Scott on October 3, 2007 at 2:13 pm
Hyperbole is a useful tool of rhetoric when used correctly, but when used incorrectly it’s like placing a phaser set on maximum into the hands of a six year old…resulting in lots of reckless mayhem with very little strategy and even less accuracy.
Which brings me to today’s lesson in absurdity from the Huffington Post, penned by Joan Z Shore titled “Germany-and the American Zeitgeist.” Though I can’t say this for certain, I am pretty sure that Ms. Shore had a soundtrack playing in her head as she wrote this post, a soundtrack that sounded something like the Darth Vader music from Star Wars (“dum-dum-dum–dumdadum-dumdadum”)…ominous and foreboding, hinting at an insidious malignancy out to control the universe.
Ms. Shore spends most of her time in the front part of her post talking about Germany and her impressions of how it has changed over the years between the Cold War era and now. And then her tone becomes darker as her commentary morphs from one of observation to one of geopolitical fear mongering. After positing the highly-intelligent-and-never-before-asked question of how something so heinous as the rise of the Third Reich could have happened in the first place, she then waxes frighteningly philosophical as she says:
I think the Holocaust Memorial — that stunning, numbing field of 2,700 slabs of dark concrete — may explain the process. It begins with small, low slabs that you can easily climb on or jump over. Gradually, the slabs increase in size, gathering mass and momentum, tilting on the uneven terrain, until you find yourself trapped in a grid of high, insurmountable megaliths. And that is exactly how evil often begins — casually, insignificantly. You pay little attention to it, or accept the stealthy progression until it grows to overpower you. Then there is no escape.
This is what happened in Germany from 1933 onwards, as seemingly simple rules aimed at the Jewish population were expanded step by step into discriminatory laws, and then unmitigated persecution, and finally segregation and deportation and death.
Could it happen in other “civilized” countries? I’m afraid so. Like the frog that is dropped in a pot of cold water and is gradually boiled to death, we adjust all too easily to furtive escalation, we excuse all too quickly the underhand maneuver. In America, we are allowing our civil rights to be chipped away, we have fallen for blatant government lies, and we continue to listen to the drivel of our media. It would not take much to find a target now for our anger and frustration: The immigrants, the gays, the people on welfare, the liberals, the Jews.
Wow! Immigrants. Gays. People on welfare. Liberals. Jews.
Notice the not-so-subtle change in focus and tone to ethical and moral judgment. “That is how evil begins” is linked to “simple rules aimed at the Jewish population” to “In America, we are allowing our civil rights to be chipped away, we have fallen for blatant government lies…It would not take much to find a target now for our anger and frustration: The immigrants, the gays, the people on welfare, the liberals, the Jews.” So, the steps in her logic (and I use the term “logic” losely) are: evil begins subtly with laws aimed at Jews – which morphs into – full-blown discrimination and the Final Solution – and finally ends with – the lies of the American government as they target immigrants, gays, liberals and Jews.
As Robin would say, “Holy load of crap, Batman!”
Call me crazy, but though she is careful not to mention them specifically, somehow I get the feeling that Republicans/conservatives are the cause of this “evil” that she claims is chipping away at civil rights in our country. Who else tells lies? Certainly not liberals and democrats! Who else would target immigrants, gays, welfare recipients, liberals and Jews? Certainly not democrats and liberals!
Come on! Let’s be honest! We all know that Republicans and conservatives are responsible for all the hatred in our country. If it wasn’t for them, government would be run ethically and efficiently. Immigration wouldn’t be an issue because we would all be working together for the good of society (and thus citizenship, tax status, criminal history, etc wouldn’t be an issue). Gays would be free and uninhibited to be who they want to be without fear of persecution from hateful, socially conservative Christian thugs. Welfare recipients would be proud to be raising large families while not working (thus being able to better develop their intellects while focusing on social awareness and service to the community). Liberals would be in control, so everyone’s ideas would be welcomed and embrassed (as long as they weren’t conservative and/or too Christianesque).
I especially appreciate that at the end of her little thing she threw in the Jews as if they are the canary in the coal mine. And for good reason. I’m sure the Jews are threatened on a regular basis in this country. They must be, because if they weren’t Ms. Shore wouldn’t imply as much. I’m sure that hate crimes against Jews must be on the increase, again because if that weren’t the case then Ms. Shore wouldn’t include them in her list. I’m sure that even now there is a second holocaust going on in the United States with small groups of Jews hiding in basements and attics from Maine to California.
To be honest, even as I write I have a Jewish family of four hiding in my downstairs linen closet at home. It’s a little crowded in there, but I’m sure they are grateful for the protection. I even gave the girl a journal so she could record her thoughts about living through the Second Jewish Holocaust. I can’t promise that I won’t turn them in if the jackbooted, neo-conservative, Christianesque storm troopers come to my door, but at least they are safe for now.
I already have a publisher lined up to publish the girl’s journals after the dust settles. I’m sure she won’t mind. She’ll be dead by then.
Category: Politics |