In light of the increasingly frequent comparison between modern American police and German law enforcement officers from the 1930s, we figured that we should compare the two to prove that modern American police are nothing like the evil Schutzstaffel (AKA Nazis).
The German government in the 1930s had various forms of surveillance and multiple types of police. German citizens were afraid to speak openly with people, for fear that they might be part of the Gestapo or another Nazi police officer. Eric. A. Johnson compared them to the omnipresent ‘Thought Police’ from the book ‘1984’: “ First appearing in Berlin in April 1933, when Hitler had been in power for only three months, the Gestapo shortly thereafter established large central posts in Germany’s major cities and smaller outposts in the rest of Germany’s communities. Allegedly endowed with a huge army of specially trained agents and spies and employing advanced technical means of surveillance, the Gestapo, like the “thought police” of George Orwell’s terrifying postwar novel 1984, had more than sufficient means to keep close tabs at all times on all citizens—from Jews, Communists, and other “enemies” of the regime to the most insignificant members of German society.”
In America, however, we have the 4th Amendment, which prevents law enforcement or any other government official from spying on us or searching our property without due process and/or a warrant from a judge. Local police departments and the US government do not have mass surveillance programs, nor do any states in the nation. Police allow our private lives to remain private and they do not intrude into our personal space and they don’t interfere with our personal decisions. Local police departments in the US would never even consider automatically photographing and tracking every license plate, nor would they implement red light cameras or speed cameras just to spy on, control, and extort innocent people.
Due Process & Violence
German police were authorized and encouraged to initiate violence against those who did not obey the law. The tyrants in charge, including Hitler did not grant the German citizens due process. In the US, we have due process, and police cannot do anything to harm any individual because police only encounter individuals who have yet to be convicted in court. Police never see criminals, only suspects, because every American is innocent until proven guilty. Only judges can sentence individuals to be punished, because our Constitution guarantees due process. Police who do hurt or kill civilians are punished harshly. Simply put, American cops cannot get away with murder like the Nazis did. And American cops certainly cannot get away with rape.
The Schutzstaffel generally obeyed orders and could not get away with disobeying orders from Adolf Hitler or the Nazi leaders. During the Nuremberg trials after WW2, Nazi officials defended themselves by claiming that they were ‘just obeying orders’ from their superiors. In America, police are not obligated to follow unconstitutional or immoral orders, and police in America never violate the US Constitution. In the US, the Nuremberg Defense is never used by police.
Protection of civilians
The Nazis don’t seem to be known for protecting German citizens from dangers. Though the Nazi Party did use propaganda to turn the populace against the Jews and other minorities and convince them that the Jews were such a threat that they must be removed from society, protection was not their primary function. The primary job of Nazi officers was to control and terrorize people, especially those who their leaders hated. In the US, however, our cops protect those who cannot protect themselves.When Americans are afraid, we call the police. And they always help us and keep us safe. In fact, the Supreme Court of the US has made an important ruling on the obligation of police to protect people. Many government-run schools in the US have amazing police officers in the school at all times. Without police, we would be so unsafe!
Worship of police & government
Similar to many socialist and communist regimes, the citizenry in Germany circa 1930 became brainwashed into adoring Hitler and the Nazis in a cult-like fashion. Indeed, being a Nazi officer was well respected and supported very strongly by the Aryan Germans. The government also used propaganda to normalize their actions and to make the citizens love them. In the US, citizens are smart enough to avoid falling for that sort of manipulation. We do not worship police or politicians and we hold them accountable when they violate the law or when they hurt someone.
Stop & Frisk
German officials could stop and search citizens whenever they wanted, without needing any specific reason. Americans are protected from such searches and seizures by the 4th amendment to our Constitution. Unlike the SS, American police cannot ‘stop & frisk’ random people just because they feel like it. Our police certainly would not coerce innocent people into providing cheek swabs just to ‘have their DNA samples on file’.
The Nazi officers and the Nazi Party in general were surely corrupt. They seized control of the German government and turned it into a murderous, controlling, dictatorship. In the US, police officers are not corrupt and police and government leaders are never involved in corrupt activity.
God bless the USA and God bless our police!