cook on Shabbos. Because that was a natural thing back home. But here I feel that I am just as good of a Jew because I don't have kosher kitchen as the one who has and beats her head against the wall so to say. And my own daughter has a kosher house. But on a Holiday she wants to--she went to shul since she was three years old. In fact I was one of the organizers of the PT, of the PTO in shul. I was very active in shul. And uh, I feel that uh, Shirley knows enough about the Holocaust and everything that happened without uh, making her sit down and listen to this or listen to that.

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