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ADL Says Use Of Nazi Imagery In Health Care Debate 'Outrageous And Inappropriate'

New York, NY, August 7, 2009 The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today called attempts by some opponents of health care reform to bring Nazi imagery into the debate, "outrageous, deeply offensive and inappropriate" and condemned remarks by talk-show host Rush Limbaugh, who compared President Obama's health care logo to a swastika, and policies championed by the Democratic Party to those of the Nazis.


"Regardless of the political differences and the substantive differences in the debate over health care, the use of Nazi symbolism is outrageous, offensive and inappropriate," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor.  "Americans should be able to disagree on the issues without coloring it with Nazi imagery and comparisons to Hitler.  This is not where the debate should be at all."


In recent days, street protests against President Obama's health care plan have gotten ugly, with some protestors appearing in photographs wearing swastika and SS symbols.


That prompted Rush Limbaugh to remark on his radio program that, "They accuse us of being Nazis, and Obama's got a healthcare logo that's right out of Adolf Hitler's playbook."  He went on to compare certain Democratic Party policies to those of the Nazis.


"Comparisons to the Nazis are deeply offensive and only serve to diminish and trivialize the extent of the Nazi regime's crimes against humanity and the murder of six million Jews and millions of others in the Holocaust," said Mr. Foxman.  "I don't see any comparison here.  It's off-center, off-issue and completely inappropriate."

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.

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2009 Anti-Defamation League