Misusing the “N” Word (And it’s not the one you think)

Preamble: Let me state quickly that I originally wrote this post to tackle both sides use of this word, and I just got carried away with my emotions and focused on Glenn Beck. I apologize for this. Liberals are just as guilty of using this word in reference to things like the Arizona Immigration Law as conservatives are of using it to describe policy. Please keep this disclaimer in mind as you read

We’ve all heard somebody say it. Somewhere, maybe on the playground at school when you were a kid, maybe discussing politics with your friends, maybe from a popular talk show host, we’ve all heard the word thrown around. Often, it is associated with the inferiority of minority races, but it can be extrapolated to represent a more major form of classism, or even a government structure leaning towards profiling for purposes of its own gain, but anyway we use it, the word is inappropriate. The word I am talking about, of course, is “Nazi.”

Oh sure, everyone’s said it. Sometimes, we shoot it off as a joke. Maybe your friend told you a new rule and you call him a Nazi for his overbearing behavior. I’m not saying I’m saintly here, either. I’ve done it before. I’ve even laughed at it before. But the idea that we can even begin to imply that states of affairs or occurrences in this country come anywhere close to the horrors of Nazi Germany is not only ludicrous, but insulting beyond my ability to describe it.

Glenn Beck, I’m looking at you.

Now, as the name of this blog implies, I consider myself strongly conservative. That said, I try to be the very first in line to call one of our own on his or her mistake. As a political policy, I feel it makes one look stronger to be able to distinguish those who rightly agree with him from those who wrongly agree with him. Not to mention, I’ve no small disdain for most conservative talk show hosts (and I’ve made note of that historically on this blog). That said, I’m sure the earlier linked video blew things out of proportion. The fact that Beck has used the word “Nazi” to refer to the Obama administration is abhorrent, though, and I feel it is a trend, not just among Beck, which must be extinguished.

Let me paint you a picture. Imagine you are on a train car, stuffed shoulder to shoulder with hundreds of other men and women, no heat save each others’ bodies to protect you from the blistering cold outside. You’re filled far beyond capacity, hungry, tired, and scared. You’ve been separated from your family, and rumor has it that you’re being shipped to your death. At best case, however, you’ll be sent to a camp to be starved and overworked, isolated and possibly tortured, all because you possess certain features or belief that one man believes is not part of his “master race.”

I bet you can’t do it. I certainly can’t. I can’t even imagine what it felt like to be a German Jew in the Holocaust. My mother, of entirely German ancestry, was born in America. She is not Jewish, nor is anyone in her family Jewish. She was born in 1948, after Hitler’s atrocities had been stopped. Mention the Holocaust to her, however, and she twinges with guilt. That’s right, guilt. She feels the atrocities of the Nazi’s were so strong that she, in even sharing a bloodline with their race, is somehow remotely responsible. Jews (and other so-called “lesser human beings” in Hitler’s eyes) were isolated, punished, and slain in the millions for the slanted utopian philosophies of one crazed dictator. The word “Nazi” is synonymous with this man’s policies. Is this really a word we ought to be using to describe the policies of Barack Obama.

Let me make this real simple for you: no. The word “Nazi” should not be taken lightly. Dropping it in the political arena should be akin to shouting “bomb” in an airport. Anyone linking someone’s policies to those of the Nazi’s (given of course that said figure is not racially profiling by the millions, and slaying those he isolates) ought to be completely stripped of their credibility. I am not lending my support to President Obama with this argument. I certainly believe he has some questionable, even down-right wrong policies, but President Obama is not a Nazi.

Glenn Beck has every right to speak his mind. He has a First Amendment right to go on live television and adduce Barack Obama’s “Nazi” policies. He is absolutely entitled to this right, and I do not wish to take it away from me. All I can do is use my right not to listen, and hope others start to do the same.

That’s all for now, folks. Good night, and have a great rest of the week.

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