Fox News contributor Tomi Lahren became the latest conservative to compare COVID-19 restrictions to Nazism on Thursday, accusing flight attendants enforcing federal rules mandating masks on flights of acting like “Nazis of the air.”
In recent months, a number of right-wing politicians and personalities have raged against vaccinations and other coronavirus mitigation efforts by drawing comparisons to the Third Reich. Conspiracy-peddling Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), for instance, recently apologized for claiming the House of Representatives’ mask mandates were similar to the Holocaust—only to embrace the Nazi analogy again weeks later.
“People have a choice, they don’t need your medical brown shirts showing up at their door ordering vaccinations. You can’t force people to be part of the human experiment,” she tweeted this week in response to the White House’s promise to directly offer vaccines to people.
During Thursday’s broadcast of Fox News midday roundtable show Outnumbered, the panel discussed the recent surge of violence among unruly passengers at airports and planes, with much of the blame being laid at the feet of the airlines for still enforcing the Transportation Security Administration’s rules.
Reacting to a video of a massive flight at Detroit’s airport, Federalist senior editor Christopher Bedford said “there are people acting like animals and staff and stewardesses who are treating people like cattle.”
Grumbling that there’s been a “complete breakdown of standards,” Bedford complained about passengers’ personal appearance and lack of “dignity” before adding that he can no longer “get a beer” on a flight “because people want to act like animals.”
Former White House press secretary and current Fox News co-host Kayleigh McEnany was a bit sympathetic towards flight staff, calling on everyone to “be nice to our flight attendants” because they’d had a “brutal year” of layoffs and “being the mask police.” She then called for airlines to “follow the science” and lift mask mandates, “especially for vaccinated people.”
Lahren, however, wasn’t willing to offer that amount of grace to airline employees.
“But I will disagree a little bit with Kayleigh on this. I don’t honestly ever do this, but I will say there are so many good flight attendants out there. But there are some flight attendants that take their job as the mask police to an extreme,” the right-wing provocateur exclaimed.
“That is true,” McEnany replied.
“Becoming almost Nazis of the air,” Lahren continued as Bedford laughed.
“Nurse Ratched,” he interjected, referencing the sadistic character from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Lahren said that lifting of mask mandates on airlines would make “a lot of these issues” go away. Meanwhile, none of the other panelists reacted to the conservative pundit’s Nazi analogy.
Since the start of the pandemic, Lahren has made it a habit to loudly criticize any and all mitigation efforts and health-related guidelines. In April last year, she compared social distancing to “willful slavery.”
Furthermore, besides repeatedly calling Americans who wear masks “sheep” and calling for everyone to burn their face coverings, she’s also proudly declared that she will not get vaccinated.