Letter to the Editor:

Godwin’s Law states that virtually any debate on the internet with a thread of sufficient length will ultimately draw a comparison to Adolf Hitler. 

Attorney Mike Godwin, who coined the phrase (or wrote the law, so to speak) was attempting to discourage the inherently hyperbolic use of comparisons to Hitler or Nazi Germany, which inevitably trivializes the holocaust. 

Unfortunately, President Donald Trump’s recent executive order, Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE) is a page taken directly from Hitler’s playbook.

“Der Sturmer” was a potent propaganda tool used primarily to foment hatred for Jews. It was a tabloid-format Nazi newspaper promoted by Hitler and published by Julius Streicher, a Nazi official, whose antisemitic articles and caricatures were so vile that Streicher was later convicted by the Nuremberg Court for crimes against humanity and was subsequently executed.

Through VOICE, Trump, with his entourage of white supremacists, is developing a file of all criminal activities by Muslims in the United States with the obvious intent of encouraging racial profiling by law enforcement and inciting fear, hatred and paranoia in the American populace. 

While this does not equate to genocide, it does parallel Hitler’s early campaign, before implementation of “the final solution” (extermination of the Jews). 

Couple this with the Muslim ban, alternative facts, delegitimization of the press and the destructive potential of a thin-skinned, reactionary individual with his finger on the nuclear trigger and Godwin’s Law is no longer applicable. 

Trump is ostensibly the leader of the free world. This executive order is simply unacceptable. I would like to call it unprecedented, but its die was cast in the 1930s.

Terrance Moe 

Conover