A ACLU Paper of October 1934: Teaches us how to address Nazis today!
It is hard to believe, but it is true that, President Donald J. Trump, who says there are good people and great people within groups of White Supremacists, White Nationalists and Nazis; because of this are obviously racist. There are only fools, that can deny that now. Those who do is apologists for the President and his fellow complicit aides. This could be said for a number of reasons, also because of the people around him, and not denouncing fellow leadership of organizations who spread hatred in the United States.
President Trump has clearly supported the ‘Unite the Right’ rally in Charlottesville and the way it has been done with violence. Clearly, shows the problems of the alt-right and the neo-Nazis. Still, the ACLU of old, are still with their wisdom showing how a just and free society should make sure their transgressions and their hatred get perceived in society. The ACLU in the 1934 shows their paper on free speech for Nazis are still relevant today. It shouldn’t be, but clearly it is. Because the ideals of the ACLU are noble and shows the openness, to a society where ideas get spread and get to streets. Still, there should be allowed to address the differences without breaching the laws and statutes of the law. If so, then the Nazis should serve for their crime, as all of the ones who breaks the law.
The ideal of ACLU of 1934, the argument and the approach are one of the best I have read, even if it is in defense of despicable, this was done before the holocaust and all the hatred of the Nazis was known. Before, they could do so, when they took to power in Germany and started their dictatorship that led to the second World War. Still, with the knowledge of the results of all the hatred and disgusting ideals and ideology, the ACLU shows with their paper, an understanding we should follow in this day. Not because the streets, the airways, the TV-Channels or any other platform should have Nazis and their teachings on their, but if should mock it or fact-check their ignorance. Than it needs to be in the open and not make it underground to grow into an unknown force, that can come with militias and destroy the freedom of speech.
This is what the ACLU of 1934 believed and we should be like that today. Just take a look!
“To whose who advocate suppressing propaganda they hate, we ask – where do you draw the line? They can answer only the terms of revolutionists – at our political enemies. But experience shows that “political enemies” is a broad term, and has covered the breaking up even of working class meetings by rival work class organizations. It illustrates the danger, and the impractically of making any distinctions in defending rights sought by all” (…) “To those who urge suppression of meetings that may incite riot or violence, the complete answer is that nobody can tell in advance what meetings may do so. Where there is reasonable ground for apprehension, the police can ordinarily prevent disorder” (…) “To whose who would suppress meetings where race or religious hatred is likely to be stirred up, the answer is simple – that there is no general agreement on what constitutes race or religious prejudice. Once the bars are so let down, the fields is open for all-comers to charge such prejudice against any propagandists – Communists, Socialists, atheists, – even against Jews attacking the Nazis. On that ground the Union has opposed the anti-Nazi bills introduced in the New York and New Jersey legislature punishing propaganda which “stirs up race or religious hatred” or “domestic strife”. No laws can be written to outlaw Nazi propaganda without striking at freedom of speech in general” (…) “Further, we point out the inevitable effect of making martyrs by persecution. Persecute the Nazis, drive them underground, imitate their methods in Germany – and attract to them hundreds of sympathizers with the persecuted who would otherwise be indifferent. The best way to combat their propaganda is in the open where it can be fought by counter-propaganda, protest demonstrations, picketing, – and all the devices of attack which do not involve denying the rights to meet and speak” (…) “If and when Nazi meetings results in breaches of the peace, their organizers can be prosecuted under the criminal law. If their speakers libel individuals by reason of race and religion, recourse to the criminal libel statutes is open as a remedy. Short of that, and of overt acts of interference with others’ rights their freedom to carry on their agitation should be unrestricted” (ACLU, 1934).
It is proof that the knowledge and the arguments of old can be useful today as it was yesterday. The people, the organizations and their ideals might be the same, the problem might be a resurrected one. But the Nazis should be allowed to speak and have their meetings, as long as they are not breaching the law and the statutes. If they do, then they should be prosecuted!
The ACLU of 1934, have understood certain aspects of life and also the martyrdom of the political enemies and revolutionaries might give soil for further extremes. Also, give the platform and the leadership of these organization more power. Therefore, to silence them totally and ban them, does not make them go away, but make them underground.
This paper shows the importance of free speech, but also the grandeur of fighting the Nazis within just acts, to counter their propaganda and their ideology. That we should do, undress the hatred and white supremacy, which should be buried. Since the Nazi ideology shouldn’t be needed to be in our time, as it wasn’t needed even in the 1930s when the ALCU wrote this paper. Still, we should counter it and show the misgivings and the worthlessness of the Nazism, instead of banning it. The bans of their acts will only enforce it more.
It doesn’t help that President Trump defended the Charlottesville ‘Unite the Right’ rally and their violence. While attacking the counter-demonstrators. Also, neglecting the fear and the violence created by the right-extremists. That is why peaceful marches, the peaceful demonstrations and addressing the lacking clues of justification for their ideology and their belief is needed. Instead, of making them a fringe organizations, who can suddenly pop-up like wild-flowers. Therefore, the need to address them at public courts are more important than ever. To not give them a free-pass, but for their disgrace, their misunderstood arrogance of race and for their devilish ideology, who are to take total control and to terminate others. That cannot be shadow and put in the dark, the violence and viciousness of the Nazis, cannot be silenced and their will of doing evil. Should be known!
To say anything else is ignorant, they should not become martyrs, but make fooled and mocked. They should understand, that they are not all-powerful, but people we can bring down from the pedestal and put in the trash-bind of history. Peace.
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) – ‘Shall we defend free speech for Nazis in America’ (October 1934