Arnold Schwarzenegger has a pointed message for antisemites

Arnold Schwarzenegger has issued a strong, 12-minute handle urging antisemites to desert their hateful ideologies and “choose strength.”

On Monday, the previous motion film star and former governor of California shared the impassioned speech by way of Facebook in a video produced by ATTN, a Los Angeles-based “issues-driven” media firm.

“I don’t care how many hateful things you may have written online. I don’t care how often you’ve marched carrying that hateful flag or what hateful things you may have said in anger. There is still hope for you,” he mentioned within the video.

Schwarzenegger, who was California’s most up-to-date Republican governor, started his handle by describing the horrors he encountered when touring the Auschwitz focus camp in Poland. He additionally referenced his father, who was a member of the Nazi occasion, and his upbringing in Austria post-World War II.

“When you walk through a place like Auschwitz, you feel a tremendous weight,” he mentioned. “There are reminders everywhere of the horrors that happened there: The suitcases never claimed by the prisoners . . . The logbooks with thousands of names crossed out, as if a cruel accountant only measured death. The gas chambers with scratches in the walls from the fingernails of people who tried to hold onto life. The crematorium where the Nazis tried to erase all of their atrocities.”

Schwarzenegger mentioned his remarks weren’t geared toward individuals who have been the goal of antisemitism, however reasonably, he needed to deal with people who find themselves fueled by hate, those perpetrating the antisemitism.

“I want to talk to you if you’ve heard some conspiracy theories about Jewish people, or people of any race or gender or orientation, and thought, ‘That makes sense to me.’ I want to talk to you if you’ve found yourself thinking about anyone as inferior and out to get you because of their religion or the color of their skin, or their gender,” he added.

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“I don’t know the road that has brought you here, but I’ve seen enough people throw away their futures for hateful beliefs, so I want to speak to you before you find your regrets at the end of that path.”

The “Terminator” star mentioned rising up surrounded by the lads who misplaced the Second World War. He described the best way “their bodies were riddled with injuries and shrapnel” . . . and that “their hearts and their minds were equally riddled with guilt.” He mentioned he witnessed the lads ingesting to numb their ache and the best way they felt like losers who not solely misplaced the warfare, however had fallen for “a horrible, loser ideology.”

Teddy Von Nukem, left, and Peter Cvjetanovic attend a far-right rally in 2017.

(Anadolu Agency / Getty Images)

At one level in Schwarzenegger’s handle, the notorious photograph of Charlottesville, Va., protesters Teddy Von Nukem and Peter Cvjetanovic was proven. The males turned two of essentially the most outstanding faces of the 2017 far-right rally. Earlier this yr, on the day he was due in courtroom for a drug-trafficking cost, Von Nukem died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at his house in Missouri.

“Throughout history, hate has always been the easy path, the path of least resistance. . . It’s easier to find a scapegoat for a problem than to try to make things better ourselves…,” Schwarzenegger mentioned. “You will not find success on the end of that road… there has never been a successful movement based on hate.”

“I can understand how people can fall into the trap of prejudice and hate. Whether you grew up surrounded by hate or get sucked in by some of Big Tech’s algorithms that push you to the extreme.”

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“When you spend your life looking for scapegoats, you take away your own responsibility, you remove your own power, you steal your own strength.”

According to the Anti-Defamation League, in 2021 there was a 34% improve in antisemitic incidents than the yr earlier than. That was the best quantity on document because the Anti-Defamation League started monitoring antisemitic incidents in 1979.

There has additionally been a staggering improve in antisemitism on Twitter in keeping with, which mentioned that Kanye “Ye” West’s antisemitic feedback triggered a rise of 136% in poisonous feedback, threats and identification assaults towards Jewish individuals on the social platform.

Late final yr, associated to West’s tirade in opposition to Jewish individuals, a well known hate group flocked to a busy 405 freeway overpass in Los Angeles. Demonstrators gave Nazi salutes and displayed a banner that learn “Kanye is right about the Jews.”

In the next weeks, L.A. residents discovered fliers at their properties and on their automobiles, promoting conspiracy theories about Jewish individuals.

And final month, Jaime Tran, 28, was charged with federal hate crimes after he shot two Jewish males as they left spiritual providers in Los Angeles. After his arrest, Tran admitted to police that he had looked for a kosher market on Yelp previous to the assaults and knew the lads had been Jewish due to their “head gear.”