I find the rise in UKIP's popularity absolutely terrifying, largely because I can't stand the thought of somebody making sweeping generalisations about a particular religion, gender or race and actually being in a position of power where they are able to do something about it, and encourage others to agree with their sentiments.
Yet, scary as it is to see, I find myself not all that surprised. After all, people are unhappy with the way this country is being run (at the time of writing, #CameronMustGo was trending on Twitter) and UKIP are there giving many of these people the answers they need.
It's an extreme example, I realise that, but each time I hear about another UKIP victory, I am reminded of a particular subject I studied in History at school. This particular topic fascinated me because it took something horrific and explained it by looking at the events which took place in the years prior to the event itself.
Many years ago, there was a country so destroyed by war that the people had been pushed to breaking point. They had to take wheelbarrows full of money to the local shop to pay for a loaf of bread and were in need of a government who could come in and sort out the mess, not one who seemed to just be making everything so much worse.
(I realise we're not exactly there, but another few years of keeping the poor poor and preventing anyone but the wealthy from getting a decent education and who knows where we'll end up.)
Amidst this vacuum of despair and economic collapse, a man came along who started to talk sense. He gave the people someone to blame. Told them it was their fault and if we get rid of them then everything would be better.
When things aren't going well, it's always useful to have a scapegoat. Blame the immigrants; blame the Muslims; blame the Jews; blame the homosexuals. Pick one and everything will supposedly be OK again. (Right?!)
After a while, this man's popularity grew and grew until he found himself in a position of power . . . and then World War II happened.
It's alarming to see UKIP gaining such a following simply because I can see a world under UKIP being so full of divide, anger and hate.
There is a culture of fear in this country which won't go away with more scapegoating and, though I don't believe anyone in UKIP is the new Adolf Hitler, the ideas that the party are preaching are just as terrifying to me.
After all, Hitler didn't show up telling everyone to kill the Jews. It all started with looking for someone to blame.Suggest a correction