You cannot erase history no matter how disturbing or inconvenient. In 1939 the German ocean liner St. Louis was just off the port of Miami carrying 900 plus Jewish refugees looking for asylum from Nazi Germany. The State Department, the FBI and Franklin Roosevelt turned them away arguing they were a threat to national security. They were returned to Europe. Those that were allowed into Britain survived. Those that ended up in the Netherlands and Belgium did not…more than a quarter of them. Roosevelt’s role in the issues facing the Jews in Nazi Germany is mixed. He raised several concerns internationally…but refused to increase the immigration quotas that would have allowed more Jews into the United States. Then there was this St. Louis thing. Reading the entire story is much more disturbing than this few line synopsis. The quotas played a pivotal role in the decision to turn away the St. Louis. In 1942 Roosevelt issued an Executive Order requiring all German, Italian, and Japanese aliens to register with the government…which in turn facilitated the relocation of Japanese Americans to internment camps for the duration of the war. So how should we handle Franklin Roosevelt’s bigotry and racism?