For someone who supposedly studied the Holocaust enough to write a book about the famed resister Dietrich Bonhoeffer, author Eric Metaxas continues to demonstrate his delusions about how America resembles Nazi Germany.
Under Donald Trump, some comparisons were valid — but not in the way he thinks.
The racist Christian MAGA cultist sucker-puncher guy asked the Atlantic‘s Emma Green to grant him an interview… and she agreed. But if the goal was to make himself look good, that plan failed the second he opened his mouth.
For example, Green asked Metaxas whether he sees himself as a rebel against the elite consensus. Metaxas responded:
I grew up in a working-class, immigrant environment. When I went to Yale, that was the first time I was among the so-called cultural elites. There really is a kind of enforced consensus. If you don’t think that way, you can quickly become persona non grata.
I wasn’t in D.C. for the Capitol riots. But I was blown away at how instantly anybody who supported Trump — which is, you know, half the country — was demonized as potential white domestic terrorists. I just thought, Holy cow. What am I, in Nazi Germany? This is really sick. That’s not what we do in America.
Condemning terrorism is apparently un-American to Metaxas. Not all Trump supporters forced their way into the Capitol — with weapons! — but those who continue to defend Trump are at the very least not bothered enough by those acts of domestic assault.
Metaxas went on:
This event happens, and before the smoke clears, we are using the opportunity — and I’m not talking about the Biden administration; I’m talking about the Democratic establishment and the media — instantly seizing on it to demonize, in the harshest terms, anyone who would support Trump. That just blew my mind. I thought: You don’t do that in America. That’s what the Nazis did with the Reichstag fire. Before the smoke cleared, they had already figured out who they were going to blame.
… because they were to blame. It wasn’t Biden supporters who stormed the Capitol, and it wasn’t Joe Biden egging them on in their violence. Trump did that. His allies did that. Many of the rioters took their cues from him. The media didn’t have to try to make them look bad; they let the selfies and rioters’ videos speak for themselves.
Metaxas is the sort of person who would blame a mirror for what it reveals about him.
It’s also ironic that he says he’s “not a newshound” as a way to excuse himself from admitting facts, then claims he has “seen enough” to know there’s reason to doubt the election results (there isn’t), then tells Green he’s “not the sort of person who followed [the court battles over the election] the way you did.”
He also can’t claim his tribe is persecuted (at least not with a straight face) when white evangelicals had complete control of the government for four years (and Christians, both Democrat and Republican, still dominate all three branches of government). White evangelicals only grew in their power and privilege while actual minorities — Jews, people of color, the LGBTQ community, families on food stamps — suffered the brunt of Trump’s policies and dog whistles in interviews. The same people that Bonhoeffer died to defend were still convenient scapegoats in Trump’s America.
If there’s anything to learn from Metaxas about Nazi Germany, it’s how so-called “good Christians” could make excuses for the intolerable and look away like nothing is happening.