By Nikitha B. Reddy, CONTRIBUTING WRITER February 24, 2016
Danielle S. Allen, a Government professor and director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, called on Americans across the political spectrum to organize against businessman Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign in a Sunday op-ed that has generated widespread reaction.
Allen said she found the need to write the op-ed for The Washington Post after Trump’s victory in Saturday’s Republican primary in South Carolina. Describing the primary as a “turning point,” Allen wrote in the piece that voters should recognize that there is not much time left to change the outcome of the Republican presidential nomination contest.
In the op-ed, which now has over 5000 online comments, Allen examined the dangers she perceived in Trump’s rise to political prominence, which she believes is a product of growing divisions in the United States. Instead of choosing not to challenge Trump, Americans must support “coordination across party lines and across divisions within parties,” Allen wrote.
“We, the people, need to find somewhere, buried in the recesses of our fading memories, the capacity to make common cause against this formidable threat to our equally shared liberties,” she wrote. “The time is now.”
Allen said she has received a wide range of opinions in response to her article, from the candidate’s supporters as well as his critics.
She wrote in her piece that Trump’s popularity has allowed her to understand how Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler was able to take control of Germany in the early 1930s. In an interview, Allen said she is not focused on exploring the direct comparison between Hitler and Trump, a point she also made in her op-ed.
“The fact that particular historical moments can teach us things that help us understand different moments doesn’t mean that there is a straight comparison between them,” she said. “The thing that requires comparison is the question of when and how do demagogues acquire power. That’s what is the relevant comparison.”
History professor Charles S. Maier ’60, a specialist in German history and former Crimson editorial chair, said the underlying question in Allen’s op-ed was over whether divisions in the United States today mirror those of the Weimar Republic, the democratic German state that preceded the Nazi regime.
While Maier said he does not believe the comparison is accurate, he said the rhetoric Trump uses is pervasive in Western politics.
“There are candidates who appeal to this sort of populism, anti-foreign impulse of feeling that their governments are too remote and don’t care about them,” he said. “That is a widespread feeling throughout western Europe and the United States, and I think in that sense it produces ugly responses that stigmatize foreigners.”
Danielle S. Allen: Of The Democratic National Committee (DNC)
Allen: The sacrifices of soldiers are important, should not be forgotten, and deserve honor. We don’t even need the lesson of current events to know that. As a society we have well-developed habits and practices for honoring soldiers, firefighters, and police officers. We may not do all we should, but we do expect to build monuments to their heroism and to read their names out one by one.
We are not, however, very good at seeing some mundane sacrifices, and we certainly don’t honor them. Our economic policies ask all kinds of sacrifices of citizens, which we only nervously acknowledge. When the Federal Reserve decided to increase interest rates in the spring of 2000 to slow down an “overheated” economy, its members expected that their actions would, among other things, generate new unemployment. Now, we may all be comfortable with the notion that slowing the economy and generating some unemployment is good for everyone, even for those who will now find themselves unemployed—even the newly unemployed may accept the macroeconomic arguments justifying the policy—but this does not diminish the pain or difficulty that the newly unemployed may experience. That they endure it and persevere in seeking jobs and abiding by the law is also a sacrifice.
Or let me offer an example that’s closer to my own home. In the 1950s and ’60s the administration of the University of Chicago was worried that the increasing poverty of the South Side Chicago neighborhood, which had recently evolved into a primarily African-American area, would scare parents and cut into student enrollments dramatically enough to endanger the future of the university. The administration considered moving the university out of Chicago. Instead, it launched an aggressive policy of urban renewal to secure an upper-income, mixed-race neighborhood for itself in its own immediate vicinity. The project displaced at least 3,500 lower-income families, both black and white.
In the Winter 2014/15 CRB, Diana Schaub reviewed Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality, by Danielle Allen. We’re very pleased to have them discuss here the questions raised by the book and review. Danielle S. Allen, the author of three books prior to Our Declaration, is the UPS Foundation Professor in School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study. Diana Schaub, a frequent contributor to CRB and other journals, is a professor of political science at Loyola University Maryland, and a member of the Hoover Institution’s Jill and Boyd Smith Task Force on the Virtues of a Free Society.
This is not what the Deceleration Of Independence, was about in part, it was in fact a Declaration Of War, against British Taxes against the New Colony Of America.
Danielle S. Allen- Democratic Party: https://www.google.com/search?q=Danielle+S.+Allen-+Democratic+Party...
Is there a conspiracy to mislead the true foundation of the Declaration Of Independence ? Was there a conspiracy to debunk the Preambles of the Declaration Of Independence, because of what John Adams stated against King Of England ?
It all started here, with our investigations.
"The Unanimous Declaration Of The Thirteen States Of America July 4, 1776 " by William Floyd a official Preamble of our Founding Fathers.
Burn it !!!
Allen said she found the need to write the op-ed for The Washington Post...
This by itself puts her in the class of counterfeit.
She twists truth every way to Sunday to sucker people just like counterfeit money.
Her words my sound pleasant enough but inside she is blacker than coal.
This is demonic garbage.
Be wise and do not get fooled by her type.
Thats what I have been trying to say, she debunked Preambles to the Declaration Of Independence, and as well as the Declaration Of Independence.
Kind of weird hu ?????
Not weird---pure evil.
Danielle S. Allen is misguided as being delusional. All DEMs are. Trump's rise was not because of the identity divisions created by Barack Obama and the devious DEMs. Trump got elected to reverse the course that Mao Marxist (Obama) put this country on - against their will of the people.
With that, to Ms. Allen I ask, who really cares what you think. You are in the minority.
I recommend for you to simply accept the results as we did for eight miserable years. ....or go just away. America has more than enough misguided malcontents and there isn't a need for any more.
LOVE that sign.
I'm stealing it!!!