Having worked in Washington, DC., since 2001, I’ve seen some really stupid things. Not just things done by me and my friends, but by those in power, those in so-called “respectable” positions. Nothing I’ve seen (or done) comes close to what we’ve all witnessed since the election of Donald Trump.
There were always people, usually on the left, who casually tossed around Hitler analogies, but they were quickly shutdown or dismissed as kooks. Godwin’s Law, which is “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one,” held most people in check. Comparisons to one of history’s greatest monsters were not something people threw around lightly. More importantly, people recognized that once they did it, they’d lost the argument.
With Trump’s unexpected victory in the 2016 election, comparing people to Hitler not only started to become the default go-to in disagreements, there also seemed to be a competition among the media to see who could do it in the dumbest way possible.
Following the president’s inauguration address, Chris Matthews said, “…I'm thinking, when [President Trump] said today, America first, it was not just the racial, I mean I shouldn't say racial, the Hitlerian background to it, but it was the message I kept thinking. What does [U.K. Prime Minister] Theresa May think of this when she picks up the papers? What did he just say? He said America first. What happened to special relationship?”
The fact that the president of the United States might be interested in the interests of the American people seemed foreign to Chris, who didn’t receive any pushback on his stupidity. And with that Godwin’s Law became Godwin’s Rule of Thumb: when you can’t refute what your opponent says, call them Hitler.
Off to the races, the Hitler comparisons flourish to this day. Trump has not done anything remotely close to warranting such comparisons, but the bar has been successfully lowered to the point that it’s now lost all meaning. Like the cries of racism from the left, they’ve played it out to the point that real people ignore it.
This sent the political left, that has fetishized victimhood, in search of new ways to try to scare the hell out of people and end any dissent. They tried the broader “You’re a Nazi,” “concentration camps on the border,” “white supremacist,” etc. They’ve even gone so far as to declare common words like “infested” and “invasion” as some sort of secret racist code. When you’re not bound by reality, a desperate mind will go anywhere.
This victim fetish leads us to Chris Cuomo and the confrontation heard ‘round the world.
I am opposed to confronting political opponents in public, especially when they’re out with their family at non-news or political events. That said, the left has been embracing this for some time, so maybe it’s about time they get a dose of their own medicine.
In 2011, liberals went after Glenn Beck in New York City while he was just trying to watch a movie with his family in Bryant Park. Since then there have been dozens of conservatives “confronted” in movie theaters, restaurants, and even at their homes. Most of these events have not solicited pushback or criticism from media liberals, while many have cheered.
Left-wing clowns have called for “pitchforks and torches” outside a Trump fundraiser. MSNBC personality Chris Hayes referred to people screaming at Mitch McConnell’s house in the night, wishing he’d “broken his neck” and that he’d be “stabbed in the heart,” as “There have been peaceful protests outside Mitch McConnell's house.” It’s rather odd that the people who condemn words as violence think calling for someone to be stabbed is cool, but we’re not dealing with honest people here. Which brings us back to Cuomo.
I don’t believe the guy who approached him really thought his name was Fredo, I believe he was being a jerk. And I can understand Cuomo telling the guy off – he’s out with his family, that would irritate anyone. Threatening to toss the guy down the stairs, well, that crossed the line. But that wasn’t the most absurd part.
When Cuomo equated “Fredo” with the N-word, that was the new bottom in the left’s quest for victim status. Fredo isn’t the N-word for Italians, it’s the old M-word for everyone: moron. When you’ve publicly stated “hate speech is excluded from protection” by the First Amendment (among scores of other ridiculous things), and you’ve gone to law school, you earn the Fredo label.
Cuomo isn’t the victim, he’s the perp. He’s made his prime-time bones at CNN like everyone else there, either attacking conservatives or sitting silently as they were smeared on his show. If being called Fredo is such an insult to “his people,” as he put it, maybe he should stop acting like a Fredo. If he can, that is.
Every time you think the left has hit bottom, that they couldn’t sink any lower in the crazy-hole, someone breaks out a shovel. Today it’s Fredo, tomorrow who knows? As someone who is part WOP, part Mick, a dash of Frog, and a whole bunch of other things, I can only imagine it’ll be even dumber. But that could just be the Polack in me.