by Irmgard A. Hunt
I read a review of this book on Cath's blog, Read_Warbler. (It's the 2nd review in the post.) She reviewed it in Sep 2009 and, though I bought it right after reading her review, I didn't read it until this month, almost 3 years later.
“The trigger that could tip the scale dangerously in such a direction might be a monstrous economic disaster or more fear-inspiring terrorist attacks providing the excuse to suspend or ignore the Constitution and to declare emergency powers like Hitler did in 1933 after the fire in the Reichstag. There might be a group or groups that would be demonized and become an excuse for extreme measures. In Germany it was the Jews. Here it might be terrorists or Muslims.
“And yes, I believe we are seeing danger signs all around us, from the Homeland Security Act that diminishes civil rights and increased surveillance to scare tactics that increase fear, acceptance of torture of prisoners, and acceptance of a war based on lies. Add to that litany the increasing political power of an intolerant, ideology-driven, fundamentalist right wing and we have a scenario that could spell the end of democracy as we know it.
“There are of course enormous differences between the United States now and Germany then. For one, the ultra-fascist, violent Storm Troopers (S.A.) who staged the Kristallnacht and spread violence before and after Hitler’s power grab do not now have an American equivalent. In addition, the extreme fear of an imminent Communist revolution that haunted the Germans in the twenties does not exist.
“Most importantly, the American people, unless they become completely brainwashed by their government and their fundamentalist religious leaders, are used to living in a democracy, to questioning, speaking up, protesting, marching, blowing the whistle, and pointing the finger.
“If we want to keep America free we must continue to do just that.”