October 27, 2014

Story in Stupidity: Texas state senator goes full Godwin in inaugural speech

Once upon a time, there was a man named Charles Perry.

Perry had big dreams. He wanted to be a state senator for the great nation of GodBlessTexas™. He worked hard (HarderThanYouAtLeast™) and achieved his goal. He became a state senator.

Like most senators (and other elected officials), Perry had an inauguration.

And like I'd assume many other senators, Mr. Perry had obviously never heard of Godwin's Law. Thus, his inauguration went something like this:

After placing his hand on the Bible and taking the oath of office, state Sen. Charles Perry compared what he called the “spiritual battle” brewing across the nation to the Holocaust. 
God has a place in the government, Perry explained in his inaugural speech as he vividly recalled a recent trip to a former concentration camp in Berlin. 
“There were 10,000 people that were paraded into a medical office under the guise of a physical. As they stood with their back against the wall, they were executed with a bullet through the throat. Before they left, 10,000 people met their fate that way,” Perry said. 
“Is it not the same than when our government continues to perpetuate laws that lead citizens away from God? The only difference is that the fraud of the Germans was more immediate and whereas the fraud of today’s government will not be exposed until the final days and will have eternal-lasting effects.” 
While serving in the Senate, Perry said, he will address the financial needs of the state by prioritizing state funding and balancing the budget without raising taxes. Though he anticipates political debate in the process, that isn’t what Perry said most concerns him.
His biggest challenge will be the “spiritual battle for the spirit of this nation and the soul of its people,” he said. 
When he gets to the capital, abortion and same-sex marriage will be at the forefront of discussion, Perry said. 
“Roe v. Wade condemned 55 million innocent and defenseless souls that cried out for righteousness from a God who is just — we will answer for that as a nation,” Perry said, later noting he has made clear his stance on gay marriage.

Of course, Godwin's law is the notion that the longer a discussion continues, the more likely it becomes that someone will bring up the Nazis or Hitler. And Perry didn't even allow the discussion to progress for too terribly long, if you think about it.

And of course, these comparisons in no way undercut the severity of the Holocaust, I'm sure. He's in no way making light of the murder of millions of people--people who had lives and families and fully formed bodies, thoughts, dreams, hopes...

Not at all. Not in the slightest.

It's also impressive how he says he will prioritize economic issues, and then also says his main challenge will be a spiritual battle for the soul of our nation. Which one will take priority? Hmmmmm...

Here's a good rule of thumb, and I'd like for us all to just...just agree to this. Don't compare the Holocaust to things that aren't the Holocaust. Unless millions of people are being slaughtered, there is literally no comparison to be made.

Let's expand that. Let's not compare ANY genocidal rampage to anything  else. Not Rawanda or Darfur or Bosnia or any other genocide. Not the killing of indigenous peoples around the world by colonial expansion. None of these events have any comparison, except themselves. Linking them to other causes--to abortion or LGBT+ rights, or ANYTHING--trivializes the severity of these events in our collective global history.

So the moral of this Story in Stupidity is: Holocaust comparisons. Just don't do them.

The end.

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