Adolf Hitler also published a list of crimes committed by groups he didn’t like

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tags: Hitler, immigration, Trump



In his Tuesday speech, President Trump was light on specifics, except when it came to one of his favorite subjects — crimes committed by immigrants.

Trump celebrated the creation of the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement office, or VOICE. It will, among other things, put out a regular report on the illicit doings of the undocumented. “I have ordered the Department of Homeland Security to create an office to serve American victims,” he said. “We are providing a voice to those who have been ignored by our media and silenced by special interests." (It will be paid for by money spent, in the Obama years, on advocating for undocumented immigrants.)

The program is controversial (when Trump referenced it Tuesday, Democrats groaned). There's no evidence that immigrants commit crimes at a higher rate than native-born Americans, and critics worry the reports will skew public opinion unfairly. “Let's be clear about what Donald Trump is doing,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) wrote on Facebook. “He is stirring up fear and hatred against immigrants and trying to divide our nation.”

There's a reason Trump's opponents are so worried. This strategy — one designed to single out a particular group of people, suggesting that there's something particularly sinister about how they behave — was employed to great effect by Adolf Hitler and his allies. In the 1930s, the Nazis used a similar tactic to stir up anger and hatred toward Jews. Professor Richard Weikart of California State University explained that Nazi leaders used different kinds of communication tools to sell the message that “Jews are criminal by disposition,” as a 1943 Nazi directive to the German press put it. “The Jews are not a nation like other nations but bearers of hereditary criminality,” the order said. Germany, in other words, was out of control, and only Nazi anti-Semitic policies could “restore order.”




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