Does McCain’s “That One” Remark Count As Hate Speech?


There’s been a lot of ugliness surrounding John McCain’s presidential campaign as of late. One McCain support got a bit of press yesterday after suggesting we “kill” Barack Obama, the Democratic candidate another Republican backer described as a “terrorist.”

Some have equated the statements as hate speech, and journalist Leah McElrath Renna suggests McCain may also be guilty of embracing disdainful semantics:

When McCain uses dehumanizing phrases like “that one” to refer to Barack Obama, he is implementing long-standing military techniques for dehumanizing one’s opponent during wartime. But this is NOT a war, and McCain’s behavior in this context is beyond irresponsible and amounts to hate speech.

According to military wisdom, dehumanization is a necessary technique during wartime because it enables human beings to kill other human beings without hesitation in combat situations.

Think about that.

Oh, we’re thinking about it, Leah. Good and hard, too!