My Friend the ‘Nazi’ (Reacting without reason)

M

Something that has wound me up recently is the treatment of a friend of mine from University. I started my course in 2015 and had to start acquainting myself with new people, and for someone like me, that is very hard, but I made some good friends, including someone I would consider one of my best. The person who I became friends with, the closest with, they are now in trouble.

For context, this individual (who I won’t publicly name) is on my History course. they, like many of us, is interested in World War Two machinery. They have a large collection of WW2 planes, naval vessels, and other stuff. One of their models has gotten them in trouble, which is their Radio Controlled model of the Bismarck. The Bismarck was a class of Nazi battleship constructed during the war to fight naval wars on the Atlantic.

Bundesarchiv Bild 193-04-1-26, Schlachtschiff Bismarck.jpg
An actual picture of a Bismarck

The person in question posted a picture of their model boat on Facebook. As part of the boat included the Kriegsmarine flag, which has a swastika on it, the model has the Kriegsmarine flag on it, as that is what the actual boat had. This flag, on the post, was said to be removable and would have been removed if the person got to use their RC boat. However, someone has reported them, putting their university course at risk, and potentially affecting their future, all because of their hobby.

War Ensign of Germany (1938-1945).svg
The Nazi War Ensign, 1938-1945

Here’s the thing: I myself have a number of books about The Holocaust, about Nazi generals, and I even have a copy of Mein Kampf. I am a History student, I have an interest in WW2 history, and the figures who were involved in WW2. This person has a collection of British, German, and Soviet planes, tanks, and naval vessels. I have even offered them several model planes to add to their collection for a Battle of Britain diorama.

IMG_20180222_172157.jpg
Truly I am an awful man.

As well as this, this is someone who is not only left wing but has repeatedly spoken out against Nazism. They went to Lime Street station to confront the Nazis, along with other local Liverpool residents. They also identify as Bisexual and is a quarter Romani. If this person was a Nazi, they would have been laughed at and shot if they were in the Third Reich. I believe that the person who reported them reacted before reason.

My friend is far from being a Nazi. They are at risk of losing their place on their course because someone reacted before reasoning. I know that this person has been discriminated against in the past because before I knew them I was discriminatory towards them. This has just upset me, and I hope that they can get it sorted out.

About the author

Ben

Since 2012, Benjamin Attwood has written for the If you Ask Ben blog.

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