The Arkansas Democratic Party is demanding an apology from Republican Rep. Nate Bell, a Mena chicken farmer, for his strange Facebook post that seemed to compare Democrats and fellow travelers with Nazis.
We linked his Facebook comment here yesterday. As a little research showed, the quote apparently wasn’t something the Nazi dictator ever said. On his Facebook page later, Bell explained that he was comparing liberals with Nazis for legislation to which he objected — such as requiring thorough cooking of hamburger. Really.
The Democratic Party’s statement follows. I don’t think they’re likely to get much comfort from Bell. A fellow who can draw comparisons between regulation of cell phone use in school zones and the Holocaust is not a fellow prone to much rational thought. I asked him for an explanation yesterday and he chose not to respond. I tried again today. Still mute. Wuss.
I’ve asked House Minority Leader John Burris if he’d repudiate this point of view, if not directly call for an apology from a Republican colleague. Silence from him, too. When they came for me …..
UPDATE: Burris sends a statement from Nate Bell (man up, Nate, I don’t bite)
The purpose of the quote and the accompanying thread was to serve as a warning against what elected officials should avoid becoming. I do not believe that Democrats are Nazis. Nazis were killers responsible for the death of members of my extended family in the past. I continue to remain focused on representing the people of my district and helping Arkansas overcome the high unemployment and economic troubles we currently have.
— Nate Bell
A non-apology apology, to be sure, but better than nothing. He could have added something about how people sometimes exaggerate when they get worked up in regrettable ways, like comparing those who propose cell phone restrictions and careful hamburger cooking to those who used gas chambers for mass killing.