One Election, 85 Million Die

This letter is paid content. “Those who do not remember the past are CONDEMNED to repeat it,” warns George Santayana at Dachau’s Concentration Camp Memorial. Today almost two thirds of Americans 18 to 39 don’t know six million Jews were killed by Nazis during the Holocaust. (The Guardian 9/16/2020) President Trump thought WWII ended in 1918 with the Spanish Flu. (Speech, 9/2020) and didn’t know the significance of Pearl Harbor. (Business Insider 1/15/2020) Obviously the past is being forgotten.

As a former German teacher and student of German history, I’ve personally seen the horrors caused by citizens’ ignorance and gullibility when manipulated by Fascist leaders. The results are bone-chilling. If Germans would have opposed Hitler before he was legally elected, perhaps 85 million lives would have been saved. (National WWII Museum). In Dachau I swore a personal oath to fight Nazism and Fascism whenever they arose. They’re now in America.

The Trump Administration has followed Hitler’s plan. Step One: Create a “persecuted Us vs. evil Them” mentality and develop scapegoats. In Germany this was the Treaty of Versailles and Jews. Trump’s campaign launched attacking Mexicans, “bringing drugs…crime. They’re rapists,” and spread to Muslims and other immigrants. Without proof, he blames Democrats and the free press for being “out to get him.” Anyone who opposes him is an evil liar; it’s all a hoax or a witch hunt.

Step Two: Shift loyalty from Country and Constitution to himself. Nazis swore loyalty oaths to the Fuehrer. Heil Hitler! Trump repeatedly demands individuals (Comey, McCabe, Cohen, Fauci, Sessions, Barr, and countless others) swear loyalty to him, often against the Constitution, and fires, bullies and threatens those who dare offer facts or contrary opinions. He has filled his Cabinet and government agencies with people whose primary job qualification is loyalty to him.

Step Three: Control the press. Hitler had Goebbels. After trying to ban opposing media, Trump has destroyed information contrary to his cause by creating doubt in EVERYTHING but Twitter and Fox News. Labeling the free press “Enemy of the People” is NOT something someone who values the First Amendment does.

Step Four: Create biased courts to replace Constitutional rights with his law. Hitler also emphasized “law and order.” His Gestapo (Secret Federal Police) arrested individuals who were then declared guilty of some new infraction and sent to concentration camps for “re-education.” Trump has tried Gestapo methods. In Seattle and Portland unidentified feds arrested peaceful protesters, not giving reasons or reading rights. He has appointed highly-partisan federal judges and is pushing an ultra-conservative Supreme Court Justice weeks before the election. The purpose? To protect him, not our rights.

Step Five: Glorify the Cause. With candlelight processions, rabid speeches, flag-flying, Deutschland Ueber Alles! (Germany above all!) Hitler created hyper-patriotism. Trump uses rabid rallies, scapegoats’ and opponents’ name-calling, flags, hats, signs, “MAGA.” The reality is since he took office, global perception of the U.S. has fallen to a 20-year low. (BBC, 9/15/2020)

Step Six: Brainwash the public. Constant misinformation and “re-education” camps did it in Germany. Trump has told 20,000+ lies (Fact Checker, Washington Post 7/13/2020) and created mistrust in all American institutions. Now he’s proposing “Patriotic Education.” We already have this; it’s called Civics. It teaches the Constitution guarantees a checks and balances system with three EQUALLY-IMPORTANT branches of government, that presidents can only be elected for two 4-year terms, and that EVERY citizen has the right and responsibility to vote freely. Our Bill of Rights guarantees free speech and our right to peacefully protest. Would his “patriotic education” teach something different?

Step Seven is ready to launch: Declare martial law. In 1933 when a Communist sympathizer burned the Reichstag (German Parliament), an act many believed Hitler orchestrated, Hitler suspended all civil rights, claiming Communists were trying to overtake Germany. Trump is orchestrating civil unrest (Seattle, NY, Portland), promoting vigilantes like Proud Boys, and creating mistrust of the upcoming election. Citing past election fraud, which has been disproven by virtually all states’ election commissions many times, he claims his loss could only be caused by cheating, and threatens to suspend the ballot count…because the “evil Them” are trying to overtake the government. Pure Hitler!

According to, “Nazism is one form of fascism. Fascist leaders gain support by appealing to people’s nationalism and racism, especially by promoting suspicion or hatred of people they label as foreigners or otherwise cast as illegitimate citizens.” Since Trump’s election white nationalist groups have grown by 55%. (SPLC)

We can’t forget history! Choose wisely to reject Trump’s fascism and preserve democracy, or after November, the 4th Reich may be coming to a neighborhood near you.

Linda Uscola, Menahga