Richard Land apologizes for Nazi reference


EthicsDaily.com carries the story today of Richard Land’s apology to the Jewish Anti-Defamation League for using Nazi references to characterize the health-care reform debate.

According to EthicsDaily.com today, “During a Sept. 26 gathering of the Christian Coalition of Florida, Land criticized Democratic health-care reform efforts by claiming that the Democrats were attempting to do ‘precisely what the Nazis did.’  He also compared Dr. Ezekiel Emmanuel, who is a health-care advisor to Obama, to German SS officer Josef Mengele.  Mengele was a doctor who was called the ‘Angel of Death’ because of his human experimentations during the Holocaust.”

Richard Land has served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission since 1988.

I wrote about this misuse of Nazi references on this blog two days ago.  It’s refreshing to see someone who has used such a reference apologize for the inappropriate reference to the horrific Holocaust experience. Nothing in modern human history is comparable to the state-designed, supported, and implemented genocide of Jews and other groups, including Gypsies and homosexuals, by the Nazi regime.

As the Anti-Defamation League statement suggests,  “Such comparisons diminish the history and the memory of the 6 million Jews and 5 million others who died at the hands of the Nazis and insults those who fought bravely against Hitler.”

Perhaps others will learn from Land’s experience and think twice before invoking images of the Holocaust to describe petty partisan squabbles.


4 thoughts on “Richard Land apologizes for Nazi reference”

  1. If I read this correctly, though, he’s only apologizing to the ADL. That’s something … but while he did commit a wrong against the Jewish community, there is also the little matter of the people he equated to Nazis.

  2. I have followed Dr. Land’s career for many years. He is a compassionate Christian man and cares for all people. I may not agree with his hyperbole, but I strongly defend hs views on the President’s Health Care Plan. Let’s not be confused, this atack on Dr. Land has much more to do with blurring our focus on the Health Care debate than on educating us on the attrocities commited by the Nazi’s.

  3. No one is questioning Land’s career or his convictions, just his very poor choice of metaphors. If you have read anything about Nazi atrocities and the Holocaust, you must realize that the Holocaust created a new category for evil. To suggest that the actions of the President or his advisors is similar to the Nazi plan, or that Dr. Emmanuel is a Josef Mengele is neither just hyperbole, nor is it, by any means, a Christian expression of disagreement. Land has apologized, so I assume he does indeed regret his statement.

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