Republican Tries To Link Socialism With Genocide In School Lessons
Wed Oct 12
Is a Nazi a Nazi if you don’t call them one?Despite outcry from historians and educators, Colorado has been working on updates to their social studies standards to link socialism with genocides. Over the past couple of years they’ve …
- Tried to replace instances of Nazi with the abbreviation instead spelled out: the National Socialist German Workers’ Party
- Included more education on genocides committed under socialist and communist regimes while also reducing or removing references to those committed under other types of regimes
Why is this dangerous? These adjustments strongly imply that socialism is what makes genocides possible, and that is simply not true. Experts worry that the exclusive, inaccurate link between socialism and genocide will lead to thinking that democracies are somehow immune to the forces that lead to genocide. Democracies are not immune and in fact have committed genocide.
So then why is Colorado doing this?It has mostly been the effort of Republican Steve Durham, who believes in a link between genocide and socialism. Throwing “socialism” around in attack is also a decades-old tactic to scare voters away from Democrats (since “socialist” has been a dirty word since the Cold War, but less so lately). More recently in 2019, Republicans piled on the accusations when one of their own essentially equated Hitler and the Nazis to Democrats by calling them all socialists. But that’s entirely wrong because:
- Nazis and Hitler were actually fascists, which is the complete opposite of a socialist (even if the full name for Nazis is the National Socialist German Workers’ Party).
- Unlike a socialist government, the Nazis had private firms that submitted the lowest bid build their concentration camps.
- Democrats, even the socialist-leaning ones, are still in favor of capitalism but with expanded social services (akin to the Scandinavian systems).
- Lastly, “the Nazis rose to power as a racist right-wing party virulently opposed to socialism and communism.”
Worryingly, Americans already have little understanding of socialism; roughly 25% of Americans are entirely unable to define socialism. Others are more worried about what these events are saying about the ability of the State Board to referee conflicts. Ultimately, the pushback against Durham’s proposals have resulted in a less problematic update to the standards. But, the legislator who co-sponsored the bill requiring Holocaust education statewide, says it still misses the point of Holocaust education: how hatred and intolerance turns into genocide.
BELOW THE FOLD BYTES
Fried Butter is Unpatriotic!
Dude food, or the fare of Guy Fieri, is familiar to the world as typically American. The nation’s propensity towards gluttony has largely been a joke but capitalism is spreading it further. However, celebration of this type of consumption is somewhat based on a lie. It’s not all-American and it’s not patriotic. In fact, the founding fathers would consider it grotesque and even uncivilized. They had hoped Americans would excel beyond other nations (including the indulgent Brits) in temperance and Washington himself pushed for his armies’ health through boiled meats,soups, and vegetables — whatever the expense! What a departure from the gluttony of today.
But CHIPS Are Patriotic!
Semiconductor kind of chips, that is. The July passing of the bipartisan Chips and Science Act will funnel $53B in subsidies to build or expand semiconductor fabrication plants. This is important work not only to reduce our reliance on non-domestic production and therefore become less sensitive to what happens overseas, but also in boosting innovation. But is this sustainable given the megadrought, climate crisis, and minimal conditions attached to the subsidies? Some are worried about the toxic waste produced in chip manufacturing. The CHIPS Act does include support for climate change research and solutions, however.
🎬 Action of the Week
Learn more about how to identify and prevent genocide with the United Nations, especially in fighting against hate speech which “incites violence and undermines social cohesion and tolerance.”
This Week's Sources
- Chalkbeat: Colorado's New Holocaust Education 2 days old | 12 minutes long
- Politico: Odd Debate Over Nazis & Socialism 3 years old | 3 minutes long
- Gallup: Americans’ Many Definitions of Socialism 4 years old | 6 minutes long
- NPR: Republicans Scare With Socialism 2 years old | 3 minutes long
ASCII-ing About the News
,—-~~~--~. | | ~- CHIP -~ | *** | ~- === -~ | | ~- -~ `--------’ btf New startup idea: Ruffled chips!
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