ADL Praises ESPN for Pulling Football Song in Response to Hank Williams Jr.'s Nazi Comparison
Update: Williams subsequently apologized for his remark. ESPN issued a statement saying that in light of his remark, it would no longer use the Williams song to open "Monday Night Football."
New York, NY, October 4, 2011 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today praised ESPN for its decision to pull the Hank Williams Jr. musical opener to "Monday Night Football" in response to an interview where Williams compared President Obama to the former Nazi dictator, Adolf Hitler.
In an interview on the Fox News Channel, Williams said that President Obama's playing golf with House Speaker John Boehner was like "Hitler playing golf with Netanyahu." When asked to clarify his remark, Williams defended the comparison.
"ESPN responded appropriately and did the right thing in pulling the Hank Williams Jr. football song from the airwaves," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor. "The Holocaust was a singular event in human history, and it is an insult to the memory of the millions who died as a result of Hitler's plan of mass extermination to compare the Nazi dictator to any American president."
In response to Hank Williams' remarks, Mr. Foxman added, "Hank Williams Jr. should know better. He owes an apology to Holocaust survivors, their families, and the brave American soldiers who gave of themselves to fight the Nazi menace during World War II. The last thing we need is to enter another election cycle on a sour note tainted with inappropriate, tired and over-the-top analogies to the Nazis."
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The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.