I keep hearing that those expressing their concerns about health care reform, er, health insurance reform are carrying swastikas and making nasty comparisons between Obama and Hitler. Indeed, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) even said that protesters showing up at town hall meetings were doing this:
The implied assertion in these statements is that those crazy people who are protesting the proposed reforms cannot be taken seriously because they are making outrageous comparisons.
First, while I don't doubt that there may be some fringe, nut jobs who are making this comparison, other than Democrats, like Rep. Pelosi, making unsubstantiated charges, I have not actually seen any health care protesters carrying swastikas outside of town hall meetings. If you have, please let me know.
Second, I do recall lots of folks on the left spending a good portion of the last administration making Bush-Hitler comparisons. And to the best of my knowledge, no one on the left complained about these comparisons or worried that their concerns about President Bush might be discounted because of the outrageous conduct of others on their side. To me, the failure of any Democrats or those with left-leaning beliefs to denounce Bush-Hitler comparisons makes their current protestations illegitimate. What is good for the goose is good for the gander. By allowing the Bush-Hitler comparisons a pass, Democrats cannot now complain that people on the right are making a similar complaint about President Obama.
On a personal level, I don't agree with the alleged Obama-Hitler comparison. Instead, Obama strikes me more as a modern day Woodrow Wilson. But the fact that someone might make the comparison does not truly offend me. Just like it really did not offend me when the Bush-Hitler comparisons were made. While the comparisons are demonstrably false and distasteful, people have the right to engage in political speech.
For what it is worth, here are some Youtube clips of my favorite Bush-Hitler Comparisons. And by favorite, I mean the most outlandish:
This one attempts to make historical comparisons between Bush and Hitler as it relates to terrorism and defending the "Homeland." It also talks about "Bin Laden" and "Al Queda's" "alleged demolition of the WTC towers:"
Here is Keith Olbermann ranting about President Bush. Seriously, does anyone take this man seriously:
Here is a Bush-Hitler comparison done by a 9/11 Truther. It shares some similarities with the first video, and all I can say to both of them is, "you're nuts."