Miami Beach

 

One of the top tourist spots in the U.S. is Miami Beach. Miami Beach is a city located in Miami-Dade County Florida. Visitors have been flocking here for over 100 years to enjoy the beautiful blue beaches and the diverse culture. Miami Beach became a separate free standing entity in the early 1900’s.

 

The most recent census shows Miami Beach getting close to breaking the 90,000 persons mark with over 50% of the population being foreign born.

 Miami Beach is also home to a large amount of Jewish people. Over the years the Jewish residents have erected many beautiful synagogues (a building or place of worship and religious instruction in the Jewish faith) and yeshivas (an institute of learning where students study sacred texts, primarily the Talmud). Miami Beach has long been a haven for those practicing the Jewish faith. To accommodate this group of people numerous kosher (a special set of dietary laws followed by people practicing the Jewish faith) restaurants were built throughout the city.

miami beach

 

In the 1982 census it was shown that there were an estimated 60,000 Jewish people residing within the city limits. This accounted for over 62% of

the entire population of Miami Beach. In the most recent survey conducted in 2004, the Jewish population had decreased dramatically.

 

There were now only 16,500 Jewish households making up only 19% of the population. Conceived by a group of Holocaust survivors in 1984;

a plan was drawn up to build a memorial in memory of all those who lost their lives or suffered during this testing time for humanity.

 

The Holocaust Memorial on Miami Beach was completed on February 4th 1990. At the start of the memorial is a large black granite wall explaining the history of the Holocaust. The following walkway leads to a passage with an eternal light and bearing the names of all the concentration camps known

from World War II. After exiting this passage you are directed into a plaza centered on a sculpture of a 42 feet arm. This arm is “tattooed” with a serial number just like was done to the prisoners locked away in the Nazi concentration camps. Upon circling around to the beginning of the memorial, you will find a large wall inscribed with all of the victims of the Holocaust.

 

In early 2007 controversy surrounding the Holocaust Memorial came into light when slain journalist Daniel Pearl became the first non-Holocaust person to be inscribed on the wall. The Jewish community took it as a “smack in the face” and stated that it was nothing more than the use of Holocaust to play political games!