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history

Fascism as Fear: Nazi Persecution of the Disabled

Context: The First into the dark (link to pdf)

Fascism as acute and pathological fear of otherness is perhaps nowhere so clearly illustrated as an interrogation of these facts reveal. I do wonder if the identification of historical horrors at times causes us to distance ourselves from them, even as we warily unveil and as though by inadvertently sterile metric or abstract literary measurement identify the depth of their ethical void by such records of cruelty. My point being that the ugly truth here is not merely (or only) that human beings were once capable of such evil, as similarly repugnant horrors have been inflicted serially and with uncanny frequency in our shared planetary history, but that the burden of knowledge is haunted without the willingness to interdict and act against malevolence when it returns.

The evil (as visceral fear rendered into violence) is quite endemically human and much as with the wildness in William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, bubbles away just under the surface quite able and ready to emerge when circumstances or political influences dictate.

I wish that every such focus of knowledge as though light “through a glass darkly” might cultivate some kind of collective immunity against the eternal return of brutal regimes.

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