Written by recurring contributor, friend of the blog, and friend, Jerry Gettinger -
In the late 1920's to the early 1930's a political movement called "The National Socialist Party" formed in a Germany that had been defeated and humiliated from a war and then economically torn asunder by inflation. The Nazi's, as they were to be called, promised prosperity and stability. An Austrian house painter named Adolph Hitler soon emerged as its leader.
Hitler's obsessive hatred of Jews soon translated into an explanation of the economic turmoil gripping the country. Soon the Nazis gained political recognition and began a systematic dehumanizing of Jews and other minorities. Laws were passed preventing Jews from owning businesses and denying citizenship to Jews. The torching of the Bundestag gave Hitler the excuse to declare martial law. The rest is history.
It is most interesting that there are similarities between the Tea Party and the rise of National Socialism. The Tea Party has come about from frustration of the middle class with the economic situation. The fact that we have been at war for such a long period adds to that emotion. There is the promise of prosperity from its leaders if the country takes a simple approach. (Reduce spending, cut taxes) Illegal immigration is identified as the root of many problems. The tea party has systematically dehumanized Latinos by calling them "aliens." The words "fathers, sons, mothers, daughters" are not heard. An additional stigma is placed by denying them the basic services we citizens enjoy. (Sound familiar?)
There are differences. Germany had a homogeneous population, ours is not. Hiter's anti-Semitism was met with almost unanimous acceptance. The tea party is not accepted by a unanimous population. The rush to do the Tea Party's bidding by our politicians is distressing. The signing away of our representatives' vote to an unelected person is comparable to the rush to join the Nazi party by the general bureaucracy. That similarity is chilling. The Tea Party is far from becoming a rerun of Germany. However, the framework is there. When viewed objectively, the similarities cannot be ignored.
The reaction of non-Party members is either denial or the it-can't-happen-here mantra. Maybe so, but....from my perspective, I think we should double the guard at the Capitol.