Miep Gies – Profiles In Courage


The headline noted, Miep Gies dies at age 100. I did not, as you might not, recognize the name.  However the name next to hers I recognized. That name was Anne Frank. You may not recognize the second name either. While the opportunity is present, and before the headline passes into the ethernet (hopefully to be cached forever by Google), take a few minutes to read about both.  Here’s the url to the headline.

Briefly, Miep Gies helped hide Anne Frank and her family for two years from the Nazis during World War II in occupied Amsterdam. If you can’t imagine, actions like this were not tolerated well by the occupiers. Three of the four Frank family members died after their hiding place was given to the Nazis and the family put in concentration camps.  Anne Frank died two weeks before her concentration camp was liberated.  Miep Gies found and kept safe a diary Anne wrote while in hiding, which is the book listed below.  When asked later why she helped hide the Franks, Gies said; “They were powerless, they didn’t know where to turn…”, “We did our duty as human beings: helping people in need.”   She also noted later, “‘More than twenty thousand Dutch people helped to hide Jews and others in need of hiding during those years. I willingly did what I could to help. My husband did as well. It was not enough.”

Reading the article also reminded me of another book I read a long time ago,  Profiles in Courage.  The title aptly recognizes Miep Gies actions.  The examples in the book describe a different type of courage.  Regardless, if you take a few minutes to read the news article above, this would be a good time to ask ourselves, how much do we value courage today?  When it comes to doing the right thing, are the words still in our vocabulary?   Do we look up to people like these, or do we idolize the latest star of the latest reality show?

“A man does what he must – in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures – and that is the basis of all human morality.”, from Profiles In Courage.

Miep Gies – Wikipedia
Anne Frank – Wikipedia
More about Miep Gies.

Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl

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