Washington state lawmaker wears yellow Star of David to protest vaccine mandates: ‘We’re all Jews’
To protest vaccine mandates a Washington state Republican lawmaker over the weekend donned a yellow Star of David, which the Nazis forced Jews to wear during Hitler's Germany. There are no vaccine mandates in the state of Washington.
"It's an echo from history," Rep. Jim Walsh claimed on Facebook, in the comments for a video of him speaking at a Washingtonians for Change meeting.
"In the current context, we're all Jews," Walsh wrote.
Hitler committed the genocide of more than six million Jews during the Holocaust. Some estimates put the total number of people slaughtered, including LGBTQ people and other minorities, religious and political dissidents, the disabled, and others at 17 million.
Walsh told The Seattle Times "he had been given the star by someone at the event, where most attendees were wearing one. He described some of the organizers as 'deeply concerned about vaccine passports and vaccine segregation.'"
Washington state Department of Labor and Industries, the Times notes, "is requiring that employers verify employee vaccination status before lifting masking requirements in their workplaces, and be able to demonstrate how they did so."
"I won't say publicly whether I am vaccinated or not," Walsh said, likening his stance to the film "Spartacus," in which former slaves, under threat of crucifixion, refuse to identify the title character to a Roman general.
Dee Simon of the Seattle-based Holocaust Center for Humanity told the Times comparing vaccine or masks to the genocide of the Holocaust "is offensive to descendants of Holocaust survivors and people who lost family and friends."
When asked if he could understand how people, especially Jews and those who lost friends and family members in the Holocaust could be offended by his actions, Walsh said, "I can't control who is offended by what," and added that some people are offended by being asked their vaccination status by their employer.
To date, about 620,000 Americans have been killed by COVID-19. None have been killed by being asked their vaccination status by their employer.
Last month Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), said having to wear a mask during the pandemic was "exactly" like the Holocaust. She later offered an apology after visiting the Holocaust Museum.