Thursday, July 2, 2015

Thing We Don't Like = Nazis, Always

There might be a good argument against TV Land pulling re-runs of "Dukes of Hazzard." This is not one of them.

For those who are at risk of suffering from seizures at the mere sound of a sad, dumb person's voice, Ben Jones (who played Cooter on the show, and also once played a politician from Georgia), claims that Viacom removing re-runs (you know, the episodes of a show you've already seen dozens and dozens of times) is just like the Nazis burning books.

Jones correctly states that Viacom made this decision as a result of public pressure. He also correctly points out that people of all races enjoyed the show. And I'm sure plenty of black people enjoyed "Song of the South" at one point.

A lot of Confederate flag defenders have used the argument that the battle flag is perfectly acceptable because there were blacks who fought for the South. Yes, there were blacks who worked in the South as well. How can one possibly grapple with the criticism of "dude, you're completely ignoring slavery," better than by continuing to completely ignore it?

Maybe I'm off base. But where Jones gets off base is exactly where Fox News and Steve Doocy want him to go. They're acting like Viacom pulling re-runs of a show is the end of the world. There is no basis for this, apart from the fact that it might very well be what's left of Cooter's world. Jones very bleakly states "We live in re-runs!" Doocy, to his credit, replies "we're on live TV." So how can we make this seem more significant? A baseless Nazi comparison, of course.

No, other Ben, Viacom pulling re-runs is not like the Nazis burning books. The Nazis were practicing censorship. Their government didn't want people gaining new perspectives and ideas. If anything, Viacom, has realized that promoting old ideas and perspectives might be detrimental to their business. You love business, right? You love it so much, you think it should control the government, I'm guessing. So maybe there is more of an argument to be made that a corporation like Viacom has too much power in our federal government, and too much control over discussions of important issues.

But that's a tough nut to crack, isn't it, Cooter?

Overall, this is part of a more casual trend among conservatives, which is to compare anything they don't like to Naziism. It's ironic, because the Nazis were so far-right that many of today's Republicans would be right at home in a modern Nazi party. It's frustrating how apparently immune some folks must be to irony.

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