choose one of: sky/skye/scott (anunreallife) wrote in anarchopolls,
choose one of: sky/skye/scott

Long story, ended by a request for your thoughts, posted to here because here is a lot more informal than Anarchists.

So, I am German. I'm not particular proud of this, I'm not particularly non-proud of it. For me, it's kind of like having curly/straight hair--it's because of my ancestors, once upon a time some people had sex, and some other people had sex, and they had kids who had sex, and now I'm here and mostly German.

The reason this comes up at all, other than "interesting anecdote about my life," is because recently, we had "share your heritage time." And my friends were talking about being French-Canadian, or Italian, and we had a guy who talked about being Jamaican, and the discussion went around to me. I mentioned I was German. Godwin's Law was invoked immediately. Never mind that I'm fifth-generation (on the German side), so all of my German ancestors were on this continent by 1900. So far as I know, none of my relatives, or their ancestors, were Nazis. (Except in the way that we're all related by fact of being human/we all have a common genetic ancestor about 10,000 years back. I'm talking about since my father's side of the family adopted a surname in the 1800s.) If I do have Nazi relatives, the family never speaks of them at all. And it's almost certain that members of my family were subject to vicious hatred during the 1940s, just for being Germans in America during World War II (although I know at least one branch of my family was living in a mainly-German town at the time, so it was less of a problem for them).

The reason I'm posting this to anarchopolls is, I'm wondering:
Is it fair to assume someone is a Nazi because they're German? Is it acceptable to assume someone has/had Nazi relatives because they are German? Why is it considered acceptable to assume someone is racist and anti-Semetic--or that their relatives are--simply because, at one point, some of their ancestors were from Germany? Is there a case where this sort of assumption is acceptable?

NB: This is not a question in the form of "PEOPLE HATE MY POOR WHITE SELF!" I seriously am wondering about these questions, since it does seem to be socially acceptable to assume that because I==German, I==Nazi. (This goes in a similar category with "Assumptions based on Southern accent: OK, yes/no?")
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