Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Calls on Nazis in anti-vaccination speech

At a rally against vaccine missions in Washington, DC, on Sunday, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. likened vaccine policies in the US to the actions of an authoritarian state, even suggesting Anne Frank was in a better situation when she was hiding from the Nazis. .

Kennedy, a prominent anti-vaccination campaigner, said in a speech at the Lincoln Memorial: “Even in Germany Hitler[sic]you can, you can cross the Alps to Switzerland. You can hide in an attic, like Anne Frank did.” . “I visited East Germany in 1962 with my father and met people who climbed the wall to escape, so it’s possible. Many dead, true, but possible.”

Kennedy’s historically inaccurate anti-Semitic remarks ignore the fact that Frank and about six million other Jews were murdered by the Nazis. Frank, then a teenager, hid in a loft in the Netherlands, not Germany, before she was arrested and sent to a concentration camp, where she died.

Auschwitz Monument answered to Kennedy in a statement on Twitter, saying, “Exploit the tragedy of those who suffered, humiliated, tortured and murdered by the totalitarian Nazi regime – including children like Anne Frank – in a debate about vaccines and limitations during a global pandemic is a sad symptom of moral and intellectual decay.”

The son of former Attorney General and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy has a long history of spreading misinformation about vaccines.

Although there is no national vaccine requirement for all Americans, various cities around the country, including Washington, have required proof of vaccination in order to enter many homes. restaurants, bars, gyms and other private businesses. The federal government mandates vaccination for federal workers, but a federal judge in Texas blocked the administration from enforcing it on Friday. The administration’s attempt to delegate vaccines to big businesses was blocked by the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this month, although it effectively authorized the authorization of vaccines for some healthcare workers. force nationwide. Some businesses have voluntarily commissioned vaccines.

Sunday’s event, billed as a protest against vaccine mandates, featured speakers who repeatedly spread misinformation about vaccines and introduced some well-known comparisons to the Holocaust. . At least one man was seen displaying a yellow Star of David, which Jews were required to wear as an identification code in Nazi Germany.

While language referring to totalitarianism is common in speeches, references to the Holocaust are mostly found on signs, one of which reads “Make the Nuremberg Code great Great comeback!” and another reading, “Bringing Back the Nuremberg Trials.” The Nuremberg Code described “permitted medical experiments” on human subjects and stated that such experiments should be in the interest of society and satisfy ethical, ethical, and legal concepts. the law. The code was established during the prosecution of German doctors who subjected Jews to torture medical experiments.

Another sign with apparent anti-Semitic sentiment reads, “Corruption, NIH, Big Pharma Mafia, Big CDC Cartel; Big Media Fraud: Your Circumcision is Divided America! All you all have blood-stained money in the hands of your thugs!!”

Other attendees wore costumes and held signs cheering on former President Donald Trump or attacking President Joe Biden. Many also wore shirts that read “Defeat the Commission,” the name of the event. Organizers have secured National Park Service permits for up to 20,000 event participants. The protesters began at the Washington Monument and marched to the Lincoln Memorial, where the speakers addressed the crowd.

CNN’s Joe Johns spoke to three women – Kim Cogswell, Christina Patterson and Erin Nichols – who had traveled from Pennsylvania and Maryland to Washington because two of them said it was the country’s first large-scale protest. surname. They say the lack of freedom is their biggest frustration with the vaccine mandate, although no one dares to say confidently that they think vaccines are safe.

Cogswell said she’s a healthcare worker, “so that got me out of here due to the problems I’ve had with my job and my current immunization status.” When asked what the problems were, Cogswell said, “A lot of the problems were with human resources and the doctors who treated me differently and discriminated against me because of my choices.”

Patterson said she works in the school system but says she hasn’t faced personal backlash at work for not being vaccinated.

The three vaccines currently available in the United States are all safe and effective in preventing serious illness and death from COVID-19. They have been studied in large clinical trials involving thousands of people, and more than 210 million people in the United States have been fully immunized since the vaccine was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. emergency use.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks, and the agency continues to monitor for potential safety issues. The CDC says some people experience mild, short-lived side effects such as headache, muscle pain, and swelling at the injection site after vaccination, but serious complications are rare.

In November, the CDC reported that unvaccinated adults were 13 times more likely to test positive for COVID-19 and 68 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than adults. be fully vaccinated and boosted.

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