RFK Jr.’s wife calls his Anne Frank anti-mask analogy 'reprehensible and insensitive'

RFK Jr.’s wife calls his Anne Frank anti-mask analogy 'reprehensible and insensitive'
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on the red carpet at Celebrity Fight Night XXIII at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa in Phoenix, Arizona, via Gage Skidmore.

On Sunday, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. dragged his family name through the garbage bin once again, appearing at an anti-vaccine, anti-mandate rally in Washington, D.C. The silver-spooned child of well-regarded political leaders, Kennedy Jr. told the crowd that today’s mandates, along with technological advances in surveillance, had rendered anti-maskers and anti-vaxxers more persecuted than Anne Frank.

His exact quote was: “Even in Hitler’s Germany, you could cross the Alps into Switzerland, you could hide in an attic like Anne Frank did. I visited in 1962 East Germany with my father, and met people who had climbed the wall and escaped. So it was possible. Many died [inaudible], but it was possible.” One of those people who died was Anne Frank. Anne Frank was 13 years old when she and her family went into hiding in an attic. Twenty-five months later, at the age of 15, after spending all of her time in an attic, she was captured and sent to a concentration camp. She died a year later. RFK Jr. is making money because his grandfather was a super wealthy, politically well-connected guy. He’s able to go anywhere in the world, not wear a mask at the Capitol of our country, and spew a bunch of bad science takes without fear of imprisonment.

Kennedy Jr., who is suing Daily Kos over a community post detailing his appearance at a similar rally in Germany that was attended by neo-Nazis, pissed off just about everyone with this truly offensive analogy. Frank is one of the world’s most well-known symbols of the profound tragedies of the Holocaust. She is a reminder of what was lost when humanity failed to stop the rise of Nazi fascism.

An entire day of responses to RFK Jr.’s terrible speech included this very personal one from his sister.

Early on Tuesday, RFK Jr. released a statement on Twitter saying, “I apologize for my reference to Anne Frank, especially to families that suffered the Holocaust horrors. My intention was to use examples of past barbarism to show the perils from new technologies of control. To the extent my remarks caused hurt, I am truly and deeply sorry.”

About 20 minutes later, RFK Jr.’s wife, actor Cheryl Hines—who has a recent history of throwing house parties that expect visitors to have proof of vaccination and other sensible COVID-19 public health precautions—tweeted out: “My husband’s reference to Anne Frank at a mandate rally in D.C. was reprehensible and insensitive. The atrocities that millions endured during the Holocaust should never be compared to anyone or anything. His opinions are not a reflection of my own.”

As Media Matters reporter Eric Hananoki pointed out, this isn’t the first time RFK Jr. has had to apologize for mixing and matching the extermination of millions and millions of European Jews with public health programs in the United States. Back in 2015, Junior said that the U.S. vaccine program had created a “holocaust” in deleterious health effects. He had to ask for forgiveness for that at the time, saying, “I want to apologize to all whom I offended by my use of the word ‘holocaust’ to describe the autism epidemic. I employed the term during an impromptu speech as I struggled to find an expression to convey the catastrophic tragedy of autism, which has now destroyed the lives of over 20 million children and shattered their families. I am acutely aware of the profound power attached to that word, and I will find other terms to describe the autism crisis in the future.”

There is zero connection between autism and early childhood vaccines. This has been proven time and time again, even by studies funded by anti-vaxxers.

And because of Cheryl Hines’ connection to Larry David’s show Curb Your Enthusiasm, a reminder on how to take a strong position against fascism and anti-science.


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