A year ago, denouncing neo-Nazis would’ve been a no brainer for Republicans. What’s changed?
Primarily, the fact that the term “Nazi” got devalued after the Trump election. The definition went from “political ideology that uses nationalism and racism to justify authoritarianism” to “anyone who votes (R)”, forgetting that 98% of the people who vote (R) detest Nazism as much as anyone else.
So, the GOP sticks to the textbook definition of the term, and refuses to use the watered down version advanced by the left. To the left, that’s interpreted as “you’re not denouncing Nazis” because they insist that the new definition is the only one that should be acceptable.
Words matter. Nazism is a political philosophy that, like Communism, advances an authoritarian and coercive social state where everyone has to be politically correct (yes, that term began with the USSR, let’s not forget) or……else (gunshot sounds). And although there are *pieces* of the Trump/Bannon/Gorka rhetoric that contain that sort of racial/xenophobic language, the aforementioned clearly do not meet the textbook definition of the ideology, as their political philosophy also includes a more libertarian approach to economic matters, which is something that the Nazis would have called out the firing squad to address.
Now, none of the above should be interpreted as personal support for Nazis, Trump, Bannon, Gorka, or white supremacy. We’re in a bad place right now, because we have two violent authoritarian ideologies butting head to head (the actual Nazis, the white supremacists, and the communist/anarchist leaning Antifa) and who are stealing all the news cycles, and of course the media loves all this, because it can pretend that there are 150 million Americans on THIS side who are fighting against 150 million Americans on THAT side, when in fact neither one of these two “factions”, as defined by individual ACTION, represents more than a rounding error of our population.
The solution is to support neither one, and it would also help if we’d all clean up our use of the English language. White supremacy is different than white nationalism which is different than the alt-right and sure as hell is different from conservativeism, which itself is different from Republicanism.
Hope that helps.