Frequent Fox News guest and conservative commentator Candace Owens has come under scrutiny after video of remarks she made about Adolf Hitler’s plan for Germany, describing it as initially “O.K.,” during an event launching the British chapter of conservative group Turning Point USA resurfaced online.
“I actually don’t have any problems at all with the word ‘nationalism.’ I think that the definition gets poisoned by elitists that actually want globalism. Globalism is what I don’t want. … Whenever we say ‘nationalism,’ the first thing people think about, at least in America, is Hitler. You know, he was a national socialist, but if Hitler just wanted to make Germany great and have things run well, OK, fine,” she said at the time.
“The problem is that he wanted — he had dreams outside of Germany. He wanted to globalize. He wanted everybody to be German, everybody to be speaking German. Everybody to look a different way. That’s not, to me, that’s not nationalism. In thinking about how we could go bad down the line, I don’t really have an issue with nationalism. I really don’t. I think that it’s O.K.”
Here is video of Candace Owens' full answer on nationalism and Hitler pic.twitter.com/NfBvoH8vQg
— John Whitehouse (@existentialfish) February 8, 2019
Condemnation rained down on Owens as soon as her past comments began to circulate online.
Me: whew looks like Black History Month Day 8 just might squeak by without a —
Candace Owens: *grabs mic* I HAVE SOME THOUGHTS ON HITLER
— Eric Haywood (@EricHaywood) February 8, 2019
Apparently Candace Owens thinks the problem with Hitler was that he wanted to expand his agenda *beyond* Germany. But other than that, things were totally peachy? https://t.co/mcgJdAFVHX pic.twitter.com/bzPRVtZmA1
— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) February 8, 2019
okay this is epic! pic.twitter.com/oXoysppvq5
— jordan (@JordanUhl) February 8, 2019
Candace Owens talks about Hitler and the Holocaust the way old hippies talk about Dylan going electric.
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) February 8, 2019
Candace Owens: I liked Hitler's early stuff, before he went mass market https://t.co/1IxuqJK1gG
— Justin Miller (@justinjm1) February 8, 2019
The question of how Owens would explain herself was bound to nag on people’s minds. She soon responded with a brand new video in which she said she stood by her original statements.
Owens said she had tailored her response to a question an audience member at the event asked her about nationalism. She said she felt the urge to respond thoroughly, because “nationalism is conflated with, for some reason, Hitler.”
“The only interpretation people in America seem to have is they instantly think of Hitler and I think that’s really, really wrong and that we almost have to correct the record on that. I don’t view nationalism or believing in the sovereignty of your nation first, like Trump employs an ‘America First’ policy, [Jair] Bolsonaro employs a ‘Brazil First’ policy… when the sovereignty of your nation is being threatened by outside forces, it’s very important that we stand on our own two feet and say that we are going to put our nation first, so I answered the question and said to them just that, which is that people wrongly conflate the word nationalism to mean Hitler.
Hitler was a national socialist, but in my interpretation or from my understanding I would make the argument that he wasn’t a nationalist. I would make the argument that he was a homicidal, psychotic maniac who was bent on world domination outside the confines of Germany, and he wouldn’t say that he was a nationalist because he wasn’t about putting Germans first: There were German Jews he was putting in camps and murdering. He was a mass murderer.
So that’s the argument I was making on stage, that this man by no means could be considered a nationalist. Everything he did was just being a psychopathic murderer hellbent on world domination.”
Was Hitler a nationalist? (And Leftist journalists are still insane). https://t.co/ulxZXCWquh
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) February 8, 2019
Owens added that she doesn’t believe Trump (let alone Bolsonaro) intend to “conquer the world” but that the two are “employing” a type of nationalism that is “desperately needed in times like this when you have people trying to globalize our economy and we’re seeing that America has been hurt by it and other nations have been hurt by it.”
Owens’s rationalizations were met with derision.
So what's your ideal Hitler amount, Candace? Like 88%?
— Jesus Christ (@SonOfGodAndMan) February 8, 2019
At least one person pointed out the antisemitic implications of the word “globalist,” highlighting a rather ironic bent in Owens’s response.
Nationalism as practiced by Hitler and American nationalists is all about ethnic purity and reducing or eliminating the rights of those declared to be "undesirable". Hitler opened the first concentration camp in 1933, long before his supposed "globalism."
— richard_thunderbay (@thunderbay63) February 8, 2019
Of course Hitler was a nationalist. To contend otherwise is pure drivel, that isn’t supported by History. Just admit that you misspoke, and move along. Nationalism, at its heart, is inherently flawed as it is loyalty to the state. Patriotism is something else entirely.
— Michael Hollis (@MichaelHollis89) February 8, 2019
So what you're saying is that if Hitler had only massacred the Jews IN GERMANY, that would be "fine"? I watched the video, you're being disingenuous about how utterly offensive you were. Shame on you. Don't try to gaslight people.
— Jennifer M (@jmal2009) February 8, 2019
President Donald Trump has often characterized his approach to the American economy as a rebuke against globalism. In October, he attacked “globalists” who he said are working with foreign countries to “cheat” American workers.
“They’re called globalists. I like the globe too, but we have to take care of our people,” he said at the time.
Just moments after Trump calls for unity at a WH event, he references "globalists," prompting several audience members shout "Soros" — who was a target of one of the bombs — and others shout "lock him up" to which Trump chuckles, points and repeats "lock him up" pic.twitter.com/IWZR3DRCvk
— Robert Maguire (@RobertMaguire_) October 26, 2018
Turning Point USA has not responded to requests for comment. Owens is the group’s Director of Communications.