Infotrue Educational Experiences by Rick Landman

Rick Landman's SOCIAL JUSTICE BLOG
LGBT (Gay) - GERMAN - Holocaust RELATED TOPICS

Statue of Bella Abzug for Washington Square Park, NYC
Bella Abzug


A Statue for Bella Abzug
in Washington Square Park

by Rick Landman- August 8, 2015

I went to college right after the events at Stonewall and started the Gay Liberation Front at the University of Buffalo in 1970. In 1971, I was 19 years old when we went to the First March on Albany for Gay Rights to de-criminalize the act of being gay or lesbian and to de-criminalize cross dressing. Yes, both were criminal acts at the time. We were also demanding our "Equal Rights". […]Continue Reading

Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals Exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, NYC
Exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage


Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945

Exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage NYC
by Rick Landman- August 7, 2015

As a teenager, I used to ponder over the question of whether the Nazis would have picked me up before they came for my family; if I was born in their generation. My father and grandfather were sent to Dachau for being Jewish in November 1938, but I was afraid I would have been picked up for being gay after 1933. That is why I have always had a special bond to the generation of homosexuals who lived in Germany during the Nazi era. The Nazis killed most of my father's family, and I never got to know them personally either. Both groups became part of my imaginary family of the past.[…]Continue Reading

Liberation of Dachau concentration Camp 1945
Liberation of Dachau Concentration Camp, photo sent by Martin Emil Scott,
whose father is in the foreground holding a hat, front row second from the left.


The 70th Anniversary of the Liberation of Dachau

Henry Landman's Story of the Liberation Day
by Rick Landman- April 2015

My father, Henry (Heinz) Landman, was so excited to be invited to the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of Dachau; for he was not only there at the liberation as an American soldier, but was also interned there as a Jew after Kristallnacht. Sadly, he died shortly after receiving the invitation. Over the years, he told me so many stories about Dachau, but I think this one is the most relevant for the 70th Anniversary of the Liberation. This is in remembrance of one of the stories my father told me. […]Continue Reading

Henry Landman Obituary
Henry Landman Obituary


My Dad's Life

The Life & Stories of My Dad (June 12, 1920 - December 29, 2014)
by Rick Landman- January 19, 2015

Even at 62 years of age, I thought I was exempt from losing a parent. My father, Henry Landman (born Heinz Landmann) survived Dachau, World War II and was still going strong at 94.5 years old. He was even invited to go back to Dachau for the 70th Anniversary of its Liberation in April 2015 since he was not only an inmate after Kristallnacht in 1938, but an American soldier when Dachau was liberated in 1945. Although not up to traveling, we were going to try to do something on Skype in April for their program. Coincidences and survival were always part of his life, but on December 29, 2014 he died[…]Continue Reading



Kristallnacht: 24 hour story of Henry Landman's arrest
Kristallnacht: 24 hour story of Henry Landman's arrest


Kristallnacht

24 Hour story of Henry Landman's Arrest on November 10, 1938
by Rick Landman- November 9, 2014

It was November 9, 1938 and my 18 year old father and his family went to sleep in their apartment in Augsburg as usual after hearing on the radio that a 17 year old Jewish boy shot a German official in Paris. Two Gestapo agents in green Bavarian garb rang the doorbell at his family's apartment at 5 a.m. in the morning. His aunt (who was to die a few years later in the camps) answered the door. All they said was, "Does Heinz Landmann live here?"[…]Continue Reading



Kristallnacht and the World Trade Center both being 9-11
Kristallnacht and the World Trade Center both being 9-11


Kristallnacht and the World Trade Center:
Both being 9-11

Comparing days that my father and I won't ever forget
by Rick Landman- November 9, 2014

November 9, 1938 was Kristallnacht, the night when discrimination escalated into a Holocaust. In Germany, they write the day as 9.11.38. The day comes before the month. In America, 9/11 is the day when my neighborhood was rocked with two airplanes intentionally crashing into the World Trade Center. […]Continue Reading



12 Lessons I Learned from the Holocaust
12 Lessons I Learned from the Holocaust


What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?
12 Lessons I Learned from the Holocaust

This is the Summary to the Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - November 2, 2014

This is the Summary of the lessons that I learned from the Holocaust. The reasoning behind these lessons can be derived by reading the Series of 7 Blogs. […]Continue Reading

Here is the SERIES of 7 Blogs relating to how my personal experiences as a son of 2 Refugees taught me these lessons.

