Can you imagine getting through life with the surname Hitler? It can be difficult enough getting through life when you share the same name as somebody well-known, but the hardship one likely endures in sharing a name with possibly the most infamous man of the 20th century must take its toll on people.
Just this week, the Australian media had a great time on reporting about an African American man on Twitter who was getting annoyed at being mistaken for the Australian Liberal MP Peter Dutton. In no way are we equating Peter Dutton to the long-deceased Nazi leader, but it only took a few days of a Tweetstorm directed in the 30 year-old Americans direction to be annoyed - imagine the toll that would take if it was his day-to-day reality for his entire life.
Think about your own life for a moment - have you ever met anyone with the surname Hitler? Much like how Hitlers distinctive moustache style very quickly went out of fashion after World War 2, the surname Hitler seems to have largely vanished. One would assume that those people who shared the name subsequently changed it.
But Hitlers do remain in the world. The question is: why?
Surely they have a reason not to change their name. A reason to endure the day-to-day jokes and questions asked about the name.
Feature documentary Meet The Hitlers seeks to find out why people with the surname Hitler are happy to get through life with it. Why would they keep it? And, maybe more interestingly, what sort of effect has it had on their lives.
The film raises important questions about the meaning of names, and explores complex issues like immigration, racism, and tolerance.
"I could not come up with a reason to change my name...Why do it? You lose all of your identity."
- Gene Douglas Hitler
"I would never want to change it. You like your last name. I like mine"
- Emily Hitler
"Everywhere I go where I have to show my ID, I can see people thinking about my name. They ask me for two IDs. For 3 IDs".
- Hitler Gutierrez
Meet The Hitlers airs on SBS VICELAND Friday 18 December at 11:55PM.