When I was a sophomore in college, in 1977, some of us students were gathered just outside a TV lounge in John Jay Hall (at Columbia University).
That evening's presentation of the mini-series "Roots" had just finished. One of the students was black, and as we chatted he mentioned how reading Alex Haley's book had turned him on to genealogy.
He was very enthusiastic, and he started to ask each of us in turn, "Have you ever looked into genealogy?"
When he asked me, I told him I wasn't interested. He turned to the next boy and asked, "Have you ever looked up your family tree."
The kid was Jewish. He looked him in the eye and said
"Hitler burned down my family tree."
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