Muddling Towards Maturity links to a few articles by Jonah Goldberg, a Jewish author who wrote a lengthy history of fascism that was on the New York Times Bestseller list for several months. Since Goldberg is Jewish, I think it’s fair to say that we will get a unbiased answer to this question from someone who spent a lot of time studying it for his book.
Goldberg’s posts are here and here. He reproduces the FULL excerpts from his book Liberal Fascism that deal with the relationship between Hitler & Christianity. I will be giving you excerpts from the excerpts, but you must click through to read the chapter.
So, let’s take a look at what Hitler actually did in his policies.
Let’s start with the first post.
1) Hitler wanted Christianity removed from the public square
Like the engineers of that proverbial railway bridge, the Nazis worked relentlessly to replace the nuts and bolts of traditional Christianity with a new political religion. The shrewdest way to accomplish this was to co-opt Christianity via the Gleichschaltung while at the same time shrinking traditional religion’s role in civil society.
Do you want Christianity removed from the public square? If so, then you are like Hitler.
Do you want to minimize Christianity’s role in civil society? If so, then you are like Hitler.
2) Hitler banned the giving of donations to churches
Hitler banned religious charity, crippling the churches’ role as a counterweight to the state. Clergy were put on government salary, hence subjected to state authority. “The parsons will be made to dig their own graves,” Hitler cackled. “They will betray their God to us. They will betray anything for the sake of their miserable little jobs and incomes.”
Do you want to ban charitable contributions to churches? If so, then you are like Hitler.
3) Hitler replaced Christian celebrations with celebrations of the state
Following the Jacobin example, the Nazis replaced the traditional Christian calendar. The new year began on January 30 with the Day of the Seizure of Power. Each November the streets of central Munich were dedicated to a Nazi Passion play depicting Hitler’s Beer Hall Putsch. The martyrdom of Horst Wessel and his “old fighters” replaced Jesus and the apostles. Plays and official histories were rewritten to glorify pagan Aryans bravely fighting against Christianizing foreign armies. Anticipating some feminist pseudo history, witches became martyrs to the bloodthirsty oppression of Christianity.
Do you want to replace Christian traditions and holidays with secular traditions and holidays? If so, then you are like Hitler.
4) Hitler favored the complete elimination of Christianity
When some Protestant bishops visited the Fuhrer to register complaints, Hitler’s rage got the better of him. “Christianity will disappear from Germany just as it has done in Russia . . . The Germanrace has existed without Christianity for thousands of years . . . and will continue after Christianity has disappeared . . . We must get used to the teachings of blood and race.”
Do you favor the complete elimination of Christianity? If so, then you are like Hitler.
5) Hitler favored the removal of mandatory prayers in schools
In 1935 mandatory prayer in school was abolished…
Do you favor the removal of prayer from schools? If so, then you are like Hitler.
6) Hitler favored the banning of Christmas carols and nativity plays
…and in 1938 carols and Nativity plays were banned entirely.
Do you favor the banning of Christmas carols and nativity plays? If so, then you are like Hitler.
7) Hitler abolished religious instruction for children
By 1941 religious instruction for children fourteen years and up had been abolished altogether….
Do you favor abolishing religious instruction for children? If so, then you are like Hitler.
(Now we are on to the second post)
8) Hitler opposed the ideas of universal truth and objective moral absolutes
…Just as the Nazi attack on Christianity was part of a larger war on the idea of universal truth, whole postmodern cosmologies have been created to prove that traditional religious morality is a scam, that there are no fixed truths or “natural” categories, and that all knowledge is socially constructed.
Do you oppose the idea of universal truth? If so, then you are like Hitler.
Do you oppose the idea of objective moral absolutes? If so, then you are like Hitler.
One more that Goldberg doesn’t mention
Hitler was against homsechooling and school choice. He favored compulsory government-run (public) schools.
“The Youth of today is ever the people of tomorrow. For this reason we have set before ourselves the task of innoculating our youth with the spirit of this community of the people at a very early age, at an age when human beings are still unperverted and therefore unspoiled. This Reich stands, and it is building itself up for the future, upon its youth. And this new Reich will give its youth to no one, but will itself take youth and give to youth its own education and its own upbringing.”
Do you oppose homeschooling and school choice? If so, then you are like Hitler.
It doesn’t rally matter what a person says in his public speeches, because politicians lie all the time in order to get votes from particular groups, or to maintain their popularity. We need to look at what policies a politician actually enacts to see what he really believes. For example, Barack Obama had a number of pro-life advertisements during his campaign, but he is the most pro-abortion President ever in his actual policies.
Adolf Hitler was a man influenced by two big ideas: evolution and socialism. His party was the national SOCIALIST party. He favored a strong role for the state in interfering with the free market. He was in favor of regulating the the family so that the state could have a bigger influence on children. And he favored the idea of survival of the fittest. His ideas are 100% incompatible with Christianity and capitalism, two ideas which fit together hand in glove.
How about you? Do you lean to the left in your politics? Did you vote for fiscally-liberal Democrats who redistribute wealth from “the greedy rich” to the deserving poor by government coercion? Do you believe in evolution?
Does your belief system ground inalienable rights, including the right to life, which would make mass murder irrational? Christianity says that all men are made in the image of God, for the purpose of knowing God. Do you believe that? Or do you believe that we are just bundles of molecules here by accident?
I did a series of posts a while back that asked the question: is morality compatible with atheism? Do concepts like moral values, moral duties, free will, moral accountability, and moral significance rationally grounded by atheism?
I did a comparison of a consistent authentic Christian, William Wilberforce, with a consistent authentic evolutionist, Adolf Hitler. These two are totally opposed in every way, because their worldviews are diametrically opposed. Another prominent Christian at the time, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, also opposed Hitler and was executed for his part in a plot to assassinate Hitler.
In another post, I asked whether Christians or atheists are more responsible for the mass murders of history. I did the body count and the analysis of worldviews to determine which worldview doesn’t oppose the murder of millions of innocent people.
In another post, I looked at the ideas that kill millions of innocent people, including economic theories, scientific theories and social theories. Is there a common denominator between these ideas that have killed millions of people?
Here is an audio lecture by Jay Richards on the “Myths Christians Believe about Wealth and Poverty“. His new book is called “Money, Greed and God: Why Capitalism is the Solution and Not the Problem”. To understand what capitalism is, you can watch this lecture about the book. Here is a series of 4 sermons by Wayne Grudem on the relationship between Christianity and economics?.(a PDF outline is here)