Former governor and never-president Mike Huckabee’s recent discourse on Iran, the president, and “march[ing Israelis] to the door of the oven” led Ed Kilgore to consider how much Pastor Mike like’s his Holocaust analogies.
. . . . Fact is, Mike Huckabee has a remarkably intimate relationship with the Holocaust as he sees it, and has been prone to violating the unwritten rule against Holocaust analogies for years. For one thing, he is one of many anti-choice politicians and activists who cannot resist the temptation of analogizing legalized abortion to the Holocaust. There was the incident from back in 2007, during a speech at a pro-life event, when he referred to the deaths of 45 to 50 million unborn babies from abortion as a holocaust—and then connected those deaths to the country’s worker shortage.
Comparing the number of fetuses killed in the US since 1973 to the Holocaust is not uncommon among pro-lifers although the usual reference is to “a holocaust” than “the Holocaust”. Kilgore notes that Huckabee, however, has no problems equating abortion to Auschwitz, as he did in 2014:
If you felt something incredibly powerful at Auschwitz and Birkenau over the 11 million killed worldwide and the 1.5 million killed on those grounds, cannot we feel something extraordinary about 55 million murdered in our own country in the wombs of their mothers?
One of the problems with this analogy (in addition to all of the other problems) is the logical extension of this kind of thinking: women who have abortions are Nazis.
Oh, I know, Huckabee and the rest want us to think of Planned Parenthood and all of the rest of the “abortionists” as Nazis, and maybe to throw some shame on the rest of us as Good Germans, but if you think, as Huckabee apparently did in 2013, that a woman’s uterus “has become one of the most dangerous places for a baby to be”, then how can you avoid the conclusion that it is the women who endanger those babies?
It is the women, after all, who drive to the clinic, who walk into the office, who ask a doctor to perform an abortion, and who climb on to the table so that it may be done.
They are the one’s ordering the destruction of their children; the doctors are the ones simply following those orders.
Of course, that’s far too harsh a rhetoric to float in prime time; at most, perhaps, the women could be compared to sonderkommandos: victims themselves, if not wholly innocent.
That is the bind of the pro-life argument-by-Holocaust analogy: what to do with the women.
Which is not so far from the bind of the pro-life argument in general.
h/t Sarah Posner