The gang of kids from my block in Queens
These are the kids from my block in Queens. I am the shortest boy in the front row. My brother and I were the only children of refugees. The others' grandparents immigrated to America around 1900.


What happens to the 2nd Generation of Refugees? Part 1: Treating Refugees the Right Way

A Blog Series Written By a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 8, 2014

I was so blessed to be born in New York City. It was my parents and grandparents who had to flee persecution as refugees. They were one of the few lucky ones who were able to leave Nazi Germany in 1939. Due to a quirk of old geographical lines, my grandfather was considered a Russian living in Germany and thus was able to come to America, while his siblings, parents, and relatives perished in the Holocaust. In all 17 members of the immediate family perished in the camps.

Photo of the Landman family who was able to come to America
This is a photo of my father, his sisters and his parents. They were the only survivors of the immediate family who were able to take refuge in America. My great grandparents and my grandparents' siblings all died in the Holocaust.

What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?
PART 2: Each Generation Inherits the Troubles of the Past


A Series Written By a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 19, 2014

I've come to believe that "Nurture" (culture) is just as important in influencing our lives as our free will and "Nature"(DNA). When I started a group for children of Holocaust Survivors I noticed how many similar traits, quirks, and perceptions were shared by the members. It is not that hard to understand how what affected our parents influences us. So whether it was slavery, extermination, ethnic cleansing, or even things like alcoholism, which create what we now call Post Traumatic Stress can be "inherited" for the next generation will have to deal with it. […]Continue Reading

Kindertransport children who were both refugees and immigrants and Holocaust Survivors
Kindertransport children who were both refugees and immigrants and Holocaust Survivors, photo from en.wikipedia.org


What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?
PART 3: Refugees vs. Holocaust Survivors vs. Immigrants

A Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 26, 2014

Understanding the lives of refugees and their descendants is something that deserves more attention. In today's world there are so many refugees leaving everything behind due to wars, genocides, religious discrimination, and thanks to our nuclear world, from places like Fukushima and Chernobyl. […]Continue Reading

Rick in lederhosen at Belleyare Ski Resort in the summer
Rick Landman in lederhosen at Belleyare Ski Resort in the summer


What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?
PART 4: German Jewish Culture in Washington Heights and the Catskills

A Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 27, 2014

While I cannot possibly remember how it was when my parents and grandparents came to America in 1939, I can write about what it was growing up in the 1950-60's as the child of two refugees. […]Continue Reading

Cows walking home by themselves in Bavaria. Photo from schoellerfamily.org
Cows walking home by themselves in Bavaria. Photo from schoellerfamily.org


What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?

PART 5: Desire to Return to Live in the Homeplace of your Parents

A Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 28, 2014

3 out of 4 of my grandparents were born in Germany, where some of my family was living there since the 1500's. My grandpa fought in WWI for the Kaiser and told me wonderful stories of little villages where cows walked down from the mountainside at dusk to go into their owner's houses by themselves. Childhood stories (Struwwelpeter) and poems (Huppa Huppa Reiter) were song to me in German. My grandpa never really became fluent in English and my favorite pastry was a Lebkuchen. But with all of this, I never dreamed about living Germany. […]Continue Reading

German-American dual citizenship with two passports
German-American dual citizenship with two passports


What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?

PART 6: German Restitution Policies

A Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - October 29, 2014

Wiedergutmachung (reparations or restitution) is a word I remember from my childhood. I now know that not all Germans were Nazis. But all Germans (then and now) participated in the restitution to Jews. Historical Note: Hitler got 36.8% of the votes or 13,418,547 people, and lost out to Paul von Hindenburg with 53.0% of the vote or 19,359,983 people. Hitler then maneuvered himself into power with the help of violent thugs of the S.A.) […]Continue Reading

Refugees from Bosnia, 1995. REUTERS (BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA)
Refugees from Bosnia, 1995. REUTERS (BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA)

What happens to the Next Generation of Refugees?


