Hank Williams Jr: Obama is to Hitler

Commentary | Okay, so by now most people have heard about the analogy that country-music legend Hank Williams, Jr. made on Fox and Friends last week. In discussing American politics and President Obama’s golf outing with Senate Majority Leader Boehner, Hank Williams, Jr. said, “That’s like Hitler [golfing] with Netanyahu.”

And let the games begin.

Immediate Reaction

The hosts of Fox and Friends were visibly shaken by the comment. It may have had something to do with Hank Williams Jr. and his over-the-top demeanor throughout his visit on the show via satellite. It may have to do with the cast members misunderstanding the singer’s comment; thinking immediately that he had compared Obama to Hitler directly. Either way, they were visibly stunned by it.

Delayed Reaction

That night, the iconic intro song for Monday Night Football was missing. For two decades, football fans have listened to and watched Hank Williams Jr. perform “Are You Ready for Some Football”, a rewrite of his hit country party-ballad of the 70s, “All My Rowdy Friends are Coming Over Tonight”. Because of the comments Hank Williams Jr. made earlier that day, the networks of ABC and ESPN, as well as officials at the NFL, decided they wanted no part of this particular burgeoning pundit.

Interviews, Conjecture and the Truth

Since his firing, Hank Williams Jr. has written a “love song” for Fox, been interviewed on such outlets as “The View” and basically been digging himself into a deeper hole. He gives a really horrible interview with nonsensical ramblings and over-the-top emotional outbursts. He would be better served to stick to live concerts where the audience is firmly on his side, mentally, emotionally and politically.

That said, let’s take a look at the original statement that started the entire debacle.

Hank Williams Jr. made an analogy. He did not say that Obama was Hitler. He didn’t even imply it, really. He said that Obama having a friendly game of golf with someone who is politically and idealistically a polar opposite (Boehner) was “like” Hitler playing golf with Netanyahu. He could have just as easily said that it was be like Lex Luther (the bad guy) playing golf with Mickey Mouse (the good guy) and made the same point, albeit not as stronger. In this context, the singer picked the better of two analogies.

Generally, when we make an analogy like this, we place “like references” into the positions. Obama is to Hitler as Boehner is to Netanyahu, in this case. So obviously, Hank Williams Jr. is no fan of Obama, and he thinks pretty highly of Boehner.

I am a fan of Hank Williams Jr. music. He is country music royalty; nobody can dispute that. However, I am not a fan of his politics. I am not a fan of his lifestyle choices. But that doesn’t matter. He has the right to speak his mind (and remember, please, that mind has been affected by severe head trauma in an accident that nearly killed him several decades ago) as he sees fit. He is not a great interviewer. He is a great communicator, however, through his music.

Perhaps he should stick to that.


The Young Turks, Hank Williams Jr on the “The View” Defending Obama Hitler “Analogy”

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