At least that’s what Trump said today in a press conference where he reverted to what we must now accept he is: a Nazi sympathizer. That’s not hyperbole. What other conclusion can be drawn from his bizarre behavior today?
Watch this shocking, frightening video and make up your own mind whether the Nazi marchers are “fine people.”
All of this Nazi marching takes on a more sinister tone if you realize, as much as you might not have wanted to believe it before, that an office that once represented as the leader of the free world because of World War II is now held by a guy who, in effect, smears the memories of all who died in World War II.
Pretty 20-Something Barista: I don’t know what the picture on your tank top means but I like it. Me: It’s a wookie riding a giant squirrel fighting the Nazis. PTSB: That is the most absurd thing I’ve heard all week. I like it even more and get it even less. Me: Thank you.
That this tiny woman with a French accent radiates immense sweetness and optimism is even more remarkable after you learn that she lost her mother and father in the Holocaust. She and her younger brother (who is also a remarkably nice person) were both hidden by a Christian family in occupied France, so they were both spared while their parents perished. Not long ago that house where they were hidden from the Nazis was officially declared a historical site in a city outside Paris.
That someone who endured from a young age such crushing losses under the cruelest of circumstances, and yet can somehow turn out so full of love and hope, is a source of constant amazement to me.
That is always one of the great mysteries about enduring seemingly insurmountable personal hardship at a young age: for some it is a reason to turn inward after deciding that life is best lived without risk of connecting emotionally to a world that can be unpredictably callous. For others, it appears to be reason to embrace life as fully as it can be lived.
I’ve been thinking about this phenomenon a great deal recently because another connection to the world of Nazi hatred and shame announced last week he was resigning as Pope.
I am not one of those people who believes Pope Benedict’s history in the Hitler Youth is proof of anything more than the fact that many young people were enlisted in that movement because that is what you did in that time, in that place. I believe him when he says it was done only in the way those things were expected of young people his age, and that he is not an unreconstructed Nazi.
Pope Benedict, at that time known only as mere mortal Joseph Ratzinger, experienced the Nazis from the opposite side as my boyfriend’s kind Nana, but one suspects that in many people those opposing experiences might offer up some of the same choices in their aftermath: choose to live a life filled with the resentment, suspicion and the emotional violence that were emblematic of Nazi thought, or learn from the horrors you witnessed and rise above them to live a life that is about empathy toward the victimized and openness to the myriad differences that make the tapestry of human existence more colorful, textured and full.