The beginning of a potential nightmare is now reality, because we’re living in a time where the Holocaust Museum feels compelled to warn about a reanimated and growing form of fascism in our midst.
As white supremacist figures are enjoying their normalization by certain media outlets, people are finally starting to feel comfortable again giving Nazi salutes in public.
Three days before Thanksgiving, the Holocaust Museum released a statement directly calling out the leader of the so-called “alt-right” movement. But the statement ignored that tame moniker altogether and referred to Richard Spencer and his ilk as “white nationalist.”
Watch this video, come to terms with the terrifying nightmare we're currently in. https://t.co/T1O0fravxh
— Owen Jones (@OwenJones84) November 22, 2016
Just two days before on November 19, Spencer’s National Policy Institute held a conference at the Ronald Reagan Building in D.C.
According to press reports, Richard Spencer, the leader of the National Policy Institute – a white nationalist think tank – that sponsored the conference, made several direct and indirect references to Jews and other minorities, often alluding to Nazism. He spoke in German to quote Nazi propaganda and refer to the mainstream media. He implied that the media was protecting Jewish interests and said, “One wonders if these people are people at all?” He said that America belongs to white people. His statement that white people face a choice of “conquer or die” closely echoes Adolf Hitler’s view of Jews and that history is a racial struggle for survival.
The Museum went on to remind readers that we’ve seen this kind of rhetoric against Jews before, adding that’s always extended to other groups as well.
“By the end of World War II, the Germans and their collaborators had murdered six million Jews and millions of other innocent civilians, many of whom were targeted for racial reasons,” the statement continued.
The Holocaust did not begin with killing; it began with words. The Museum calls on all American citizens, our religious and civic leaders, and the leadership of all branches of the government to confront racist thinking and divisive hateful speech.
Read the full statement here.