Author's note: I wrote this for a history assignment and thought I'd publish it here. I hope you like it!
Hitler Is the New God
Setting: A Catholic elementary school in Germany, circa 1940. Students sit at their desks, waiting for the teacher. Herr Schwartz enters. He wears a Swastika armband.
Students: Who's he? What's he doing here? Where's Father Meier? Etc.
Herr Schwartz: Silence! (The students quiet down.) I am Herr Schwartz, your teacher.
(Franz raises his hand.)
Herr Schwartz: Yes, young man, what is your name?
Franz: My name's Franz Schmidt. Where's Father Meier?
Herr Schwartz: Father Meier has been relieved of his post.
Franz: What does that mean?
Magdalena: You mean he was sacked?
Herr Schwartz: You are not to speak out of turn! Tell me your name.
Magdalena: Magdalena Brandt.
Herr Schwartz: Yes, your former teacher has been, as you put it, "sacked." He was unfit to teach in the new regime.
(Ludwig raises his hand. Herr Schwartz points to him.)
Ludwig: My name is Ludwig Muller. I don't think my father will approve of a layman teaching here.
Herr Schwartz: Fortunately, your father's opinion is of no consequence. In addition to many other improvements, parents no longer have any control over the school. Remember, you belong not to your family, but to your country. And with me in charge of this class, you shall learn how to serve the Fuhrer, the great leader who will guide Germany to supremacy. (He holds out his right hand.) Stand and repeat after me: Heil Hitler!
Students: (copying his stance) Heil Hitler!
Herr Schwartz: Good. The rest of you will now introduce yourselves.
(As the students state their names, lights go down then come back up, indicating the passage of time. Franz, Magdalena, and Ludwig talk among themselves as they eat lunch.)
Magdalena: I still don't understand why Father Meier was sacked.
Franz: Maybe it's because of what he said a few days ago, about the Jews.
Ludwig: What did he say?
Franz: He said that since Jesus was a Jew, and so were Mary and the Apostles, it doesn't make sense for us to hate them or persecute them the way the Nazis do.
Magdalena: You mean the Nazis found out about that and got rid of him?
Franz: I think so.
Ludwig: How could they have found out?
Magdalena: Maybe someone told their parents about it and their parents reported Father Meier.
Ludwig: I wish they hadn't. I don't like Herr Schwartz.
(The lights flash again.)
Herr Schwartz: To close the day, we will recite these lines dedicated to the Fuhrer. Repeat after me: "Fuhrer, my Fuhrer, bequeathed to me by the Lord…"
(The students look at each other, confused.)
Herr Schwartz: Well?
Ludwig: Excuse me, sir, but we usually close with the Rosary.
Herr Schwartz: This is not a Catholic class anymore, but a German one. Now, repeat the line. I shall not ask again.
Students: (reluctantly) Fuhrer, my Fuhrer, bequeathed to me by the Lord…
(The students repeat each line after Herr Schwartz.)
Herr Schwartz: "…Protect and preserve me as long as I live!
Thou hast rescued Germany from deepest distress,
I thank the today for my daily bread,
Abide thou long with me, forsake me not,
Fuhrer, my Fuhrer, my faith and my life!
Heil, my Fuhrer!"
Herr Schwartz: Good. Class dismissed.
(The students begin to gather their things and leave the room.)
Franz: I don't like the new prayer. It sounds blasphemous.
Magdalena: Was it a prayer? Herr Schwartz said it was dedicated to Hitler.
Franz: It was dedicated to Hitler, all right, but if you replace "Fuhrer" with "God" you've got a prayer.
Magdalena: You mean we were praying to Hitler?
Franz: It sure sounded like it. It looks like Hitler has replaced God.
Ludwig: You're right. What will they do next, replace the Crucifix with a picture of him?
Magdalena: Maybe. I'd say the country is in trouble. (Blackout.)
END OF PLAY