Donald Trump has been a polarizing figure this election cycle. Since the early days of his longshot campaign and through his transformation to a serious contender, many have taken issue with his approach and demeanor. Whether it be a ban on Muslims, calling Senator Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas”, or having other names for those he dislikes, his style is different from the usual watered down politics America is used to.
Violated safe spaces aside, is Trump also an aspiring tyrant?
Green Day is a punk rock band that has been around for a couple of decades now, and in recent years lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong has been establishing himself as yet another liberal musician. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with differing views, Armstrong appears to have an overly simplistic view of the world.
In a recent interview, Billie Joe essentially labeled Trump supporters as shallow, describing Trump’s followers as poor, working class people who are just voting out of rage. While it’s likely true that many are upset, and rightfully so, it’s a stereotypical and simplistic way for Armstrong to view things.
And then he calls Trump “Hitler”. Apparently, Godwin’s Law has become a favorite among those on the left this election cycle. Armstrong goes on to support this accusation by citing Trump’s claims that he alone could fix all of America’s problems.
Long story short, claiming to be the one-man answer to everything is a characteristic of a dictator. Does that make him Hitler?
There are certainly parallels. Adolf Hitler rose to power preying on the defeated pride of Germans, promising to make Germany a strong and proud nation again. Trump rides similar rhetoric about making America great again.
Other parallels include hostility towards certain groups of people, being polarizing, hateful speech, and not having a filter. But the large difference is Hitler was quite anti-semitic and had an entire network in the Nazi Party of people advancing his views. Trump doesn’t have that.
There are actually Presidents in history that likely have more in common with Hitler than Trump.
President Barack Obama, according to Armstrong’s definition, is Hitler. Back when President Obama was attempting to advance his immigration agenda, he threatened to bypass Congress via executive order because they weren’t bending to his will.
The constitutional separation of powers wasn’t meant to be overcome by certain branches of government. This sort of one-man answer approach is what Billie Joe Armstrong would label as being like Hitler.
Another Democratic President that was more like Hitler is Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who actually enacted a racist internment policy. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt rounded up all American citizens of Japanese descent and forced them into internment camps.
There are additional examples, because, for well over a century, the presidency has become greatly centralized. It is a trend not restricted to Republicans or Democrats. Billie Joe Armstrong has it right with former President Bush doing things wrong, but it’s not just a Republican issue. From Roosevelt to Obama, a number of other examples exist, the general trend remains. It’s all an aspiring dictatorship.
If Donald Trump is Hitler, the United States of America has been a Nazi establishment for many presidencies now. Is this something that Billie Joe Armstrong is prepared to backup?