With cries of 'racist' and 'Nazi,' Democrats betray our history

With cries of 'racist' and 'Nazi,' Democrats betray our history
© Greg Nash

The repeated accusations of racism from members of the Democratic Party have taken away from the impact and meaning of what it truly means to be racist. As a Jewish American and a proud moderate Republican, it is abhorrent for me to watch terms like “Gestapo” and “Nazi” thrown around as easily as “you’re wrong” or “I disagree.”

It is illogical, unnecessary, and in its most dangerous form, it encourages political and cultural unrest. The people lobbing out these terms either don’t know history or, worse, they know exactly what they are doing in order to make political gains.

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It is most heartbreaking to hear this kind of rhetoric from Democratic Rep. Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenDem rep: Pelosi 'needs to do what's right' and impeach Trump Pelosi: Trump 'is engaged in a cover-up' The Memo: Trump allies see impeachment push backfiring on Democrats MORE of Tennessee, that state’s first Jewish member of Congress. Leading the way in this reprehensible behavior, he has compared Republicans to Joseph Goebbels, Adolf Hitler’s propaganda henchman during World War II.

 

It’s not just him, though. Incredibly, on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Rep. Yvette ClarkeYvette Diane ClarkeDem lawmakers urge FCC to scrutinize broadcast workforce diversity Hillicon Valley: House votes to reinstate net neutrality rules | GOP lawmakers lay into Twitter, Facebook over censorship claims | Amazon workers push company on climate | Bill targets algorithmic bias | Yahoo to pay 7M in breach settlement Dems introduce bill targeting bias in algorithms MORE (D-N.Y.) stood in front of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office in Manhattan and boldly stated, “We are standing in front of a building that has become the headquarters for the Gestapo of the United States of America.”

The Gestapo? Really? Unequivocally, Clarke compared American men and women who help enforce immigration law to the most vicious, ruthless group of Nazis, who targeted and helped ship out millions of innocent Jewish men, women and children to concentration camps to be murdered in cold blood. That seems to me like the theatre of the absurd.

As some Democrats and leftist pundits continue to call President TrumpDonald John TrumpNASA exec leading moon mission quits weeks after appointment The Hill's Morning Report — After contentious week, Trump heads for Japan Frustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' MORE mentally unfit for office, I ask, how is there any semblance of a connection between ICE and the Gestapo? There isn’t! Clark’s parallel is outrageous and utterly disgusting. Simply put, it is un-American and not fit for office.

In the most shocking and utterly disingenuous move, some Democrats did far worse than ignorantly throw out disgraceful epithets. They took action. Reps. Keith EllisonKeith Maurice EllisonDemocrats face new civil war in primary fight 18 state attorneys general call on Justice Dept to release Mueller report Keith Ellison: Evidence points to Trump being 'sympathetic' to white nationalist point of view MORE (D-Minn.) and Gregory MeeksGregory Weldon MeeksLobbying World Treasury expected to miss Dem deadline on Trump tax returns Congress should look into its own taxes and travel, not just Trump's MORE (D-N.Y.) went to an event to meet and have dialogue with two of the most notorious anti-Semites in the world, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and the U.S.-based extremist Louis Farrakhan. It was hosted by Rouhani, again of Iran, a country that has called for Israel to be “wiped off the map,” while leading the world in state-sponsored terrorism.

Farrakhan, a racist and an anti-Semite who has been labeled as such by the Southern Poverty Law Center, has accused Israel of being behind the 9/11 terror attacks. Let me repeat that: The man who Democrats are cozying up to over dinner has accused Jews of conspiring in the largest mass murder and terror attack ever on U.S. soil. This isn’t just silly or ignorant. This is appalling. It defies common sense and intelligence.

Could you imagine the outrage if top Republican leaders met with white supremacist David Duke? The outrage would be never-ending. It’s not without irony in this piece that I note Duke himself has repeatedly denied the Holocaust and strongly purported his anti-Semitic views. This sad fact highlights the hatred for the Jewish state and diaspora that exists today from both the far left and right.

As some Democrats fly under the radar with these types of cohorts and statements, largely free of any kind of critical media, you can bet tomorrow or the next day, a Republican will once again be targeted as a white supremacist Nazi. More than likely, that could be President Trump.

I grew up with and personally know the generations of Trumps, including his father, Fred, his mother, Mary, his sister, Maryanne, and his brother, Robert. I have known Donald since he was three years old, and say what you will about the president, I can tell you for sure he is not a racist. He’s a good man, who doesn’t have a racist bone in his body.

In fact, it has been fascinating to watch Democrats and liberal thought leaders adore the man for so many years, proudly take pictures with him, take his money, and take him for everything he could offer in terms of political connections. Yet, as soon as Trump officially became a candidate for president, with an “R” next to his name, they started calling him Hitler.

However, I also want to note that I’m no cheerleader for President Trump. I am a proud moderate Republican who has supported Democrats in the past and present, including Sen. Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNo agreement on budget caps in sight ahead of Memorial Day recess Ex-White House photographer roasts Trump: 'This is what a cover up looked like' under Obama Pelosi: Trump 'is engaged in a cover-up' MORE (D-N.Y.), Sen. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth Gillibrand2020 Democrats join striking McDonald's workers Fox News contributor Campos-Duffy compares abortion to slavery 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Carolyn MaloneyCarolyn Bosher MaloneyHouse rebukes Mulvaney's efforts to rein in consumer bureau On The Money: Congress, White House aim to include debt limit increase in spending deal | McConnell optimistic budget deal near | Carson defends HUD eviction plan | Senate votes to undo tax hike on Gold Star families Carson on HUD eviction plan: 'You take care of your own first' MORE (D-N.Y.), to mention a few. As someone who typically gets directly involved in fundraising and networking, I did not get involved in the Trump campaign at all.

When everyone is a racist, no one is a racist. To Congressman Cohen, and to some Democrats across the country, for the sake of history and politics today, please drop the World War II German references. It is disrespectful to the Holocaust, its victims and survivors. It is a disservice to the integrity and the principles of who we are and what we stand for. To quote Robert Perry, chairman of the National Trust for the Humanities, “America is a dream. A dream that allows for freedom, hard work, safety, opportunity, fairness and equality.” Let’s not contradict that reality with opportunism.

Earle I. Mack is a former U.S. ambassador to Finland and chairman emeritus of the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law in New York City.