The documentarian takes on the U.S. and the Holocaust, and weighs in on what that dark period tells us about the chasm between our ideals and our reality.
I think the attempt at making a connection between Nazi Germany and the current US immigration situation disappointing. This episode reminded me of NPR, and that's not good. But hey, no one's perfect.
Of course, Trump has to be painted as an authoritarian anti-Semite... the man with a Jewish son-in-law and Jewish grandkids.
This gets old, man.
The 1619 project is absurd propaganda and a reflection of the collapse of standards at the newspaper that published it in the first place. There's nothing subtle or gray about that fact.
This is so Ken Burns. Ninety percent brilliant filmmaker, insightful and broad-minded, then just when you think he's made his best points he dons the shill hat of the left and ends up saying, "Nah, it really is that conservatives suck. The End. "A Film by Ken Burns."
How is it that a US House Member in 1941 is identified as Republican for wanting to build a wall while the vast majority of the US Congress was Democrat and responsible for such immigration policies, including the beloved FDR, and not a peep about that party? Yes, Burns is a good filmmaker, a distortionist historian and a sneaky propagandist.
“What you have is all the vestiges, all the traces, all of the smells that are retained from a country that is suffused in antisemitism. And that’s going to infect the ranks of your newspaper. It’s going to infect the college that you may want to go to.”
The newspapers and colleges are run, and were run, by hardcore ideological elite progressive statist scumbags.
Ken’s attempt to blame the horrific behavior and bigotry of these uniquely evil people on the general American public “infecting” them with the diffuse bigotry that commoners somehow put out into the ether is one of the most disgusting, dishonest, and manipulative rhetorical ploys I’ve seen in a while.
You only include a clip of January 6th in a documentary about the Holocaust if you are a smooth-brained dipshit or a nefarious propagandist. It’s one of those two.
I am shocked at the discussion here. To compare the current situation at the border with the Holocaust is disgusting. The Democrats are destroying the US but the blame is placed on the Republicans. This is using the Holocaust for partisan politics and it too is disgusting.
I am so tired of stories of how bad, bad, bad Americans are, especially those evil conservatives. Was there a mention of how many Americans went to Europe to fight Nazi Germany, and died there? Are there photos of all the cemeteries of graves of American soldiers? Does Holocaust Memorial Day say anything about all the non Jews who died to liberate Jews?
Fascism in America is clearly on the Left now. Hello, Bari? They don’t even try to hide the cooperation between govt, especially the intel community, and Big Tech, Big Media, Big Pharma, and Big Green Energy to oppress us. That is actual fascism. Just take Hamilton 68. A total scam. Let’s have a documentary on that kind of fascism.
Bari….I hope you read the number of well stated criticisms of both Mr Burns film and your interview here….and then reread them again!
You are drifting off mission. His film and your interview are not journalism…they are propaganda
It's funny, thinking about that "uses and misuses of history" bit. On the one hand, there's calling Fauci "Dr. Mengele" or Marjorie Taylor Greene and masks as a "yellow star". On the other hand, there's Bari Weiss likening Trump's "build a wall" or Ken Burn's likening DeSantis' standing up to Disney's politicizing childhood education, to going "that way" (i.e., the Holocaust). Sadly, that event is now a political football used by both sides, as we see in this piece. And sadly as well, that undercuts Burns' whole documentary.
At the end, as a way to accommodate the Times' "1619" project and its condemnation of the US, he says he doesn't have a "single perspective", but it doesn't really seem to work. Sometimes you do have to pick a side, and that's one of the things he should have learned from the Holocaust.
Burns is right to tell the story of traditional American antisemitism which emerged largely on the right and was on display at Charlottesville and on January 6. What is not okay is that the huge antisemitic upsurge on the left, terrorizing Jewish students and limiting the conversation by force, was shockingly, screamingly absent. That’s not good story telling— that’s verging in propaganda. Immensely disappointing from America’s premier storyteller. Terribly disappointing from Bari, the courageous free voice of critical journalism, who failed in her duty to press him on this when I think she would have done so with anyone else. Understandable. But I expect excellence from these two people and it was missing. They are too good, the both of them, and the subject is do important, that they should allow themselves fall short again from what they are capable of snd what this subject demands.
It might be a fascinating documentary but I am put off watching it due to the clear and obvious bias that Ken Burns has.
KB: “it’s not political.” Please. The documentary is epic. The concluding images, however, are highly political. He discredits himself through this disingenuous assertion, and his interviewer discredits herself by allowing it to dangle unchallenged.
