Who at Secret Service came up with Team Trump’s gay-Holocaust pin?

The Secret Service has reportedly given Donald Trump’s presidential campaign a lapel pin that key staffers can wear to identity themselves.

The question is why the Secret Service would choose a pin that looks like it came from the Holocaust.

I noticed the pin a few months back on the jacket of Trump chief of staff Corey Lewandowki. The pin, an upside down triangle made up of two colors that look like pink and purple, struck me as odd, and oddly familiar, at the time.

by default 2016-05-24 at 11.06.55 AM

I didn’t think about it again until this morning, when Trump adviser Michael Cohen was on CNN, sporting the same pin.

trump-aide-pin

Friends on Twitter suggested it might be something from the Secret Service. (Members of Congress sport their own unique pin to identify themselves to security, and the White House has its own version as well.)

And in fact, Vocativ confirmed that the pin was issued by the Secret Service.

But the problem remains: Why use a pin that looks straight out of the Holocaust? And it does. The Nazis forced many of their prisoners to wear inverted triangles, the color of which indicated the particular class of prisoner. For example, gays sported pink, while criminals wore green, political prisoners wore red, “asocials” wore black, and Jehovah’s Witnesses wore purple. Jews got an extra triangle added as well.

So the Trump button is a combination of the ones the Nazis forced gays (pink) and Jehovah’s Witnesses (purple) to wear in concentration camps.

nazi_camp_marks-724x1000

Here is a specimen of the Nazi’s gay emblem:

nazi-pink-triangle

An extremely rare specimen of an actual pink triangle the Nazis forced gay concentration camp prisoners to wear.

Gays in Nazi Germany were considered a threat to German purity. The Nazis arrested 100,000 men, with 10,000 to 15,000 sent to concentration camps to die.

Gays in Nazi Germany were considered a threat to German purity. The Nazis arrested 100,000 men, with 10,000 to 15,000 sent to concentration camps to die.

In more recent times, the pink triangle was a symbol of gay liberation and pride from the 1970s through the early 1990s, before the rainbow became the prevalent symbol of the LGBT movement. The gay pride version of the triangle is decidedly pink, and looks remarkably like the Trump Secret Service pin. See examples here, here, and here.

Congresswoman and former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi speaks at the Pink Triangle Ceremonies in 1999 and 2012. Photo courtesy of Friends of the Pink Triangle and The PinkTriangle.com.

Congresswoman and former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi speaks at the Pink Triangle Ceremonies in 1999 and 2012. Photo courtesy of Friends of the Pink Triangle and The PinkTriangle.com.

It’s bad enough that Trump’s triangle (bi)color looks awfully pink from a distance, but regardless of color, what could have possibly crossed the Secret Service’s mind to choose an inverted triangle as a symbol of presidential security when the inverted triangle is, and forever will be, a symbol of Nazi persecution?

Even though I’m certain it was a historical oversight, rather than a bad joke about Trump’s more extreme policies, it’s weird — and weirdly inappropriate.

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Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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  • LuluB

    They’re the ones wearing it. Which means in context, they would be the persecuted not the ones persecuting.

  • ComradeRutherford

    “since WW 11, no one on earth thinks the Swastika is anything but a symbol of hate, destruction, fear and death.”

    Dude, you mean only the Western World. Asia still uses that symbol *everywhere* in it’s original meaning. It’s on almost every sign in India, for example.

  • ComradeRutherford

    And they hand them out by the handful to crew at the events. I got one from his appearance in Vermont. It says “R1” on the top edge.

  • Duke Woolworth

    The triangle in question is left half purple and right half gold. Given the fact that most Americans aren’t historians, it could be totally innocent. Or not.

  • Yolandadmanno

    “my room mate Lori Is getting paid on the internet $98/hr”…..!tc310urtwo days ago grey MacLaren. P1 I bought after earning 18,512 Dollars..it was my previous month’s payout..just a little over.17k Dollars Last month..3-5 hours job a day…with weekly payouts..it’s realy the simplest. job I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months. ago. and now making over hourly. 87 Dollars…Learn. More right Here !tc310u:➽:➽:.➽.➽.➽.➽ http://GlobalSuperJobsReportsEmploymentsGoodsGetPay-Hour$98…. .★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★::::::!tc310u….

  • Some things become tainted and therefore unusable without people connecting the word or symbol to the taint. Everyone gets that but some people decide to be assholes about it anyway.

  • Edna Jackson

    “my room mate Lori Is getting paid on the internet $98/hr”…..!te894urtwo days ago grey MacLaren. P1 I bought after earning 18,512 Dollars..it was my previous month’s payout..just a little over.17k Dollars Last month..3-5 hours job a day…with weekly payouts..it’s realy the simplest. job I have ever Do.. I Joined This 7 months. ago. and now making over hourly. 87 Dollars…Learn. More right Here !te894u:➽:➽:.➽.➽.➽.➽ http://GlobalSuperJobsReportsEmploymentsSquadGetPay-Hour$98…. .★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★::::::!te894u….,..

  • chris10858

    Bigger question is why would security services rely on a pin as proof that someone belongs in a restricted area? Do they not realize those things can be forged pretty easily?

  • That was the first thing that went through my head too. “An article by John… and it’s not Bernie Bashing!”. I quickly dropped something to see if it fell up.

  • uhhuhh

    You’re really so obsessed that you troll stories that don’t even have anything to do with Clinton and Sanders? Get help.

  • lk

    In the first place the point of my post was that an upside triangle is still a
    triangle, which is what my comment was about and lets be clear, the Native
    Americans also used the Nazi symbol as a sort of infinity, but since WW 11, no
    one on earth thinks the Swastika is anything but a symbol of hate, destruction,
    fear and death. I doubt that anyone would walk around with a swastika on their
    Tee shirt and feel comfortable anywhere on earth with the exception of a White
    Power meeting.

  • Webster

    I’m just relieved (and surprised!) that HillaryBlog didn’t try to blame it on the Bernie campaign…

  • goulo

    And a swastika also does not necessarily imply Nazism (e.g. it’s also a traditional Buddhist symbol), but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be a dubious choice to use one as a politician’s lapel pin.

  • Sharon Aly

    Could it have been on purpose? Secret Service aware, but banking on the Trumpettes not being aware?

  • lk

    You just have to let it go, a square, no matter how it is displayed, is still a square

  • lk

    The pin speeks for itself and the Trumpenstein campaign

  • Sally

    I’d say it’s perfectly appropriate, given the hatred Trump and his crew spout off every day.

  • It clearly didn’t even register on anyone there. Upside down triangles. Seriously.

  • Quilla

    Once upon a time I was told that the world (and the US Government) was run by C+ students.

    I have to wonder if today’s movers and shakers have even been to school.

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