There are tons of noteworthy Adolf Hitler quotes to choose from—including “Whatchu talkin’ ‘bout, Wilhelm?” and “Say, Eva, is this your cyanide tea or mine?”—but the best advice for properly using and citing Hitler quotes is, “Jesus Christ, don’t! What the hell, man? That’s Hitler! His Q score is lower than Matt Lauer’s!”
That’s good advice for anyone, but it’s especially pertinent if you’re a moms’ group proofreading your shit at Kinko’s and a juicy Hitler quote smacks you square in the face. And if you’re a moms’ group that’s already been flagged by the Southern Poverty Law Center as an extremist organization, as Moms for Liberty has, you may want to goose-step especially lightly.
The Hamilton County, Indiana, branch of Moms for Liberty, the putative extremist group in question, recently hit it out of the park with the latest edition of its newsletter, “The Parent Brigade.” Not only did it feature a Hitler quote, said Hitler quote was on the cover! Like, where you’d normally put a Dr. Oz quote—which, despite everything you’ve seen and heard, is still marginally better than a Hitler quote.
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Just below The Parent Brigade's masthead was a quote Hitler used at a Nazi rally in 1935: "He alone, who OWNS the youth, GAINS the future." The pages of the newsletter were posted on the group's Facebook page.
Late Wednesday night, the front page of the newsletter was updated to include what is described as "context" for the Hitler quote.
"The quote from a horrific leader should put parents on alert," the update says. "If the government has control over our children today, they control our country's future. We The People must be vigilant and protect children from an overreaching government."
Yeah, nice save. Kind of reminds me of this:
The Star contacted the Hitler-quoting Moms for Liberty chapter and received no response. But after appearing to stonewall the newspaper—and after receiving significant blowback over its “mistake”—the group eventually released a less-defensive, transparently CYA statement late Thursday morning saying, “We condemn Adolf Hitler's actions and his dark place in human history. We should not have quoted him in our newsletter and express our deepest apology.”
The newspaper also noted that, just below the Hitler quote on the newsletter’s original front page, a “message from our founders”—Tiffany Justice and Tina Descovich—could be found, bearing the headline “Moms for Liberty will not be be intimidated by hate groups!”
Read that again if you like. It will never make more sense than it does now, no matter how many psychedelic desert toads you bake into your three-bean casserole.
The Star noted that Justice and Descovich’s ironically placed column appeared to be a response to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s decision to designate Moms for Liberty as an extremist group.
In its most recent annual report, the SPLC describes Moms for Liberty this way:
Moms for Liberty activities make it clear that the group’s primary goals are to fuel right-wing hysteria and to make the world a less comfortable or safe place for certain students – primarily those who are Black, LGBTQ or who come from LGBTQ families. A Tennessee chapter of Moms for Liberty, for example, claimed that the state’s second-grade curriculum, which includes a book about Martin Luther King Jr. and another by Ruby Bridges, was “anti-White.” Their focused attack on critical race theory became a substitute for most things pertaining to Black history and culture.
Other chapters have attacked the book Gender Queer, a memoir about adolescence by a non-binary author, and others that explore sexuality and gender identity. The group has shown up alongside Proud Boys at multiple protests, including in Florida and Texas.
So clearly Moms for Liberty’s public and strident refusal to be intimidated by “hate groups” is part of the right’s tried-and-true “I’m rubber and you’re glue” strategy.
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Meanwhile, everyone’s fave faux Democrat, Robert F. Kennedy Jr.—whose campaign message is poised to go viral, along with anyone who listens to it—is scheduled to speak at Moms for Liberty’s national summit in Philadelphia next week. The convening, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported in April, is focused on training attendees to shape their local school boards—and that’s terrifying.
The summit, which aims to draw 650 attendees, will have a focus on school board races, with training offered to candidates.
Moms for Liberty’s local chapters decide endorsements, Descovich said. A questionnaire for candidates seeking endorsement in Bucks County, for instance, asks whether parents should be allowed to exempt children from vaccines based on religious or moral convictions, to opt their children out of sex education, and to have a voice in “curating school libraries.”
It also asks whether candidates support student-led prayer, the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, and “teaching minors that they can change their gender,” and includes such open-ended questions as: “What does liberty mean to you?”
Moms for Liberty is hoping to play a bigger role in school board races nationally by starting to fund candidates, Descovich said. The group says it endorsed 500 candidates last year, with 275 winning election.
But clearly it’s not just about railing against Winnie-the-Pooh’s pantsless lifestyle; Moms for Liberty also wants a say about who’s in the White House. And so RFK Jr., who’s running against President Joe Biden for the 2024 Democratic presidential nomination because not enough people have died of easily preventable diseases yet, will join noted fellow progressive candidates Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis, Nikki Haley, and Vivek Ramaswamy at the event. So, yeah, at the very least the group is willing to entertain all perspectives on the kookaburra continuum.
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And who knows, maybe Trump will muster a lucid moment and come up with something even more Hitler-y than Hitler! Now that’s a horrific leader Moms for Liberty can really get behind!
Check out Aldous J. Pennyfarthing’s four-volume Trump-trashing compendium, including the finale, Goodbye, Asshat: 101 Farewell Letters to Donald Trump, at this link. Or, if you prefer a test drive, you can download the epilogue to Goodbye, Asshat for the low, low price of FREE.