The frightening parallels between the horrors of Nazi Germany and the words of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump are becoming more obvious every day.
The hate filled speeches, the endless blaming of those who are “different,” the xenophobic rants of nationalism. It just feels increasingly obvious that history is trying to repeat itself.
The tragic story of Anne Frank has become famous all over the world through the poignant journal written by the young teenage girl. She and her family were trying to escape the Nazis as they rounded up and murdered Jews in Germany. The family escaped from Frankfurt to the Netherlands, trying to gain asylum in the United States.
Documents prove that Otto Frank, Anne’s father, asked for help from a relative living in Boston. He applied for a visa to the United States in 1941.
After hiding in an Amsterdam attic for two years, still hoping for asylum for his family, Otto Frank, his wife, and his two young girls were discovered and sent to a concentration camp. Otto’s wife and the two girls died in the camp, but he had to live with that loss. He died in 1980.
So why was this desperate family kept out of the United States when the whole world knew the danger they faced? Why were they turned away when they begged for help?
American University history professor Richard Breitman told NPR that during the early war years, the U.S. was making it more and more difficult to immigrate. He blames that on rising xenophobia and a fear of those who are different. He blames it on a desire to protect our own borders.
Doesn’t that sound remarkably familiar?
If Anne Frank had been given the chance to start a new life here in the U.S. she would most likely have moved to Boston, where she had family and friends. She might well have become a writer.
If she hadn’t been slaughtered along with millions of others who were hated just for their religion, Anne Frank would be 77 years old now.
While she was in hiding in that small attic in Amsterdam, young Anne wrote these words in her journal:
“In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the sufferings of millions and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again.”
When Donald J. Trump promises to build that wall, think of Anne Frank. When he vows to ban all Muslims from entering this country, no matter how much horror they are running away from in their war torn countries, think of Anne Frank.
History is trying to repeat itself.
We have to stop it.
The language used in the following video will shock you with its similarity to the words of Donald Trump.