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Sun Apr 11, 2021, 12:54 PM

Trump's Big Lie and Hitler's: Is this how America's slide into totalitarianism begins?

Trump's Big Lie and Hitler's: Is this how America's slide into totalitarianism begins?
Hitler undermined democracy by lying about World War I; Trumpists want to do it by lying about the 2020 election
https://www.salon.com/2021/04/11/trumps-big-lie-and-hitlers-is-this-how-americas-slide-into-totalitarianism-begins/

It is a question I often hear people ask during conversations about the rise of Adolf Hitler: If I had been alive in Germany when the Nazis took power, would I have had the courage to side against them?

Thanks to the 2020 presidential election, there is now a convenient way to answer that query. Hitler rose to power because he told a Big Lie. Millions of people believed that Big Lie because they held more sinister beliefs; millions more likely didn't believe it, but weren't willing to denounce it as an outright lie at the time.

The same dynamic is true regarding Donald Trump's claim that Joe Biden stole the election from him. It is a Big Lie being embraced to advance a racist, anti-democratic agenda. Anyone who doesn't stand up to that Big Lie today would have likely been complicit in Hitler's Big Lie last century. Anyone who actually believes Trump's Big Lie ... do I need to finish that sentence?

A lot of prominent Republicans who are trying to worm their way around this issue by not quite saying they believe the Big Lie, but rather that it is somehow validated by the fact that many other people agree with it. Shortly before Trump egged on his supporters to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas argued that America should rely on a white nationalist precedent to resolve the election (presumably in Trump's favor) because "recent polling shows that 39 percent of Americans believe the election that just occurred, quote, was rigged. You may not agree with that assessment. But it is nonetheless a reality for nearly half the country."

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas made a similar argument one month later. In a dissent about a case regarding the use of mail-in ballots in the swing state of Pennsylvania, Thomas wrote that "an election free from strong evidence of systemic fraud is not alone sufficient for election confidence," but that people on the losing side of an election need "the assurance that fraud will not go undetected." Never mind that there is literally no evidence that mail-in voting being particularly susceptible to fraud. Thomas' argument was essentially the same as Cruz's: Even if there isn't evidence of fraud, if one side claims the other side might have stolen an election, that's enough to justify making it harder for the other side to vote.

Let's call these things what they are: Attempts by Republican officials to exploit Trump's Big Lie to create permanent Republican rule, but without quite saying that they agree with the Big Lie itself. But even if such prominent Republicans don't flat-out say that the Big Lie is true, refusing to denounce it emboldens more people to believe it and emboldens policymakers to change society based around it.

snip//

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Reply Trump's Big Lie and Hitler's: Is this how America's slide into totalitarianism begins? (Original post)
dajoki Apr 11 OP
NQAS Apr 11 #1
dajoki Apr 11 #2
triron Apr 11 #3
Dan Apr 11 #4
TheRealNorth Apr 11 #5

Response to dajoki (Original post)

Sun Apr 11, 2021, 01:44 PM

1. Articles like this need to stop posing it as a question.

Trump and republicans big lie: This is how American slides into totalitarianism.

As many have commented over the past five years, now we know how it happened in Germany in the 1930s. It is now happening here.

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Response to NQAS (Reply #1)

Sun Apr 11, 2021, 01:55 PM

2. I don't think it is asking...

specifically how America slides into totalitarianism, I believe they are asking what people would do personally. More like there are people who actually believe the Big Lie and then there are those who just go along even though they know it is a lie.

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Response to dajoki (Reply #2)

Sun Apr 11, 2021, 02:50 PM

3. Americans are just as willing to buy into the 'big lie' as the Germans were. Or just don't care.

Same result.

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Response to dajoki (Original post)

Sun Apr 11, 2021, 04:04 PM

4. I have ofttimes wondered if Clarence Thomas

Realized that if Trump (and the GOP) had their way, Clarence would be in the ovens with the rest of us?

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Response to Dan (Reply #4)

Sun Apr 11, 2021, 04:10 PM

5. They GOP always have space for a Mammy or a Prissy

(reference to "Gone with the Wind" )

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