It’s time to welcome yet another politician into the ‘open mouth, insert foot’ club for the erroneous use of Holocaust metaphors when trying to make a political point. Our newest inductee is Tennessee Senator Stacey Campfield, a Republican who really, really doesn’t like Obamacare. How much doesn’t he like it? Well, just this morning he posted this ‘Thought of the Day‘ on his blog:
Democrats bragging about the number of mandatory sign ups for Obamacare is like Germans bragging about the number of manditory (sic) sign ups for “train rides” for Jews in the 40s.
He quickly backtracked, telling Nashville’s News 2 that he “is not minimizing loss of life” during the Holocaust, just trying to make a point. “It is not an accurate portrayal for the administration to brag and signups for Obamacare when it’s mandatory,” he added.
Republicans and Democrats alike have come out against Campfield’s blog post, with GOP party Chair Chris Devaney releasing a statement calling for the senator to apologize to Jews. “While Stacey Campfield routinely makes remarks that are over the top today’s comments are ignorant and repugnant,” he wrote. “No political or policy disagreement should ever be compared to the suffering endured by an entire generation of people.”
Campfield has since published another post, titled “Here You Go.” He wrote, “I regret that some people miss the point of my post. It was not to offend. It was to warn.”
In no way was my post meant to diminish or detract from the pain, suffering and loss of human life that occurred during this dark time in human history. Instead the post was meant to draw attention to the loss of freedom that we are currently experiencing. I stand by my steadfast opposition to Obamacare.
And I stand by my pretty steadfast belief that arbitrary, inflammatory Holocaust metaphors such as this one do little to move political discourse forward and generally obscure productive conversation entirely. If you can’t articulate your argument without a reference to Hitler or Nazis, it’s probably not a very strong argument.