“The greatest generation,” soon to be followed by the “baby boomers;” are swiftly leaving us for a better place. To these generations, evil in the form of Socialism, Nazism, Fascism, and Communism, were not just important sounding words used to up the ante in a high school debate competition. These generations, have lived fought, defeated and seen the aftermath of these specters. To those now leaving us, these ideas are not abstractions. They are not simply words lightly bandied about to impress and intimidate. They are not words which were ever used lightly or toyed with as alternatives to freedom. To these passing generations, the horrors brought into this world by these depraved oligarchies had to be defeated on the battlefield. The memory of the blood so spilt is still fresh.
Yet even while these heroes are still among us, we have Bernie Sanders asking, “what is wrong with socialism? Look at Sweden.” (Sweden by the way considers itself to be a capitalist country.) We have a bunch of street thugs reminiscent of Hitler’s youth mobs destroying property, stopping production, looting legitimate place of business, and attacking people in the streets of our country simply because they have a difference of opinion. One such group calls themselves “Antifa,” or anti-fascists while employing the self-same fascist tactics they claim to fight against. Recently, my high school student came home from public school stating that some of the ideas of communism seem to make sense. “Equality for all, etc.” And totally beyond belief, Nazi’s are now considered “far-right” in the political spectrum.
In the Book of Mormon, somewhere around 100 BC, during the time of King Mosiah, Alma records; “…it came to pass that there were many of the rising generation that could not understand the words (Of King Benjamin) … And now because of their unbelief they could not understand… and their hearts were hardened.” The rising generation, had not been alive during the reign of King Benjamin and so they could not understand the teaching and beliefs of their parents. Accordingly, they set about rebelling and causing great tribulation.
So, it seems with the rising generation in the United States. These evils, not long ago defeated through large sacrifices of blood and treasure in far off distant places, are not understood, the evils which they committed are not known and the struggles needed to rid our world of them is no longer appreciated by those who did not witness the struggle.
Unbelievably we even have national media personalities, supposedly educated and intelligent individuals, comparing President Trump to Hitler. Their rationale seems to focus around conjectures of racism and his nationalism. This is not only absurd, it shows a deep level of ignorance on the part of those making such allegations. Folks, this sort of propaganda is not only wrong, it is dangerous, and it belittles the memory of those who opposed the horrific tragedy that was Nazi Germany.
Let’s put a few things in perspective with a little history.
Hitler abolished civil rights inserting his form of oppressive government into the everyday lives of German citizens. He crafted a large socialist government controlling almost all means of production and commerce. Trump, on the other hand, has systematically set about to dismantle an over burdensome bureaucracy deleting 22 federal regulation for every one that he has initiated and refusing to fill a number of Federal positions that he considers to be unnecessary. A better US example of Nazi Germany’s growth would be President Obama’s shortcutting of constitutional processes, through the use of executive orders, to significantly increase the government’s size and its intervention in our lives.
Hitler is infamous for murdering his political opponents. Trump calls them names. Not quite the same thing. The closest thing we have seen in this country, since the day that Aaron Burr shot Alexander Hamilton, is the curious line of suicides and dark alley murders that seem to accompany those who oppose the Clintons. (Just saying.)
With the echoes of Bernie Sanders still vibrating through the halls of America it is of value to note that Hitler was a true socialist. Nazi is the German abbreviation for the National Socialist German Workers Party. Socialism, a system of government which controls civilian production and commerce, is antithesis to President Trump’s strong belief in Capitalism. Nazism and Trump’s capitalism, are not compatible.
Hitler’s populism played largely on telling the German population they were victims of the religious rich. In this case the Jews. He rationalized that it was thus OK to take their riches from them and to put them in concentration camps. Today in America we have the one percent movement, shouts of the rich not paying “their fair share,” and the DNC pandering to a doctrine of victimology in stark parody of Hitler’s propaganda.
Hitler enforced his views with gangs of “Brown Shirts, a paramilitary organization, and with youth gangs who disrupted rallies for opposing parties and terrorized citizens who failed to conform to or agree with Nazi doctrine. In the US we have Antifa and Black Lives Matter. Both engaging in similar political disruptions and vigilante acts of violence. Both of which are partially paid, unofficial arms of the DNC. There is no Republican or “Trump” equivalent. A twitter account and a few unkind words just simply do not rise to the same level of bulling and intimidation as a baseball bat and chants of “fry them like bacon.”
Hitler set up gas chambers to systematically murder Germans; those that were Jewish, black, handicapped, etc.; all citizens of the country he was elected to serve. Trump, on the other hand, thinks that citizenship should have its privileges. He feels that we need to vet those coming to our country from places that stand in open war against us. The comparison being made by those who would draw similarities between Trump and Hitler on grounds of racism are giving equivalency to killing your own citizens with; not allowing citizens from other countries unrestricted access to kill us where we live. One is murder, the other is common sense.
Hitler created a safety program to remove guns from private homes because they posed a danger to our children through accidents and improper use. The exact same reasons for enhanced gun control being put forth in America today. Two years later, when Hitler rounded up the Jews and put them in concentration camps, they had no way to defend themselves. On the other hand, President Trump supports the second amendment.
Folks, while we need to be ever diligent and watchful against the rise of totalitarian oligarchies, comparisons between Trump and oppressive dictators of the world’s recent past simply serve only to point out the total ignorance and willful misdirection of those making such assertions. In short, these comparisons are stupid and dangerous. It simply comes down to clumsy propaganda.
However, if you absolutely must make such ignorant comparisons, array your vindictive villainy against those who today espouse socialism; disruptive violence; vigilante oppression of opposing political parties; those who seem to leave a long line of conveniently dead opposition; those who would disarm you; and those who seek to gain more control over our thoughts, beliefs, and lives. Most of all, if you are going to contribute to the discussion, do so intelligently.
Here is a tip: Evil individuals and groups can be identified by their desire to take away our freedom. Those who strive to do so are the bad guys. It is a very simple litmus test. Always remember, “The essence of freedom is the proper limitation of government.”
Samuel Waen Jensen