Is racism the ultimate evil?
From the way Leftists talk, one would certainly get the impression that racism is the ultimate evil. In the 2008 Presidential campaign, an amazing number of utterances by Obama foes were twisted out of all recognition in an attempt to portray them as racist.
I would argue that things like dishonesty, lack of reality contact and emotionalism are far more detrimental to overall human welfare but, judging by their own most usual method of argument, Leftists are quite comfortable with such phenomena.
Leftists normally justify their paranoia about racism by referring to Hitler. They say that Hitler's treatment of the Jews shows just how evil racism is. But Jews are not a race! It is only your religious heritage that makes you a Jew. Judging by the number of blue-eyed Jews around, Jews are in fact quite mixed racially.
So Hitler's deeds cannot be put down to racism. They could however be seen as an example of religious bigotry and are thus yet another example of how destructive religious bigotry can be. And who are the main religious bigots today? Muslims and Leftists. The furious hatred that Leftists pour out on Christianity is quite virulent religious bigotry. So, as in other ways, it is Leftists, not racists who are Hitler's real heirs.
Even the well-known claim by Hitler that Germans are a Herrenvolk can only be portrayed as racist by mistranslation. It is commonly translated as "master race" but that is not what it means at all. The German word for race is Rasse and if Hitler had meant "Master race", he would have said Herrenrasse. But he didn't. Volk means "people" and is related to the English word "folk". So Hitler was quite clearly referring to a "Master people", not a master race.
And note that in the old Communist East Germany, they used Volk a lot. East German products used all to bear the brand "VEB", which stands for Volkseigenebetrieb, or "people's own enterprise". So were the Communist East Germans racist? Were they portraying their products as coming from the East German race? I think the answer is obvious to anybody but a Leftist intellectual.
Ultimately, the Jews were simply convenient to Hitler -- a group on whom all problems could traditionally be blamed: A scapegoat. His treatment of them was politically useful, not an outcome of racism. He treated many groups harshly, including clearly religious groups. One instance of that was Jehovah's Witnesses, then known in Germany as Ernste Bibelforscher. Because they refused to be conscripted into Germany's armed forces, they too went to the concentration camps.
I have said more about these matters on DISSECTING LEFTISM recently.
Trying to be accurate has its perils. I gather that some have seen what I said above as a defence of Hitler. Nothing I said above does that. I said that Hitler used the Jews as a scapegoat, which is far and away the most common summary of his actions. By noting that his savagery extended to all sorts of groups, I think I have in fact shown that he was worse than a racist. The entire nation of Britain was racist in the 19th century. They thought that to be born British was to be born superior. Yet they did nothing remotely resembling what Hitler did. They in fact made a Jew their Prime Minister.
Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your daily roundup of pro-environment but anti-Greenie news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH . Email me (John Ray) here