Anti-Vaxers in Kansas compare selves to holocaust victims


Former Kansas City Mayor candidate Daran Duffy and his wife and daughter wearing stars of David at a hearing on Friday, Nov 12, 2021. Photo courtesy of Reuters.

   On November 12, 2021, Daran Duffy and his family wore yellow stars of David, resembling the stars Holocaust victims were forced to wear as an identification mechanism, at a hearing regarding government overreach related to mask mandates and vaccinations in Kansas City, Kansas. Duffy stated that he did not believe wearing the star was antisemitic. He claimed America was on track for another calamity such as the Holocaust. “Every single thing that Hitler did he did in accordance with the laws of his country,” said Duffy.

   This came after Republican lawmakers for the state, as well as anti-vax protestors, made multiple statements comparing mask mandates to the Holocaust. “This is racism against the modern day Jew,” said Representative Brenda Landwehr of Wichita, “which is anyone who disagrees” she concluded. During the hearing, which lasted six and a half hours, none of the 10 other board members reprehended this statement, including the Senate President, Ty Masterson. Only in the resulting outrage on social media did Masterson make a statement. “Senate Republicans reject, in the strongest possible terms, any analogies to the Holocaust,” Masterson wrote on Twitter. “Such comparisons are inappropriate and bear no resemblance to the issues we are debating today,” he stated to his Twitter following.

   Many Republicans stayed silent on the issue, while some decided to speak out. “It’s disappointing that analogies to the Holocaust are being perpetuated,” Kansas Republican Representative Ron Ryckman wrote on Twitter. “Let me be clear: the issues being debated today are important to Kansas, but they are in no way comparable to what millions of Jews endured who were ripped from their families, & marked for death by the Nazis,” Ryckmanconcluded. Others had stronger things to say. “I condemn these profoundly offensive statements that are an insult to those who died in the Holocaust. Antisemitism has no place in Kansas,” Democratic Representative Laura Kelly wrote on Twitter. “Reason 1,385,858,848,938 we need to fund education on Holocaust history way more,”  David Hogg said on Twitter. “This is disgusting and needs to be denounced immediately. Anti-semitism is growing in this country and more people need to be denouncing it,” Hogg added.