Renowned historian and documentarian Ken Burns, who has done terrific series on the American Civil War, Baseball, and Prohibition, is a bit fuzzy concerning Donald Trump and the 2016 election. In an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, Burns incredulously said that he doesn’t recognize America anymore—and that this election is an existential crisis that likes we haven’t seen since World War II or the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Then, Amanpour talks about Trump’s accusation that the election is rigged, citing an LA Times op-ed by conservative Max Boot, who is staunchly anti-Trump, noting that the Republican nominee’s cries echo that of the “stabbed n the back” myth propagated by the Nazi party and other right wing German figures.
What Trump is doing is dangerous and reprehensible. He is creating his own version of the “stabbed in the back” myth propagated by German rightists after World War I. They claimed that the German army had not really lost the war; it had been betrayed by Jews and Marxists on the home front. Trump is assigning blame for his potential defeat to a shadowy cabal that includes such groups as international bankers and ethnic minorities.
Burns agreed, saying that the Trump campaign is taking the playbook of the Nazi party to heart this cycle.
“Hitler said let’s make Germany great again,” said Burns. And so did former President Bill Clinton; is he a Nazi? Is demanding stronger border security and allowing federal agents and local law enforcement to enforce immigration laws Nazi-like policies? It’s just too easy to label someone who you really despise a Nazi. That’s lazy.
As you all know, I’m not a fan of Donald Trump, but a) I’m never voting for Hillary, nor am I voting for any third party candidate since they have no chance of beating Lady Macbeth (guess who that leaves?); and b) attacks likes these need pushback from everyone.
No, Donald Trump is not a Nazi. Kellyanne Conway, his campaign manager, is not a Nazi. We don’t have an Enabling Act and I’m sure Trump doesn’t have a vast conspiracy to set the Capitol Building on fire that would necessitate emergency powers. Historically, Hitler, who was already Chancellor, used the Reichstag Fire to eventually combine the office of the president and the chancellery, making him the horrid dictator we know today. But I’m not going to parse this hypothesis because it’s outright lunacy. Trump and his campaign isn’t a silent cabal of National Socialists.
Frankly, it’s quite disturbing that slogans like Make American Great Again, which, again, have been used by Bill Clinton—or any outward displays of patriotism—is construed as racist, wrong, or problematic to the American Left. When did loving one’s country become part of the criteria of proto-Nazi in America? Don’t know; don’t care because I’m not nuts unlike the scores of people who will vote for Hillary Clinton.