The Hollywood star and former governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger posted a lengthy video statement to Twitter on Sunday in which he condemned President Donald Trump following the Capitol riots.
Schwarzenegger began by saying that he grew up in Austria, where he saw firsthand the guilt many soldiers experienced after World War II.
“I grew up in Austria, and I’m very aware of Kristallnacht, or the ‘Night of Broken Glass.’ It was a night of rampage against the Jews carried out in 1938 by the Nazi equivalent of the Proud Boys,” he said. “Wednesday was the Day of Broken Glass right here in the United States. The broken glass was in the windows of the United States Capitol, but the mob did not just shatter the windows of the Capitol, they shattered the ideas we took for granted. They did not just break down the doors of the building that housed American democracy. They trampled the very principles on which our country was founded.”
Schwarzenegger went on to recall his father coming home drunk when he was a child and abusing him and his mother.
“I did not hold him totally responsible because our neighbor was doing the same thing to his family and so was the next one over,” he said. “I heard it with my own ears and saw it with my own eyes. It all started with lies, and lies, and lies and intolerance. So, being from Europe, I’ve seen firsthand how things can spin out of control.”
Though he stopped short of saying that America was headed in the same direction as pre-war Germany, he did say that there would be “dire consequences” for U.S. democracy if the current situation continues.
That’s when he zeroed in on attacking Trump and his supporters.
“President Trump tried to overturn the results of an election, and of a fair election. He sought a coup by misleading people with lies. My father and our neighbors were misled also with lies, and I know where such lies lead,” he said. “President Trump is a failed leader. He will go down in history as the worst president ever. The good thing is that he will soon be as irrelevant as an old tweet. But what are we to make of those elected officials who have enabled his lies and his treachery? I will remind them of what Teddy Roosevelt said: ‘Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president.’”
Schwarzenegger ended his video by urging everyone to rally behind Joe Biden.
“We need to heal not as Republicans or Democrats, but as Americans,” he said. “Now, to begin this process, no matter what your political affiliation is, I ask you to join me in saying to President-elect Biden, ‘President-elect Biden, we wish you great success as our president. If you succeed, our nation succeeds. We support you with all our hearts as you seek to bring us together.’
“And to those who think they can overturn the United States Constitution, know this — you will never win. President-elect Biden, we stand with you today, tomorrow and forever in defense of our democracy and those who would threaten it,” Schwarzenegger concluded.
Check out his full video below.
My message to my fellow Americans and friends around the world following this week's attack on the Capitol. pic.twitter.com/blOy35LWJ5
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) January 10, 2021
This piece was written by James Samson on January 11, 2021. It originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.
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