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Hank Williams Jr. didn't defame the president

Hank Williams

Every high school debater knows better than to compare anything or anybody to Hitler. It's the analogy that is always disproportionate, and often tasteless by seeming to minimize the perfidy of the Nazis.

That said, I think Hank Williams Jr. has gotten a bum rap for a riff in which he compared President Obama golfing with Republicans to Hitler golfing with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Predictably, Williams has apologized, sort of:  "Some of us have strong opinions and are often misunderstood. My analogy was extreme -- but it was to make a point. I was simply trying to explain how stupid it seemed to me -- how ludicrous that pairing was."

The truth is that Williams' explanation shouldn't have been necessary. It was obvious that he wasn't comparing Hitler to Obama, or vice versa. To pretend otherwise is to engage in manufactured outrage. Williams may not be a brilliant political thinker, but he's innocent of defaming the president.

Are you ready for some political football?

ALSO:

Enough with the Obama-as-Hitler cracks

Hank Williams Jr. apologizes for Hitler-Obama analogy

Should Hank Williams Jr. remain voice of 'Monday Night Football'?

--Michael McGough

Photo: Country singer Hank Williams Jr. apologized Tuesday for using an analogy to Adolf Hitler in discussing President Obama. Credit: Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images

 

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The Opinion L.A. blog is the work of Los Angeles Times Editorial Board membersNicholas Goldberg, Robert Greene, Carla Hall, Jon Healey, Sandra Hernandez, Karin Klein, Michael McGough, Jim Newton and Dan Turner. Columnists Patt Morrison and Doyle McManus also write for the blog, as do Letters editor Paul Thornton, copy chief Paul Whitefield and senior web producer Alexandra Le Tellier.



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