It’s fun—a macabre sort of fun—this parlor game of “Who Goes Nazi?” And it simplifies things—asking the question in regard to specific personalities.
Kind, good, happy, gentlemanly, secure people never go Nazi. They may be the gentle philosopher whose name is in the Blue Book, or Bill from City College to whom democracy gave a chance to design airplanes—you’ll never make Nazis out of them. But the frustrated and humiliated intellectual, the rich and scared speculator, the spoiled son, the labor tyrant, the fellow who has achieved success by smelling out the wind of success—they would all go Nazi in a crisis.
Dorothy Thompson’s parlor game.
Seventy-six years later, and this 1941 article about “Who Goes Nazi?” is still depressingly relevant.
(Also to keep in mind: this article was published both a few months before the US entered World War 2, as well as before the extent of the Holocaust became known to the general public.)