First They Came for the Queer People

by John M Repp

Many people have heard Pastor Martin Niemoller’s famous poem:

“First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out – because I was not a socialist.
 Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out – because I was not a trade  unionist.
 Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out – because I was not a Jew.
 Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Thom Hartmann in his Friday, March 3, 2023 Hartmann Report tells us that the first group that the Nazis attacked after Hitler came to power at the end of January 1933 were the trans people.

In the 1920’s, being gay, lesbian or trans was widely accepted in the big cities of Germany. But within five months of Hitler taking power, Nazis showed up at the Institute for Sexual Research in Berlin where Magnus Hirschfeld had pioneered gender-affirming treatment and collected the largest library of books and scientific papers on the LGBTQ spectrum in the world.

The Nazis staged their first book burning there. In the controlled press, they demonized “deviance” to “protect Germany’s youth”.

The ACLU has tracked 371 anti-trans bills across the United States. The FBI reported a sevenfold increase in hate crimes against lesbians in 2021. Crimes against gay and trans people were up as well. Trump said that if he wins in 2024 he will propose legislation outlawing trans people.