America First slogan origin

borosp1

Senior member
Apr 12, 2003
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71
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I just found an interesting fact about Trump's and many of the Republican's supporters use of the term "America First" has its origin from the 1930' - 1940's and its relation to Nazism and isolationism. Not surprising as history repeats itself and Trump is not an original person in co-opting phrases to his own benefit.

During the early 1930s, as the Nazis consolidated control over Germany, the U.S. media baron William Randolph Hearst began touting the slogan “America First” against President Franklin Roosevelt, whom he saw as dangerously likely to “allow the international bankers and the other big influences that have gambled with your prosperity to gamble with your politics.” Hearst regarded Roosevelt’s New Deal as “un-American to the core” and “more communistic than the communists” — unlike Nazism, which he believed had won a great victory for “liberty-loving people” everywhere in defeating Communism.

The most prominent of his opponents were the founders of the America First Committee, formed in September 1940. The committee opposed fighting Nazism and proposed a well-armed America confined largely to the Western hemisphere. It soon afterward adopted the noted aviator and enthusiast of fascism Charles Lindbergh as their favored speaker. Lindbergh accepted a medal from Herman Goering “in the name of the Fuehrer” during a visit to Germany in 1938, and “proudly wore the decoration.” He thought democracy was finished in Europe, that the western powers could not effectively resist the Nazi war machine and that the United States had better make terms with Adolf Hitler

President Trump declared that his new administration would have an old slogan: “We assembled here today are issuing a new decree … from this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it’s going to be only America First. America First!” The White House website pledges an “America First Energy Policy” and an “America First Foreign Policy.”

America First” was the motto of Nazi-friendly Americans in the 1930s, and Trump has more than just a catchphrase in common with them. When he began using the phrase last year during the campaign, the Anti-Defamation League had asked him to stop..


 
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dank69

Lifer
Oct 6, 2009
32,907
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Oh, they know. They just ignore it conveniently.
I'd guess 90% or more of GOP popularity depends on ignorance. Sure, the ringleaders know. Rank and file know nothing. Well except for the self-identified white supremacists. I'm sure a lot of them know about this slogan.
 
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pauldun170

Diamond Member
Sep 26, 2011
8,920
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I just found an interesting fact about Trump's and many of the Republican's supporters use of the term "America First" has its origin from the 1930' - 1940's and its relation to Nazism and isolationism. Not surprising as history repeats itself and Trump is not an original person in co-opting phrases to his own benefit.






Majority of my life was spent in the 20th century.
You'd be surprised of how much garbage from the 20th century has been repackaged by the modern Republican party.
 

blackangst1

Lifer
Feb 23, 2005
21,830
1,254
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There are several phrases that originally meant something racist but has changed over the years. Peanut gallery is one, grandfathered in is another. So is America First.
 

Greenman

Lifer
Oct 15, 1999
18,868
3,756
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And here I thought it meant America first. Learn something new (and a little stupid) every day.
 

woolfe9998

Lifer
Apr 8, 2013
14,983
11,636
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There are several phrases that originally meant something racist but has changed over the years. Peanut gallery is one, grandfathered in is another. So is America First.
This is true, but irrelevant in this case. Because the point is that there are numerous very close similarities between Trump, his following, and historical fascism. "America First" is just one. And the similarity is not coincidental. Because America First then and now meant, among other things, opposition to immigration. Which is itself associated with racism, or at a minimum, the cultural form of bigotry which caused so many Americans to mistrust even certain categories of white European immigrants. It also signals isolationism both then and now. Just look at Trump trying to pull us out of NATO, and the America Firsters back then trying to keep us out of WWII.
 

Thump553

Lifer
Jun 2, 2000
12,238
1,744
126
There are several phrases that originally meant something racist but has changed over the years. Peanut gallery is one, grandfathered in is another. So is America First.
Now that's something I never knew. I can see how peanut gallery could possibly have been racist, but how so on grandfathered?
 

Meghan54

Lifer
Oct 18, 2009
10,815
4,011
136
Now that's something I never knew. I can see how peanut gallery could possibly have been racist, but how so on grandfathered?
Grandfathered in: This legal term broadly refers to the "grandfather clause" adopted by seven Southern states during the Reconstruction Era.
Under it, anyone who was able to vote before 1867 was exempt from the literacy tests, property requirements and poll taxes needed for voting. But enslaved Black people were not freed until 1865, when the 13th Amendment passed, and weren't granted the right to vote until the 15th Amendment was passed in 1870.

The grandfather clause effectively excluded them from voting -- a practice that continued until the 1960s, according to Encyclopedia Britannica.
Now, "grandfathered in" means that a person or company are exempt from following new laws, but "grandfather clause" in its original context disenfranchised Black Americans for decades.


 

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
10,972
5,743
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I'd always thought of it as a racist slogan, that's the context in which I first heard about it, long before Trump came to prominence (i.e. from reading about US history as a child). What was actually news to me was kind of the reverse - to discover that "America First" was not exclusively a racist slogan, it actually goes back further than Charles Lindburgh and his racist agenda.


 

sportage

Lifer
Feb 1, 2008
10,771
2,539
136
Made In America. Isolationism. The Good Old Days. Segregation. Energy Independence.
The reality of it is, that we live in a global economy. The different world economies are entwined, and that is the way it is plain and simple. You can't go backwards. America alone can not possibly supply all the goods that Americans need and use, and the world depends of what America can produce which other countries can not produce for themselves.
Frankly, I don't see the big problem here with our world economy. Everyone benefits in the end. It's like a big family reunion. Someone brings the ham, someone else brings the gravy, the corn, the potatoes, and THE PIES!!!! We all love pies!!!!

It's just too bad that so many Americans still hold on to this belief of isolationism, segregation, only buying American made, and being totally energy independent.
And as far as segregation and isolationism goes, what are you going to do? Build a huge wall around America? Or send those of different skin color away to concentration camps?
That has been tried.... and it didn't work.
And most of the dictators that tried such a stunt end up shooting themselves in the head or drinking the drink of death.

Face it, all of us are here to stay. Red, yellow, brown, black and white. Men, women, and everything in between.
In my republican ran state the republican legislature just passed a law pretending that transgenders no longer exist, and the republican governor signed it. I won't say who, but this same republican governor just rebutted the state of the union address claiming herself to be a "state of acceptance, fairness, and equality".
Next, she and her legislature will go after some other race or creed that they feel the need to legislate out of existence.

The minority that will be doomed into extinction are those people who pass such laws and write such legislation. And believe me.... no wall no matter how massive or tall will ever make America great again.
 

hal2kilo

Lifer
Feb 24, 2009
20,489
7,402
136
This is true, but irrelevant in this case. Because the point is that there are numerous very close similarities between Trump, his following, and historical fascism. "America First" is just one. And the similarity is not coincidental. Because America First then and now meant, among other things, opposition to immigration. Which is itself associated with racism, or at a minimum, the cultural form of bigotry which caused so many Americans to mistrust even certain categories of white European immigrants. It also signals isolationism both then and now. Just look at Trump trying to pull us out of NATO, and the America Firsters back then trying to keep us out of WWII.
Think Gangs of New York. This shit has been around since ..... forever.
 

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