Kendall Kindred Kendall is the Editor and Staff Writer for TFP.
As a kid, I read constantly. The one subject that I always felt drawn to was World War II. Watching the debates, the way Trump carries himself, his political tactics and actions in office, all I’ve been able to think is “I’ve seen this before”. And I have. We all have. That’s the most terrifying thing. Adolf Hitler’s rise to power was a rapid one. Shortly after becoming the leader of the Nazi party, he used his voice to capitalize on the fears of German people in a collapsing economy. As the party grew, he assured citizens that he would return Germany to its former greatness, and used fear-mongering tactics to place blame and hatred onto the Jewish community. His rhetoric resonated with many anti-Semites, and they flocked to support him. Meanwhile, in fear of public backlash, many businessmen and politicians sided with Hitler, telling themselves and each other that his more extreme policies were only for show, and would never actually see the light of day. Sound familiar yet? Once in power, Hitler swiftly got rid of his War Minister and Colonel-General after they disobeyed orders. Following his appointment as Commander-In-Chief, twenty-eight generals were stripped of their commands and forty-four more were transferred after they were suspected of not being pro-Nazi enough. He berated the press, and eventually did away with freedom of the press altogether. Books were written praising Hitler, and anything opposing him was burned. Though fond of mass deportation, Hitler’s true vision was the complete elimination of Jewish people, and he committed heinous and unforgivable acts in order to achieve that goal. Donald Trump is on the fast track to becoming a dictator. That may sound like an exaggeration, and for I while I thought it was, but the truth behind it is alarming. Trump has targeted a group of people and amplified their already-existing fear by acknowledging and encouraging it. He made all Muslim people out to be terrorists. He has banned them from entering our country and is in favor of mass deportation, something that eerily mirrors Adolf Hitler. His policies promote hatred, though his campaign slogan boasts a promise of greatness. Trump lashes out at the media, claims that anything that doesn’t show him in a positive light is “fake news”, and immediately discredits publications that oppose him. He has emboldened people who were already racist, and those people have committed monstrous crimes against minorities. Just ten days into his presidency, Trump fired the Acting Attorney General promptly after she declared one of his executive orders unconstitutional. He is a fascist, and his followers wholeheartedly support it. When actual members of the Nazi party are in full support of a leader, you have to acknowledge that something is very wrong. We are taught history so that we do not repeat the actions and failures of those before us. We learn about conflicts of the past so that we can recognize the warning signs and solve the problems before they occur. Never in my life did I think it would be necessary to remind people of Adolf Hitler’s tyranny in an attempt to stop a current leader from following in his footsteps, but it is necessary now. We have to recognize the parallels between Nazi Germany and present-day America before it’s too late. Right now, we are at a turning point. Our actions today will live on in history lessons long after we are gone. We can either fall into complacency as the Germans did, or we can resist. I choose to resist.