As we have slowly settled into the uncomfortable realization that a larger than life megalomaniac and almost certifiable lunatic will soon be the POTUS, one thing we can put to bed is that he is not a Nazi.
Nazi’s committed crimes based on the ideal that there was only one right race. It was an idea based solely on the idea of differences. Different races, different ideologies, different religions, etc. and those that were different must perish.
Now Trump, for all his many many faults, seems at least open to differences, but stick with me here, Trump has more Fascist tendencies. The difference between a Nazi and a Fascist is subtle but distinct enough.
In his book Heroes: Mass Murder and Suicide, theorist and media activist Franco Berardi points out that Nazism is “…essentially based on the negation of the human nature of the other…” In other words, it was predicated upon sameness and those that are not the same must perish (to which the Nazi’s did with profound accuracy).
Berardi points out that Fascism, being difficult to identify, because “…at its core is exactly the obsession of identification. Rather than specific national, religious or ethnic identities, it is the very process of national identification, religious identification and ethnic identification that has led to dangerous historical game playing, often culminating in war and slaughter.” (Make America Great Again, anyone?).
Going further to say that “Fascism is based on the aggressive inclusion of the other, and the punishment and extermination of those who refuse to be included.”
In other words, “GET IN LINE MOTHERFUCKER!”
Now granted, neither a Nazi nor a Fascist are ideal traits in a leader but if I were to fear one more than the other in this particular individual it would be Fascism. Fascism has a more nebulous definition and potential unilateral application.
Through his Tweets, Trump has time and time again aggressively pointed out that those that differ from him will in some way be punished (as if reading the tweets and seeing them broadcast as “news” isn’t punishment enough).
We have seen him take the media and hold their feet to the fire for doing nothing other than their job…a job that they were, and still are, barely doing. We’ve seen him, via Twitter, unleash his petulance on Saturday Night Live in sketches about him he deems “unfunny” (when in fact, they were one of the few funny things remaining on that relic of a show).
As we come upon our day of reckoning when that man gets sworn in, I fear we are staring straight into the camera at the beginning of the darkest Black Mirror episode.
But as we stare out into that abyss it’s time to stop referring to Donald Trump as a Nazi. His actions and Tweets (and I still can’t believe that Twitter is a viable communication platform for a newly elected president, but…whatever…let’s hope he never gets a grasp of Snapchat) point in a direction that differs from Nazism and stinks of what could very easily become Fascism.
Stay awake. Stay alert. Stay alarmed.