Glenn Beck, a right-wing talk radio host and owner of media outlet TheBlaze, thinks that he, of all people on this good Earth, is qualified to lecture anyone about when it is appropriate to invoke rhetoric that many people have associated with the Holocaust.
Conservative media has been churning outrage in response to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez saying that the United States government is “running concentration camps on our Southern border,” where it places asylum-seeking immigrants into detention facilities. Reports about the facilities migrants are placed in have described poor living conditions, children in cages, detainees contracting serious illnesses in circumstances that for some have resulted in death. For that practice, Ocasio-Cortez described President Trump’s administration as “authoritarian and fascist.”
“I don’t use those words lightly. I don’t use those words to just throw bombs. I use that word because that is what an administration that creates concentration camps is,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a video streamed on Instagram. “A presidency that creates concentration camps is fascist, and it’s very difficult to say that.”
In a video posted to TheBlaze’s Twitter account today, Beck said that Ocasio-Cortez just “doesn’t realize how stupid she is” for using the term “concentration camps” to describe what is currently happening on the U.S.-Mexico border.
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) June 19, 2019
“She said Donald Trump has built concentration camps. Boy, I’m trying not to be demeaning here and talk down to her. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, do some homework. Do your own homework, here,” Beck said. “That’s wildly insulting. It’s insulting to Jews. It’s insulting to anyone who had anyone in a concentration camp or knows what a concentration camp is.”
Beck later added, directed to Ocasio-Cortez, “You are either a moron and there’s nothing that can be done, or something is seriously wrong with you and your priorities.”
Perhaps Ocasio-Cortez could take lessons from Beck in what warrants a comparison to the atrocities carried out in Nazi Germany. After all, he’s the expert.
As comedian Lewis Black pointed out as far back as 2010, Beck has a storied past displaying Nazi imagery and comparing Democrats, climate change, Supreme Court nominations, art programs, the Peace Corps, and a laundry list of other things to the genocidal regime. During Barack Obama’s presidency, Beck repeatedly compared the then-president to Adolf Hitler and America under his leadership to Nazi Germany.
In 2011, The Daily Telegraph reported that Beck compared young victims of a mass shooting at a Norwegian summer camp to the Hitler Youth organization. Daily Telegraph reports that Beck said on air, “There was a shooting at a political camp, which sounds a little like, you know, the Hitler Youth. I mean, who does a camp for kids that’s all about politics? Disturbing.” The same year, Beck likened the mobile phone video game “Angry Birds” to Nazi Germany.
Two years later, Beck faced criticism from the Anti-Defamation League after displaying a graphic depicting New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg giving a Nazi salute at a National Rifle Association convention. He’d go on that year to declare, in reference to the plight of Coptic Christians in Egypt, that Nazis had arrived.
In 2014, Beck told Megyn Kelly that he regretted his divisive language and believed he “played a role, unfortunately, in helping tear the country apart.” Mere months later, he compared to Nazi propaganda a children’s storybook that encouraged children to “try foods from each food group by eating just two bites.” The next year, Right Wing Watch reported that Beck warned that gay rights activists had become modern-day Nazis who were leading an Inquisition that would turn into a Christian holocaust.
Just last month, Beck compared pro-choice arguments for protecting access to abortion to two Nazi propaganda pamphlets. The month before, Beck told his listeners that the United States was trotting down a path reminiscent of Nazi Germany and that the “seeds” indicating that shift were “everywhere.”
We could go on, but there are simply too many outlandish examples to include. Beck has a Nazi fetish, and he’s creating more citable examples as he goes.