Nazis Are Really Bad At Hide And Seek

Nazis Are Really Bad At Hide And Seek
Photo by Prometheus 🔥 / Unsplash

I'm not convinced that neo-Nazis have developed object permanence.

They seem to struggle with the fact that just because they're not in our faces, sporting swastika armbands and knee-high boots, it doesn't mean we don't know that they're Nazis.

They seem to think we won't recognize what they're doing as long as they're not goose-stepping around the middle of the town square. If they're not actively doing the Hitler salute and screaming 'Sieg heil,' they seem to think they've cleverly swum under the radar.

It reminds me of a toddler with chocolate frosting smeared all over her face, insisting that she didn't eat the cake and she has no idea who did! It's a total mystery, mom!

Of course, there's nothing about Nazi ideology that's subtle or difficult to spot. It's not a belief system designed for secrecy; it's meant to be bold, powerful and upfront about itself.

As a result, modern-day adherents are about as good at hiding as your average bull in a china shop. If it quacks like a duck...

And they do. Often and loudly.

The argument that many of these people make is that the Nazi party is a specific movement that no longer exists. We destroyed it in 1945, and thus there are no more Nazis.

Some even go so far as to say that unless you were marching Holocaust victims to the train cars or standing guard at Auschwitz, you could never be considered a Nazi.

They say that 'the left' is hysterical, seeing Nazis around every corner, or that 'the left' accuses anyone who disagrees with us of being a Nazi.

Here's the thing. Just because the original Third Reich is no longer around, that doesn't mean Nazism itself has died off—quite the opposite. And even further, these arguments act like the Nazi party just popped up out of nowhere and swept Germany up overnight.

This simply isn't the case; the Nazi party started as a small, fringe group of conspiracy theorists who took advantage of societal discontent to gain power. They used economic panic to urge the German people to blame scapegoated minorities for their woes, which is something that politicians on the right continue to do to this day.

It took them years of slow build-up and a gradual escalation to establish themselves. Hitler was initially regarded as something of a buffoon, easily ignored by the establishment until he'd built up too large a following to blow off.

Hell, he even tried to take power via a failed coup attempt. He didn't truly become popular until after his stint in prison, which he used to earn sympathy points and drum up support.

Am I making you nervous yet?

Nazism is an ideology. It is a philosophy, worldview and political theory of its own. Just because the titular Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiter-Partei is gone doesn't mean their stated beliefs died with them.

Quoting from the Encyclopedia Britannica article on Nazism:

Nazism’s ideology was shaped by Hitler’s beliefs in German racial superiority and the dangers of communism. It rejected liberalism, democracy, the rule of law, and human rights, stressing instead the subordination of the individual to the state and the necessity of strict obedience to leaders. It emphasized the inequality of individuals and “races” and the right of the strong to rule the weak.
The origins, principles, and ideology of Nazism
Nazism, or National Socialism , Totalitarian movement led by Adolf Hitler as head of Germany’s Nazi Party (1920–45).

Some of that sounds mighty familiar.

In effect, Nazism is essentially just fascism with a German coat of paint.

Fascism is a far-right authoritarian political philosophy. Learn about the history and principles of fascism and its implementation in Nazi Germany.

Fascism promotes many of the same ideals: the individual is subservient to the nation, cultural and racial homogeneity is vital, gender roles must be strictly adhered to, and democracy is the enemy.

We hear all of this coming out of the mouths of modern-day far-right pundits on the daily.

That's not even counting the out-and-proud marchers who openly self-identify as neo-Nazis. We saw them marching around Charlottesville, chanting 'Blood and Soil' like grown-up Hitler Youths.

‘Blood and soil’: Protesters chant Nazi slogan in Charlottesville | CNN
Some white nationalists and right-wing protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, have been using a Nazi rallying cry as they shout, “blood and soil.”

We see them regularly at anti-trans rallies, marching up and down the lane and performing the Hitler salute in front of bigoted speakers who refuse to make them leave.

They even speak at those events, welcomed with open arms for the sake of spreading their poisonous rhetoric to an adoring crowd. White nationalism, anti-LGBTQ+ bigotry and fascism are routinely shown to have a strong link in today's political arena.

Just like they were linked back in the 1930s, during Hitler's rise to power.

Self-described ‘nationalist’ speaks at anti-trans rights rally on Victoria parliament steps
Matthew Trihey, former member of the Lads Society, opened the #WomenWillSpeak event in Melbourne on Saturday

And further, we see people who don't publicly identify as Nazis who nevertheless spread the same kind of hateful talking points with fearless abandon.

We see antisemitic conspiracy theories spread about George Soros on Fox News. We hear speakers at the RNC saying that 'transgenderism must be eradicated from public life.'

A goddamn bridge collapsed in Baltimore a few days ago, taken out because a goddamn cargo ship crashed into it, and some people are trying to blame DEI training, immigration and the 'woke mob' for the destruction.

Baltimore Bridge Collapse Blamed On DEI As The Attack On DEI Continues
After news of the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse in Baltimore, some have blamed the incident on DEI. This article explores this in more detail.

If that doesn't count as rejecting human rights and liberalism, then I don't know what would qualify. If that doesn't speak to a reverence for 'racial purity', then I can't imagine what would.

Please understand; when we call out people as Nazis, we're not trying to claim that they're out there taking part in a systemic mass murder on par with the Holocaust. There aren't gas chambers out there; nobody is rounding up minorities for execution yet.

But then we see people in positions of power espousing Nazi rhetoric, even using quotes based on literal Hitler speeches, like Trump:

Trump on ‘poisoning the blood’ remarks: ‘I never knew that Hitler said it’
The former president said Friday that he didn’t know Hitler had used the term, but he has repeated it throughout the week after the comparison was made by critics.

We call it out because failing to do so allows it to spread.

We want to emphasize how serious these issues are, how dangerous this talk is, and how important it is that this hateful nonsense not be allowed to set roots and endure.

There's a reason Nazi iconography and Holocaust denialism is illegal in Germany: they know what happens when you let it slide and treat it like it isn't a big deal.

We don't need to see swastikas, hear the 'Sieg heil,' or watch a line of arms go up in the ol' Hitler salute to recognize that Nazism is alive and well. We see the most extreme, reactionary rhetoric excused and accepted by the far-right every day.

We see them shake hands with the Proud Boys, praise self-described fascists and preach that immigrants are vermin, invading the borders like a plague of locusts. We see them say that doctors who perform abortions or assist in gender transition should be jailed or even killed.

We see them droning on about the glorious past that their nations once had and how they could get them back if only they could go back to the way things used to be. Make their countries great again, as it were.

And the conservatives shrug, say the rest of us are making it out to be a more significant issue than it is and do nothing to push them away.

As the saying goes, if you have ten people at a table and a Nazi is welcome to sit with them, then you have eleven Nazis at a table.

Solidarity wins.