Taylor Greene: This Food City vaccination logo reminds me of Nazi yellow stars for some reason; UPDATE: "Appalling," says McCarthy

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Which it would — if you are either completely ignorant of history or outright insane. Today’s social media storm began with a story out of Knoxville a week ago, where a local grocery store decided to make their more anxious customers a little more comfortable with in-person shopping experiences. As masks come off, those concerned about exposure can find assistance from vaccinated employees by looking at their badges:

Beginning Thursday, May 20, vaccinated store associates and customers will not be required to wear a face mask inside the grocery store.

Employees who have been fully vaccinated will have a vaccination logo displayed on their name badge.

Food City advised customers who have not been fully vaccinated or those who prefer to do so as a safety precaution to continue wearing face coverings.

Presumably this is a voluntary disclosure. HIPAA laws forbid employers from making medical data public without employees’ permission, after all. As a private enterprise, all of this is based on voluntary association and cooperation. In other words, government plays no role whatsoever in this arrangement — and both the employees and customers are free to associate elsewhere if they are offended by Food City’s efforts. The identification only applies within the store, too, unless the employees enjoy it so much that they want to wear it elsewhere.

Which makes this exactly like the Nazis, amirite?

Needless to say, this is nothing at all like the yellow Stars of David Nazis forced Jews to wear in the 1930s. In the first place, this has nothing to do with government at all. Second, the yellow stars (and other insignia for groups also considered undesirable by the Nazis) were part of a much larger and more formal mechanism for exclusion, persecution, and eventual annihilation. The Nazis weren’t stealthy about their intentions either, as they proudly proclaimed their intent to create a master race for populating Europe by ridding the continent of those they considered subhuman.

Anyone with a small amount of education in history — or any sense of proportion — would never have even considered this argument, let alone publish it. No one is persecuting the unvaccinated. Food City is actually ending the mask mandate Rep. Taylor Greene (R-GA) opposes, and putting in its place an entirely voluntary honor system. They aren’t even requiring employees to be vaccinated, even though legally there’s some room for Food City to do so. They are actually doing what Taylor Greene supposedly wants — leaving the unvaccinated to their own ends and making it clear that any consequences are theirs to deal with.

Is this idiotic equivalence evidence of anti-Semitism? I wouldn’t go that far, mainly because this kind of insane idiocy is bad enough from an elected official, but others might see it differently. Equating the horrors of the Holocaust to an employee-badge icon certainly smacks of belittling the genocide by comparison.

Will House Republican leaders call out Taylor Greene for this hyperbolic and inflammatory nonsense? Or have they given up being leaders at all? Especially since Taylor Greene appears to have an obsession with Nazi comparisons:

In an appearance last week on the podcast “The Water Cooler with David Brody,” Greene lamented to a nodding Brody about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s decision to maintain a mask mandate on the House floor because of concerns many GOP members may not be vaccinated.

“This woman is mentally ill,” Greene said of Pelosi, D-Calif. “You know, we can look back in a time in history where people were told to wear a gold star and they were definitely treated like second-class citizens — so much so that they were put in trains and taken to gas chambers in Nazi Germany, and this is exactly the type of abuse that Nancy Pelosi is talking about.”

She was referring to the millions of Jews who were forced to wear a Star of David on their clothes, sent to concentration camps and murdered during World War II. A poll conducted this year showed an increase in antisemitism around the world, as well as a lack of awareness about the Holocaust among adults under 40, 11 percent of whom said they believed it was caused by Jewish people.

Utterly insane. And it shouldn’t just be left to Adam Kinzinger, Peter Meijer, and Liz Cheney to say so.

Update: Well, well, well … look who found a little intestinal fortitude:

McCarthy provides a diversionary attack on Nancy Pelosi, but still “condemns this language”:

“Marjorie is wrong, and her intentional decision to compare the horrors of the Holocaust with wearing masks is appalling. The Holocaust is the greatest atrocity committed in history. The fact that this needs to be stated today is deeply troubling.

“At a time when the Jewish people face increased violence and threats, anti-Semitism is on the rise in the Democrat Party and is completely ignored by Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

“Americans must stand together to defeat anti-Semitism and any attempt to diminish the history of the Holocaust.

“Let me be clear: the House Republican Conference condemns this language.”

The attack on Pelosi is too obvious a ploy to succeed in distracting anyone from Taylor Greene’s idiocy. Why bother with it at all?