The BorderLine is a weekly Daily Signal feature examining everything from the unprecedented illegal immigration crisis at the border to immigration’s impact on cities and states throughout the land. We will also shed light on other critical border-related issues like human trafficking, drug smuggling, terrorism, and more.


“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel,” said British intellectual Samuel Johnson in April 1775, a couple of weeks before the “shot heard round the world” at Lexington began the Revolutionary War.

Johnson didn’t mean that patriotism was bad. He meant that when crooked, venal people run out of other ideas, they turn to patriotic bombast to divert attention from their low character.

Two centuries later, calling people Nazis is the last refuge of the progressive media mob. Rather than win by strength of argument, they can just call an ideological opponent a bigot, a homophobe, a transphobe, a racist, a misogynist, and lastly, play the trump card—a Nazi.

The national debate about immigration and the hopelessly out-of-control southwest border is the latest place the Left is playing this card. It would be bad enough to throw the Nazi label around if the accusers had any idea what it meant. But the state of education in this country is abysmal, and few do.

A third of U.S. eighth graders “would have trouble … naming one way Congress fulfills its constitutional responsibilities.” Just one.

Even as adults, 30% of Americans don’t know who won the Civil War. Also, with a ratio of at least 33 Democrat college history professors to 1 Republican at our leading universities, even Americans who possess basic factual knowledge are getting it through a lens smeared with woke nonsense.

Dec. 19, 2023, saw more than 12,000 illegal aliens encountered on the U.S. southern border in one day—at least half of whom will be released into the country rather than turned back. These daily numbers topping 10,000 have been going on for weeks, and for the month of December, there were over 302,000 illegal alien “encounters” at the borders—yet another historically bad record set under President Joe Biden. And remember, this number reflects only those whom U.S. authorities saw attempting to cross the border, not the “gotaways.”

Many of the released illegal migrants will head to already bankrupt cities whose mayors angrily blame Texas, Congress, the world—anyone but the men who caused it: Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

While the true disaster of open borders is apparent even to the most buried ostrich head in politics, rather than challenge the deliberate policies behind it, Leftists are reaching for the trusty Nazi card to blame conservatives and ordinary Americans for being concerned. The coordination of the White House and servile media outlets on the cries of “Nazi” is familiar to us by now.

Former President Donald Trump’s comments from a recent New Hampshire event, for example, where he said millions of illegal immigrants pouring into our country were “poisoning the blood of our country,” were quickly passed around the left-leaning media at the speed of thumbs.

The Associated Press claimed Trump “drew on words similar to Adolf Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’” when he criticized the Biden administration’s policy of mass-releasing and paroling illegal immigrants into the United States. The title of the article included the phrase “Trump invokes Nazi-era ‘blood’ rhetoric against immigrants.”

Meanwhile, the White House shrieked that Trump had “parroted Adolf Hitler, praised Kim Jong Un, and quoted Vladimir Putin.” (Why they left out Josef Stalin, Pol Pot, and Mao Zedong, I don’t know.) Vice President Kamala Harris said Trump had used “language that I think people have rightly found similar to the language of Hitler.” Because, we assume, Harris has read everything he ever wrote, in the original German.

What the media hit men love most are the rhetorical flourishes Trump uses with relish, like “vermin,” “lying press,” and “enemy of the people.” Because both far-left and far-right leaders have used the same or similar words, in different languages, a century ago, in completely different political contexts, they must clearly mean the same thing! Democracy is at stake! So goes the analogy and the argument.

But it’s not just Trump—any conservative who dares challenge woke orthodoxy gets the Nazi treatment. John Oliver joked that Elon Musk wanted to invent a time machine so he could go back and “high-five baby Hitler.” Oliver wants Musk’s X (Twitter) censored or shut down to preserve the progressive-liberal media monopoly.

The Nation’s Elie Mystal called real estate developer Harlan Crow a “Nazi sympathizer” because he had a copy of “Mein Kampf” in his library—as if any scholar of modern history has not read Hitler’s writing, terrible though it is in both style and content. 

As to the border, the woke orthodoxy is that because legal immigration has been good for America, then unlimited immigration, of anyone, from anywhere, indefinitely, must be even better.

Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy believes in border security and controlled immigration. Predictably, CNN’s Van Jones called his comments on the topic “one step away from Nazi propaganda.”

The Left’s straight-to-Nazi approach is similar to the dishonest narrative—still repeated—on Trump’s comments after the Charlottesville, Virginia, riots over the removal of Confederate statues from the public square.

Hyperbole and rhetoric are tools of all politicians, yet the media are strangely silent when it comes from their side. Biden claimed that Republicans negotiating for border security in a recent spending bill that also included funding for the Ukraine war were “holding Ukraine funding hostage in an attempt to force through an extreme Republican partisan agenda on the border.” Really? At this point, would just asking him to obey the oath he swore to uphold the law be an “extreme partisan agenda”?

Biden got tetchier a few days later when he claimed that by refusing his supplemental spending request of over $100 billion, Republicans were “willing to literally kneecap Ukraine on the battlefield and damage our national security in the process.” Presumably, Biden meant “figuratively,” not “literally.” The gruesome term “kneecap” represents a punishment by which terrorists and others shoot perceived traitors in the kneecaps so they will likely never walk again.

Throwing around Nazi accusations is historically illiterate and slanderous, but it’s also a distraction from a crucial point. This Associate Press title, for example, “Senate border security talks grind on as Trump invokes Nazi-era ‘blood’ rhetoric against immigrants,” entirely hides the ball: The beef of a majority of Americans in recent polls isn’t with immigration, it’s with illegal immigration. Activists like to pretend these are the same thing, but they’re not.

When everyone and everything is compared to Hitler and Nazis, the accusations lose their punch. As anyone who has studied history, talked to a World War II veteran, or heard the witness of a concentration camp survivor knows, the Third Reich was in an evil league of its own. Comparing U.S. political candidates who oppose open borders and want to enforce existing U.S. law to a regime that invaded many nations and intentionally killed millions of civilians, including 6 million Jews, is just not serious.

To distract the public from their terrible ideas—on immigration, gender ideology, education, and the economy—leftists fall back on name-calling. Americans won’t fall for it forever.

Read Other BorderLine Columns:

Chicago Mayor Lashes Out as Illegal Aliens Flood His Sanctuary City

Biden’s Border Chaos—Crime Soars as Punishment Vanishes

Is There Really a Link Between Climate Change and Mass Migration?

Biden Prefers to Put Your Safety at Risk and Play Recidivism Roulette With Criminal Aliens

Memo from McAllen—A Look Inside the Mayorkas Migration Machine

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