What do you see in the above title? Probably just a series of red ❌s. Nothing more, nothing less. After attending the International Quilt Festival in Houston earlier this month, I now know each set of two red ❌❌s meant death at the hands of the Nazis for a physically or mentally disabled person.
Let me introduce you to The 70,273 Project.
Coordinated by Jeanne Hewell-Chambers, the project’s purpose is to remember the reported 70,273 disabled killed because they’d been deemed “useless eaters”, people unworthy of life.
I’d stumbled across the interactive booth at Festival and met Peggy Odum Thomas and Cindy Cavallo who gave me a brief synopsis of Aktion T4, the Nazis name for their extermination program. Before I left, I’d snagged myself a block kit and signed my name to another. The goal is to make a block for each of the people killed under the program.
I made my way over to the quilt exhibit side and found several rows of quilts comprised entirely of blocks made of two red ❌❌s on a white or cream colored background.
Jeanne’s husband, Andy aka The Engineer, explained Aktion T4, the panel of three physicians, and the meaning behind the two ❌❌s at the bottom of a medical form.
Some things are better off forgotten: shoulder pads, leg warmers, your sixth-grade boyfriend.
But not this.
Please consider visiting Jeanne’s blog or either of the Facebook pages and learning more.
Please also consider becoming involved.
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” ~Edmund Burke (?)