Anti-fascist video from 1943 has been compared to Trump's presidency
After the tragic events that unfolded in Charlottesville last Saturday, it is more important than ever for us to band together to condemn the hateful actions of white supremacists.
Violent clashes broke out after a Unite the Right rally held by white nationalists was met by thousands of counter-protestors. The alt-right groups took to the city to protest the removal of a statue of the Confederate general Robert E. Lee.
Terry McAuliffe, Governor of the state of Virginia, was forced to declare a state of emergency late on Saturday morning when Heather Heyer was killed after white nationalist James Alex Fields ploughed his vehicle into a group of counter-protesters.
In response to this weekend's occurrences, people have taken to Twitter to share a video, entitled Don't Be a Sucker. The short film, which was produced by the Department of War in 1943 and re-released in 1947, explained how the Nazis were able to raise to power in Germany, insinuating that similar forces could just as easily take hold in the United States.
A clip from the anti-fascist educational film has been retweeted and shared thousands of times since anthropologist Michael Oman-Reagan first posted it on his Twitter account on Saturday afternoon. Oman-Reagan captioned the clip, "[the] 1947 anti-fascist video made by US military to teach citizens how to avoid falling for people like Trump is relevant again."
The short video opens with a man addressing a crowd, hoisting the country's issues on immigrants, African-Americans and Catholics. An impressionable young man is seen agreeing with the speaker's viewpoint, up until the speaker blames the freemasonry, as the young man in question is a freemason.
Later on, an older man from Hungary talks to the young man. He says, "I have seen what this kind of talk can do, I saw it in Berlin. I was a professor at the university. I heard the same words we have heard today.” He continues:
"I thought Nazis were crazy people, stupid fanatics. Unfortunately it was not so. They knew they were not strong enough to conquer a unified country, so they split Germany into small groups. They used prejudice as a practical weapon to cripple the nation."
Users of Twitter had quite the reaction to the video with many commenting on how perfectly it resonated with today's socio-political climate, despite being produced over sixty years ago:<
In the aftermath of the Charlottesville protests, politicians from across the globe have taken to social media to denounce the ideology behind white supremacist groups, however, US President Donald Trump was heavily criticised for his failure to name-and-shame those involved. On Saturday, he said that "many sides" were to blame for the violence. The White House hastily corrected his statement on Monday by calling out specific white nationalist groups.
It's evident that those of us who subscribe to democratic and liberal modes of thought must band together to ensure that racism or prejudice of any kind is not tolerated in our society.