PART 7: Experiences of Children of Refugees Worldwide

A Series Written By of a Child of 2 German Jewish Refugees,
by Rick Landman - November 1, 2014

Parents have been forced to flee their homes and seek refuge even before Abraham sent Hagar and her son out into the desert. The Bible is full of people having to flee for their lives or of one group displacing another. Sadly, little has changed. I was so fortunate that America took my family in, as compared to others who are still living in limbo.[…]Continue Reading



German Jewish contingent in 2014 Steuben Parade
German Jewish Contingent in the NYC 2014 Steuben Parade


For the fifth year there was a German Jewish presence at the Steuben Parade; well sort of. The banner and I were there, commemorating the contributions of German Jews to American culture. But once again, the people who signed up to walk with me earlier in the year backed out as we entered September. […]Continue Reading


Voyage of the St. Louis
Lessons From the Voyage of the St. Louis


Lessons From the Voyage of the St. Louis

From German Pulse April 30, 2014

May 13th will be the 75th anniversary of the Voyage of the St. Louis, when over 900 Jewish refugees were given the chance to leave Nazi Germany. This was Hitler's next test to see how America would react after the Nurnberg Laws on 1935 and Kristallnacht in 1938. When Hitler took power in January 1933 […]Continue Reading


One Man Show
New Show Combines Holocaust With America's LGBT History


This March Marymount Manhattan College hosted a collaborative educational experience called "Riding the Arc of History", based on my life experiences of being a gay son of Holocaust Survivors who became a German citizen. I created a humorous multi-media storytelling performance to encourage Social Justice while teaching history. Instead of just lecturing at Daphnie Sicre's […] Continue Reading


Sochi Torch Lighting
Sochi Olympics 2014

To Sochi, or Not to Sochi?
What is the Real Question?

From German Pulse January 15, 2014

While some are debating whether it is more productive to boycott the Russian 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi due to Russia's homophobic policies, or to participate and hope for a "Jesse Owens" moment, I would like to look at the issue from an American-German historical perspective. Being a dual German and American citizen, and a […] Continue Reading


Thanksgivakkah
Thanksgivakkah Story

A German Thanksgivakkah Miracle

From German Pulse November 28, 2013

Today is a special day. In a very rare occurrence, the first day of Chanukah falls on Thanksgiving Day. Seventy four years ago, my family got its best gift. Henry Landman, my 19-year-old father arrived by himself in New York City on Thanksgiving Day in 1939. A year earlier in November 1938, he was arrested […] Continue Reading


Beth Shalom, Munich
Beth Shalom Synagogue, Munich Rendering

Kristallnacht: Before, During, and Especially After

From German Pulse November 13, 2013

For decades, my father would give me a minute by minute accounting of the day the Gestapo woke him from his bed in Augsburg on November 10, 1938 until he fell asleep on the floor in Dachau at midnight. Every year I also say Kaddish for Leopold Rieser, the attorney, who was beaten to death […] Continue Reading


LGBT German Group
LGBT German Group Launches In New York City


LGBT German Group Launches In New York City

From German Pulse October 16, 2013

Taking an inspiration from Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, who using today's terminology was a gay German (actually he was a Prussian who loved men, according to Benjamin Franklin), a social group for LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Germans is now launching in New York City. The new group is called "LGBT-Germans" and is for LGBT […]Continue Reading


Steuben Parade
Steuben Parade - Jewish Contingent


For the 4th time, there was a Jewish Contingent walking in the Steuben Parade to commemorate German Jewish Contributions to America. When I had the idea, I wondered if this mere act could be considered insensitive for some Jews. I remember my own mixed emotions the first time I walked in the Parade. While I […]Continue Reading


