I saw another “Obama Supporters are just like Hitler Supporters” meme going across Facebook yesterday and it simply outraged me. Doesn’t anyone on the conservative side remember how angry it made them when people compared the leaders they voted for to Hitler? Or do they not remember?
Can we just all agree that – unless something really bizarre (or horrible) happens in our future – no president we ever elect is going to A) Be like Hitler or B) Lead anything like the Holocaust. Does anyone making these comparisons even know what Hitler did during the Holocaust? I mean – I’m no expert – but no matter how much I ever disagreed with Bush I never considered anything he did similar to what Hitler did to the Jews. And I keep up with Obama’s presidency pretty closely and I’m pretty sure he’s not doing anything comparable either. It’s simply offensive and seriously inaccurate to try to compare Hitler to ANY of our presidents using some sort of insulting graphic on Facebook.
ELEVEN MILLION PEOPLE DIED DURING THE HOLOCAUST.
Six million were Jews. 1 million were children.
And they weren’t killed humanely – if there is even such a thing when children are involved. No. They were forced to work and often were tortured and starved before they were finally killed in horrific ways.
Here’s an online lesson about the killing of Poles and Jews at Auschwitz – which was only ONE concentration camp. Maybe people making comparisons to ANY president and Hitler should check out that lesson and refresh their memory a bit. Or maybe check out the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and some of the lessons on the Holocaust they have there.
I just feel like that maybe people need to educate themselves on the tragedy of the Holocaust and the deaths and torment under Hitler’s reign before they compare any president – Republican or Democrat – to Hitler. The USHMMM actual mentions this when they discuss Holocaust denial:
Distinct from denial and distortion is misuse of the Holocaust. Misuse occurs when aspects of the Holocaust are compared to events, situations, or people where there is no genocide or genocidal intent. Examples of Holocaust misuse include: claiming that Israeli-government actions are equivalent to those of the Nazis; equating the treatment of animals with the treatment of Jews and other victims during the Holocaust; labeling political opponents as Nazis; or misusing the terminology of the Holocaust to assert that particular actions are the same as actions undertaken by the Nazis.
Holocaust denial, distortion, and misuse all undermine the understanding of history.
My friend Courtney sent me this article which references the Hitler/Nazi comparisons:
You would think, then, that where they are invoked to draw a parallel or make a point, it would be done with a respect for the incalculable evil the Nazis represent. You would think people would tread carefully, not because of the potential insult to a given politician (they are big boys and girls) but because to do otherwise profanes the profound and renders trivial that which ought to be held sacred by anyone who regards himself as a truly human being.
But in modern America, unfortunately, rhetoric often starts over the top and goes up from there. So fine, George W. Bush is “a smirking chimp.” Fine, Barack Obama is “a Chicago thug.” We have a Constitution, after all, and it says we can say whatever we want. It doesn’t say it has to be intelligent.
And yes, you are even protected if you liken Obama or Bush to Hitler. Yet every time I hear that, it makes me cringe for what it says about our collective propensity for historical amnesia and our retarded capacity for reverence. Once upon a lifetime ago, 6 million people with DNA, names and faces just like you and I, were butchered with gleeful sadism and mechanistic dispatch.
You and I may no longer respect one another, but is it asking too much that we still respect them?
Thank you. I just had to get this off my chest because I just can’t handle ANY president – past or present – being compared to Hitler or his actions being compared to the Holocaust. A lot of inflammatory speech angers me but I usually can let it slide. But this? I just can’t. It’s ignorant and enraging and insulting to whatever political party aligns themselves with the president being insulted, as well as insulting to the actual survivors and family of victims of the holocaust.