When I was a kid and watching the miniseries "Holocaust," I sat there and yelled at the screen. "Why don't you leave?" I'd yell. "Get out, don't you see what's coming?" Now I'm older, and I understand human nature and the power of denial.
Morning Joe regular Donny Deutsch sounded a warning to Jews supporting Donald Trump. He pointed out the crowd at Trump's rally last night.
"There's not one person of color anywhere. Like, usually behind him he puts one kind of token in there, a token person. If you scan this crowd, this is stunning," he said. "It is -- if you go not even behind him, but through the thousands and thousands of people. And this, to me, looked like a rally from the early '30s.
"You know, Joe, I was watching the first hour. And as Jay Johnson was talking about, comparing to Hitler. And you know, that's something you cautiously do, because we can use the word fascist, but then when you go 'Hitler,' you can't -- oh, everybody starts to go -- but what was going on in early '30s Germany?" he said.
"Basically, you had a destruction of the belief in the free press. You had a blurring between the executive branch and the Justice Department. You have creating an 'other,' whether it's Muslims, whether it's Mexicans, whether it's congressmen who weren't born in this country. And then you have the destruction of free elections. and we're here.
"And what is the difference between Adolph Hitler and Donald Trump? I'm not saying there's a holocaust, but when you look at the tactics. And that is where we are right now. And as we are heading 39 days from election, this is where we have. and we still have people chanting, okay.
"And on a personal level, and I for a second want to talk to my Jewish friends who are voting for Donald Trump. How dare you? How dare you, with what our people have gone through in history, and you see a man who is a dictator. and once you give a man absolute power, he is possible of anything. And if you are a Jew in this country and you are supporting Donald Trump, you are not looking back at our history.
"And you are blind and you are walking like a lemming off a cliff. It is time to wake up. I'm sorry. This is where we are. there is no difference from what Donald Trump is preaching, from what Adolf Hitler preached in the early '30s. Let's just say it, once and for all."
You may not know who Joel Silberman was. He died a few years ago, but he was well known to bloggers and progressive Democrats as the go-to man for media training. We were friends, and the day Donald Trump came down the golden elevator, he called me.
"Susie, he can win. He can win, and he's a very dangerous man," he told me. "He's a genius at manipulating the media. He will destroy the country if he wins."
I pushed back. "Oh, come on. You really think Donald Trump has the attention span to stay in the race?" I said.
But he was insistent; as a New Yorker, and as a media expert, he'd been watching Trump for a long time.
The next day, after watching Trump on TV, I called Joel back. "You were right," I said. "He's a dangerous man, and he can win." And yes, we used the F word: Fascism. We used it throughout his candidacy.
And I never again doubted what Trump was capable of. Nice to see that everyone else is finally catching up.