German Borsht Belt
German Borsht Belt


The German Borsht Belt and the Atomic Bomb

From German Pulse August 15, 2013

Most New Yorkers have heard about the Jewish Borsht Belt in the Catskills on Route 17 during the 20th Century. But very few people know that there was a German enclave in the Catskills on Route 28, where German hotel owners catered to a mostly German Jewish refugee clientele from the 1930's through the 1970's. […]Continue Reading


Dual citizenship
Dual German-American Citizenship


Like other Baby Boomers, I grew up hating Germans from watching black & white war movies and hearing about the Nazi atrocities. However, I was the child of two German Holocaust Survivors, with parts of my family living in Germany since the 1500's. I heard beautiful stories of Jewish life in pre-Nazi Germany and learned […]Continue Reading


Jews in Steuben Parade
Jewish Contingent in Steuben German-American Parade


Jewish Contingent in Steuben German-American Parade

From German Pulse June 12, 2013

Are you, or do you know anyone of German Jewish Descent, or any Dual German-American Jews? For the fourth year, there will be a Jewish Contingent marching in the New York Steuben German-American Friendship Parade (September 21, 2013) commemorating German Jewish contributions to America. Most people do not know how many German Jewish people, groups […] Continue Reading


Sheepshead Bay Holocaust Memorial Park
NYC Holocaust Memorial Park in Sheepshead Bay - Other Victims of Nazi era


America now has public stone memorial markers remembering the lives of the Other Victims of the Nazi Era and is now telling their stories. In the early 1990's, New York City created the Holocaust Memorial Park in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, with well over 100 stone markers to memorialize the Jewish victims and to educate […] Continue Reading


German Hagadah
Pre-War German Hagadah still in use


Pre-War German Hagadah Still In Use Today

From German Pulse April 17, 2013

After my 18 year old father was released from Dachau, he packed his family's set of Passover "Hagadahs" and sent them to his father in New York City in 1939, and then used his Temporary Transit Visa to get to London. He then joined his father in NYC in November 1939. [The Hagadah tells […]Continue Reading


Survivors and Veterans
Holocaust Survivors and Veterans


This month the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum held a conference to be a Tribute to Holocaust Survivors and World War II Veterans. I went because my father was both; an inmate of Dachau after Kristallnacht and with the U.S. Army when they liberated the town of Dachau. As a child I knew my parents […]Continue Reading


Washington Heights
From Washington Heights to Munich


From Washington Heights to Munich

From German Pulse February 13, 2013

In my last installment, you learned how the Torah that my mother's father brought to America was given to the Liberal Congregation Beth Shalom in Munich. From 1946 until the early 1960's, that Torah was housed in Congregation Beth Hillel in Washington Heights, NY. This was a congregation of Jews who fled from Bavaria under […]Continue Reading


German Torah
A German Torah Returns Home to Germany


A German Torah Returns Home to Germany

From German Pulse January 22, 2013

I started the International Association of Lesbian and Gay Children of Holocaust Survivors in 1990. At its peak, we had 150 members in eleven countries, with about a dozen members living in Germany, mostly in Munich. Later in that decade, Rabbi Walter Homolka came to my Synagogue (CBST – the LGBT Synagogue) to speak about […]Continue Reading


Gay Marriage in 1965
Gay Marriage in 1965 and a German Torah


Gay Marriage in 1965 and a German Torah

From German Pulse December 27, 2012

I started coming out as a nice Jewish gay boy in 1965 at the age of 13. It started in April with me asking my Hebrew School teacher if there was a blessing for two men to get married. That was when we were learning the ritual of breaking a glass at a Jewish wedding;[…]Continue Reading


Lebkuchen
Lebkuchen for Chanukah


Lebkuchen for Chanukah

From German Pulse December 8, 2012

This is the first of several articles about why, as a Jew, I became a dual German American citizen in 2007, why I returned a German Torah back to Munich in 2005, why I created a Jewish contingent for NYC's Steuben Parade ever since 2010, and why I run German Pride Talks and Walking Tours […]Continue Reading