French Town Resists Calls to Change Name from 'Death to Jews'

'No one has anything against the Jews, of course...'

Leave it to the French. They didn't put up much resistance when Nazi's were marching through their streets and raising swastikas on the Arc de Triomphe, but you ask them to change the name of a town from  'Death To Jews' and they act like the 300 Spartans fighting off the the Persians at Thermopylae. 

This is not a joke.  "La Mort aux Juifs"is a small town in central France and its name translates to "Death To Jews." 

The Director of International Affairs at the Simon Wiesenthal Centre has sent a letter to France's interior minister to demand that the offensive name be changed. "It is extremely shocking that this name has slipped under the radar in the 70 years that have passed since France was liberated from Nazism and the (pro-Nazi) Vichy regime," he wrote.

Unbelievably, the town is resisting: (AFP)

"It's ridiculous. This name has always existed," Marie-Elizabeth Secretand told AFP.

"No one has anything against the Jews, of course. It doesn't surprise me that this is coming up again," she added.

Changing the name would require a decision by the municipal council, which Secretand deemed unlikely.

"Why change a name that goes back to the Middle Ages or even further? We should respect these old names."

So the name, apparently, is all about heritage, not hate.  Which is fine, except when your heritage is hateful.