16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime - We Are The Mighty
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16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

When the Nazis came to power in January 1933, the party only won 37 percent of the vote across Germany. In the Reichstag, the German parliament, the National Socialists only controlled a third of the seats when Hitler came to power. When they held another election two months later, after crushing other parties and quieting opposition, they still only won 43 percent of the vote and less than half of the Reichstag.


16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
The Reichstag (like everything else) became less relevant once they burned it down.

So it’s safe to say that not every German was huge supporter of the Nazi party and its leadership. But after a while, criticizing the government became more and more hazardous to one’s health. How does a population who can’t openly object to their government blow off the built-up popular anger among friends? With jokes.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
Austrians started it.

For many Germans, laughing at Hitler within their homes was the most they could do. Far from brainwashed, they were fed up with the laws forcing them to do things against their will. As Rudolph Herzog writes in “Dead Funny: Telling Jokes in Hitler’s Germany,” these jokes could get you in a concentration camp or in front of a firing squad. These are the jokes people living under Hitler and the Third Reich told each other.

1. The crude behavior of regime officials offended Germans immediately.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
The German word “wählen” means “to dial someone” and “to vote for someone.”

2. Did you notice a lot of Nazis were overweight? So did the Germans.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
Sounds like someone could almost be American.

3. Not all Germans were thrilled to greet each other with “Heil Hitler.”

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
Failing to make the greeting could get your kids taken away.

4. Everyone knew who really set the Reichstag fire.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
The SA were the Nazis’ unofficial thug army.

5. Clergy were the first to point out Hitler’s hypocrisy.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

6. Germans wondered why the Nazis pretended to have a justice system.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
They felt the laws were arbitrary in the first place.

7. Many Germans knew of some concentration camps and what happened to dissenters there.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
Rumors abounded in Hitler’s Germany.

8. Dachau was the one everyone knew about.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
This shows the risk of telling jokes in the wrong company.

9. German Jews who escaped joked about those who stayed.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
The punchline asks which was more dangerous?

10. The people knew what was coming.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
They weren’t prepared for the scope of it.

11. Their Italian allies weren’t exempt from ridicule.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
This was at the beginning.

12. Italian inability didn’t go unnoticed.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
The end came quick for Italy.

13. After a while, the German people felt stupid for believing it all.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

14. They got more cutting as time passed.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime
Someone was executed by guillotine for telling this one.

15. Telling this joke was considered a misdemeanor:

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

16. The end became apparent in jokes long before the reality of the situation.

16 jokes Germans could die for telling under the Nazi regime

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