I watched the first episode of The U.S. and the Holocaust and soon enough realized it was Burns' advocating for open borders today.
Mine is a family of a Survivor of Auschwitz, 2nd Generation, 3rd Generation and now 4th Generation (thank G-d) survivors. I was prepared for criticism of America's role in the WWII era. My father-in-law saw US Air Force planes flying over Auschwitz but the US did nothing to stop the mass murder of Jews. It was only Jews.... They saw, and they knew. FDR knew.
But to use the Holocaust to paint 21st century America as evil for not allowing the dregs of South America to enter our country today willy nilly is grotesque. I did not watch another episode, nor did my entire very Holocaust-aware family,
The desperate attempt of the Left, and the Democrat Party, to connect anyone with whom they disagree to Hitler and Fascism is getting tiresome.
Fascism is defined by Webster as a form of capitalism under strict political or state control. The absurd abuse of freedom of FB, Twitter, and Google of basic free speech is Exhibit A. The ESG mandates on companies, spoken as great prophesy by leading Democrat luminaries is Exhibit B. And the climate hysteria fomented by politicians like Gore and Kerry is Exhibit C. If you want to fear a concentration of state power over the economy, look to these trends and the trail of campaign funding beneath them: all leading from corporate barons to the DNC. Bari, you are right to give Burns a slot, but it is a stretch to assign his works genuine credibility. Like all such entities, his organization would uncover like-minded types eager to refashion the world in their image: somewhat educated globalists who can spot a glass of bad Chardonnay from three feet.
Beyond tired of calling 01/06 an insurrection. First, where was Trump’s military support? Second, why weren’t the leaders of the coup well-armed: as Connery said “leave it to a Dago to show up with a knife at a gun fight”. Third, Trump an authoritarian? Well he is not smart enough to be a Hitler, Mao or Stalin. That takes real and perverted genius. Trump is an egotistical opportunist who, ironically, pushed toward more freedom and away from state control. His record, setting aside Trump obsessive attacks, will stand up well to Biden’s which just may bring on the demise of our economy from debt.
I get that the synagogue attack in Pittsburgh struck a nerve for you. But we have to go back to first truths: Jews will ALWAYS be persecuted, because they began the journey to Truth which reached its completion in the teachings of Christ. Nobody likes the idea that there may be metaphysical truth, so it has been scrutinized and criticized by the postmodern materialist crowd that make up today’s power brokers. And anytime a group of people are as insular and successful as Jews, it will breed envy. The irony of the Jews is that if they intermarried aggressively they would cease to exist. I am not sure I like that option, so I tolerate the unmentionable fact that Jews are the most racist people on Earth. And we are all the beneficiaries of that, because they showed us the Truth.
You are right to have these interviews. But Burns has made many films past his “sell by” date. Based on the snippets I heard this is one of them.
Am I concerned about extremists in our country? Yes. Antifa, BLM, MoveOn, and people who use terms like “irredeemable”, “deplorable”, and “those who cling to their guns and religion”. If those quotations don’t give you a chill, you are listening through a filter and not an objective one.
Bari Weiss asked: "I wonder if we should be hesitant from any political perspective to use Holocaust motifs and symbolism in trying to understand contemporary American life."
Ken Burns replied: "After much reflection and soul searching and arguments and disagreements, we decided we had to skate on that thin ice. **I don’t think we could have gotten away with any other ending but the one we had** [which brough up contemporary politics as illustrations of "Holocaustishness"]
That sounds as if Mr. Burns is not taking responsibility for what he chose to put on the screen. His "we," the ones who made the movie, are not the agents of their own actions, while a much bigger "we," the audience, is expected to feel responsibility for the Holocaust.
Our history has been selective in who is putting it forward. If our education system just taught history as a journey without trying to spin it we would be better served. Our history is full of notable heroes from all races and religions. Yet it’s also full of those who were definitely on the wrong side.
Long been known Ford was pro Hitter and just maybe FDR knew war was coming. Democrats were the KKK and yes our founding fathers did some not so great things. Look at the Liberals love of Soros, also a supporter of Hitler.
How about just telling history and no specific agenda and accepting that things happen and no we don’t have to prostate ourselves today for others actions gone by.
I and you owe no one anything for what happened in history. The trouble is self serving people seeking to increase their influence and wealth want that as means to achieve their own agenda.
I think people worldwide would still gladly trade places with the grifters who want reparations, free this or that. They would love to have a fraction of the opportunities America still has to offer.
There is evil on both sides Bari and I fear you missed the opportunity to expand on that.