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NJDC Denounces Reported Hitler Signs at WI Union Protest

NJDC — February 17, 2011 – 4:34 pm | Abusive Holocaust Rhetoric Comments (1) Add a comment

The National Jewish Democratic Council denounces the reported Hitler signs at the union protest in Wisconsin. As we have said repeatedly, invoking the Holocaust to make a political point is never acceptable.

We reiterate and stand by our commitment to call out abusive Holocaust rhetoric on both sides of the aisle when we see it. We implore others to do the same so that we can end this caustic trend.


Jean-Pierre Fenyo | February 17, 2011 – 8:44 pm

Am I to understand that that state’s Governor is not doing things that are dictatorial and plutocratically fascistic? What if the union protestors would use the image of Pol Pot or Idi Amin, or Benito Mussolini instead of Hitler? Would their point be just as ‘effectively’ made? Would younger people suddenly Google these notoriously brutal, totally unethical, Historical figures? Questions abound.
‘Holocaust’ exploiting rhetoric is one thing, but was not Hitler also responsible for introducing total Fascism into Germany in an effort to kill off every last vestige of The Weimar Republic?
I think the Wisconsin unions comparing the state’s anti-democratic Governor to Hitler is counter-productive but not necessarily because it may somehow fit the definition of abusive Holocaust-rhetoric, but rather because this governor is not like Hitler and constantly bringing up Hitler is just as bad as too rarely bringing up Hitler. Repetitive use of anything tends to make it less shocking and less effective when the time comes that it may really be necessary to do (G-D forbid that that should happen once more).
Perhaps all comparatives between contemporary public figures and Historical figures are counter-productive. Had we felt safe enough to demonstrate against the Nazis the day after Kristallnacht; would we have compared Hitler to Haman? Would non-Jews have understood the comparative?? Would they have cared???
I think these are valid questions.
I think the constant use of Hitler tends to diminish the seriousness with which the World should remember the Horrific Crimes Against All Humanity that the Nazis and Fascists perpetrated.
IF taken in the context of what has been going on lately, especially given the abuses perpetrated by Beck and others of his extreme political identity, I agree with the NJDC’s stance.
IF not; then I worry that merely issuing these kinds of denunciations will begin to sound like an exercise in futility!
We need to do what a younger Ted Koppel would probably have done by now: put together a Town Hall kind of major, two- to-three-hour-long, Prime Time, most highly publicised national debate at which the key principals would be invited to debate one another and be questioned and commented-upon by an audience truly representative of the General American Public.

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