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March 22, 2005
Tragedy At Red Lake

Once again in Minnesota, we're confronted by the spectre of a teenager on a killing spree, this time in the economically challenged community of Red Lake near the Canadian border. Jeffery Weise, a Native American who incongruously bought into the madness of neo-Naziism, killed nine people and wounded several others at his school before turning his weapon on himself.

No doubt this story will get all sorts of play in the national and local media, and I really don't have much to add to the facts already known. The strange connection between Weise and the nihilistic philosophy of National Socialism strikes me as so predictable for an isolated sociopath and so odd for a Native America as to defy belief. However, based on the information reported so far, it appears to be true.

One of the greatest mistakes made in the past twenty years or so has been the dimunition of the evil of Nazis in our political discourse. While the use of the Nazis to score cheap political points has occurred on both fringes of the political spectrum, the hyperbolic comparisons of normal political opposition to the jackbooted, genocidal thugs of last century wind up legitimizing Naziism by proxy. It diminishes the horror that the real Nazis wreaked on civilization and the ethnic minorities unlucky enough to stand in their way. It also allows an entire generation to believe that being a Nazi merely means the opposition of mainstream thought, which increases its appeal to disaffected loners like Weise.

Perhaps people can remember that when they're tempted to compare their political opponents to Himmler, Goebbels, or Hitler. Diminishing the true evil they represent to mere political posturing almost guarantees that they will inspire more and more immature and ignorant loners to pick up their banner.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at March 22, 2005 7:15 PM

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» Native American Nazi from Another Rovian Conspiracy - St Wendeler
I wonder what Ward Churchill thinks about this... would he think that Weise's victims were all little Eichmanns / Technocrats in Training? I think he'd agree with Weise's sentiments about the purity of the Native American race.... and its subjugatio... [Read More]

Tracked on March 22, 2005 8:01 PM

» Could Illinois' Student McGuivers Have Prevented Red Lake? from LifeTrek Oregon, IL 3 teens made some homemade "McGuiver" bombs and set them off around their school - while the school was in session!...but with all of the info now coming out about the kid in Red Lake, MN I thought it was important to get this out ther... [Read More]

Tracked on March 24, 2005 8:08 PM

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