Texas Republicans are being called out for a misjudged Facebook post in which they said that 'socialism' was responsible for the Holocaust.
In the post, which was published on International Holocaust Memorial Day and has since been deleted, the Harris County GOP said:
Leftism kills. In memory to the six million Jews lost to Nazi hatred in the name of National Socialism. We will never forget.
The Harris County Republican Party's post quickly drew criticism from Facebook users and Jewish leaders.
Speaking to the Washington Post, Jonathan Greenblatt, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, said:
The Holocaust was born out of hatred for Jews, pure and simple.
The notion that political ‘leftism’ led to millions of Jews being killed in the Holocaust is bizarre and false.
On Monday, the Harris County GOP issued a statement regards the post, saying that the original language was 'inartful', but standing by its argument:
A few accused the post of being anti-Semitic. It was nothing of the sort.
All Americans should be on guard against the dangers of ideologies that demean the value of individual human lives to the collective.
That includes socialism in all forms, whether 20th-century German National Socialism or today’s glossed-over socialism that is condoned and even promoted by those who should know better.
There have been a number of attempts to label the Nazi party socialists or leftists, reports the Huffington Post. Conservative pundits have attempted to make the link because the Nazi Party's full name was the 'National-Socialist German Workers Party', with the word 'socialist' in it.
However, many historians have pushed back against these arguments. Writing in an op-ed in the Washington Post, historian John Brioche wrote:
You can empty out or dumb down the definition of fascism until anything you dislike fits the bill, but don’t expect to hear from actual historians, even if we usually don’t care to dignify such terrible history.
Another historian, Mike Stuchbertr, took to Twitter to argue against the common misdemeanour, too. In a series of tweets, he argued that the Nazis were fascists who arose in reaction to the left.
The Nazis were fascists. Indisputably. They drew their ideology from Italy's fascists, who arose in reaction to the Left.
The Nazi's fascism was also directly opposed to many of the central tenets that now define the left, including gay rights, pluralism, women's rights, and cultural diversity.
However, when questioned about this by the Huffington Post, Simpson refused to budge. In another statement, he said:
Any ideology that demeans the value of individual human lives in favor of the collective is evil. By contrast, the greatest force for freedom and betterment of every person’s life has been the American system of private enterprise, ordered liberty, and limited government.
We stand firm in our commitment to those American ideals
People on Twitter, however, echoed the argument that Nazis were fascists.
HT Huff Post