So Mandalorian actor Gina Carano posted that Democrats hating someone for their political views and publicly criticizing them is no different than the Nazis whipping up hatred against the Jews in 1930s Germany. For which she’s now been fired.
This is a seriously dumbass argument.
First off, being criticized for supporting Trump or working in his administration — or firing people who participated in the Sedition Day insurrection — is not the same as condemning someone for who they are, which is what happened in Germany. And it wasn’t just Hitler’s rhetoric; anti-Semitism has been around for centuries. Germans didn’t need much incentive to turn on Jews or turn a blind eye to them losing their rights and eventually being incarcerated and killed.
And if she’s really that concerned about dehumanizing language, has she looked at the 21st century Republican Party? The party that equates Muslims with terrorists? Is becoming more and more blatant about anti-Semitism? For the past two decades conservatives have branded liberals and Democrats as anti-God, anti-American, terrorist lovers; in the Trump era we’ve been labeled as agents of Satan, possessed by demons and of course Satanic pedophile cannibals under the Qanon theories. Just a month ago Trump was whipping up the Sedition Day crowd with stories about how liberals were stealing his wonderful, miraculous victory, and stealing “their” country away from them.
Not to mention specifically violent rhetoric. “Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some assembly required.” Sarah Palin’s crosshairs political ad. Greene talking about the need to shoot Pelosi. Trump always letting his voters know he’s fine if they attack his opponents, then the whole Jan. 6 attempted coup (Carano apparently spread the stolen election myth in her social media). There are lots more examples. But whenever someone brings them up, Republicans squeal about how they’re being oppressed — how can anyone suggest their slightly hyperbolic passionate political speech could make anyone violent?
So if Carano is only now worried about harsh political rhetoric and its dehumanizing effect — and apparently not about literally violent rhetoric from our side — sorry, she’s lying to us or to herself. I’ve been seeing this kind of bullshit for years. The guy who told me in 2005 that Christians were as persecuted as Jews in 1930s Germany (I pointed out that Bush won the election partly on the basis of being so Christian — not something any Jews pulled off in Nazi Germany). The claims during the Obama years that Christians would be stuffed into FEMA concentration camps. The more recent shrieking that if Biden wins Christianity will be destroyed in America, Christians will be shot, etc., etc.
As C.S.Lewis said, it’s an appealing lie because thinking your enemies are monsters justifies you refusing their requests. Sure, the feminazis say they want equality but if their real goal is to seize all the power and enslave men, well, there’s no point in making any concessions, right? For the more extreme cases who feel they’re losing “their” country, the other side’s evil justifies striking first — you’re a hero, just like Han shooting Greedo!
I would actually be open to figuring out whether what people say on social media or at least some of what they say should be off-limits as grounds for firing. But that’s not the case right now, and treating Carano as a singular unique person who shouldn’t be fired if her employer dislikes what he said — well that’s not the hill I’d die on.