America First

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Dear Donald –

I couldn’t help but notice you made the phrase “America First” a primary part of your speech today. I really hope that was a turn of phrase that just appealed to you on some basic level, and that you had no idea of its historical roots in this country. To be fair, you’ve flirted with anti-Semitism before, but now that you’ve got the job, we had all hoped you’d stop playing footsie with Stormfront under the table. Maybe this was your parting wink, still playing coy after all these months. Maybe it was an honest mistake – it’s pretty widely known you don’t like to think too much about things. Giving you the benefit of the doubt, let me explain.

In 1940, there was a substantial debate in this country about whether or not to enter World War II. One of the non-interventionist groups was called the America First Committee. With Charles Lindbergh as its spokesman, the AFC believed that intervention would weaken American democracy and lessen our ability to defend ourselves at home. (Sound familiar?) Lindbergh gave speeches across the country arguing that we shouldn’t fight what was, ultimately, Europe’s war and that the people should beware of fancy speeches and articles in the paper. He said the media were dishonest and people should be looking at who owned them. (Two for two!) Then, in a September 1941 speech in Des Moines, Lindbergh laid it all out, saying that the people behind the dishonest media campaign were foreign governments (the British), the Democratic president (FDR), and Jews.

Of course, Lindbergh said he wasn’t anti-Semitic, or a Nazi sympathizer, but he just believed that they were using their positions in control of the news media and Hollywood to push for war. I feel like I’ve seen an ad recently that warned about a vast cabal controlling the world powers while featuring images of a Democratic President and prominent Jews. Which one could that be?

And then there was this one:

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I’m sure the historical parallels are just coincidental. An isolationist who distrusts the media and a Democratic President while revering a foreign strongman all while dropping hints of anti-Semitism?

And don’t try the whole “I can’t be anti-Semitic because my daughter’s Jewish” thing. We don’t believe it when people tell us all about their black friends, especially when they’re already wearing the white hood, so why believe you now?

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