Suffrage Perturbs German Jewry
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Suffrage Perturbs German Jewry

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The Juedische Rundschau, official organ of the German Zionist Federation, remarks editorially in connection with a statement by Dr. Wilhelm Frick, Minister of the Interior, on the future constitution of the Reich that apparently the question has not yet been settled but that in all probability the free exercise of the franchise will be reserved for “Aryans.”

Dr. Frick was quoted recently as asserting that “the general, equal, direct and secret suffrage will continue to remain valid for both sexes of all German State citizens.”

According to the principles formulated for the National Socialist party by Reichsfuehrer Hitler, only Germans may be citizens, however, and only those are German who are of German “Aryan” blood.


“We Jews are taking an active part in the development of the new State structure,” the editorial of the Juedische Rundschau says. “In addition to the problems which affect all citizens, we are naturally interested also in those questions which affect our own status.

” ‘Aryan’ legislation has restricted our rights and our activity in German life within specified spheres. Fundamentally, however, there has been no legal regulation of our position, which has been changed by the dominating conception, which accepts the race principle.

“For this reason, Dr. Frick’s statement roused our attention. What emerges from his statement is that no definite decision has yet been adopted on the question of State citizenship.”


The Rundschau editorial recalls that Dr. Nicolai, who was appointed rapporteur on the constitution, expressed the opinion that the future fundamental law would make a distinction between subjects of the Reich who are co-nationals and subjects of the Reich who are “race aliens.” Members of the latter category would remain subjects but they would not be citizens.

“Of course,” the editorial continues, “it is of the utmost fundamental importance for the German Jews that they should retain the State citizenship which they secured in the course of emancipation—and not because of practical reasons or for any advantages associated with it, but because they feel themselves full citizens of this Reich, and do not wish to bear, the odium of legally reduced status.


“We are clear in our own mind that the decision is not dependent upon us. Therefore it is premature for any Jewish quarters to make inferences in this or in the other direction, on the claim of having learned this or the other concerning the future shaping of the Jewish status.”

The journal emphasizes the importance of the Saar plebiscite, saying the reversion of the territery to Germany will remove a ground of conflict which a few months ago seemed to contain dynamite.

“The German Jews believe that with their specific accomplishments and knowledge in many fields,” the editorial continues, “they can serve the reconstruction of Germany, especially in the economic field.

“We do not underestimate the difficulties which are today bound up with this problem, but we cannot abandon the hope that within the new forms of State life that are in process of development there will be a way of providing for the productive incorporation of the Jewish element.

“While we strive for this, we shall never lose the consciousness that Jewish fate must under all conditions be borne proudly and uprightly.”


In conclusion the Rundschau warns that the internal position of the Jews must not be made dependent upon external factors or circumstances. Judaism is the moving force of the Jews’ fate, it says.

“It is more to us than external pressure—it is the basis of our existence. Deprived of our place in the Jewish community, we lose the ground under our feet.

“If we arrange our own affairs properly, we shall gradually find a basis on which we can cooperate also in the shaping of the situation in Germany.”

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