Chris Hayes is one of MSNBC’s super-stars. With his quirky smile and goofy horn-rimmed glasses, you can always count on Hayes to get to the heart of any story, delivering expert analysis and exposing the truth no matter how difficult the topic. He is a self-identified progressive.
So you can imagine how well it went went when Hayes implored his followers on Twitter to stop referring to President Donald Trump’s migrant concentration camps as… well, concentration camps. Worse, he invoked Godwin.
Last comment on this: "concentration camp" is an extremely charged term and I get why many people are, in good faith, uncomfortable with its application for Godwin's Law purposes among others. So let's just call them "detention camps" and focus on what's happening in them.
— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) June 18, 2019
This did not go so well, and Hayes was at least man enough to admit that he expected to be bashed for his statement. What he likely didn’t expect was that Mike Godwin himself would weigh in and tell him to stop playing games.
Chris, I think they're concentration camps. Keep in mind that one of their functions *by design* is to punish those individuals and families who are detained. So even the "charged" term is appropriate.
— Mike Godwin (@sfmnemonic) June 18, 2019
Godwin’s response goes to show that Hayes, as well-intentioned as he may be, is massaging the English language. He is going out of his way to make a terrible thing seem less bad than it actually is. George Carlin spoke profanely and eloquently about using words to “hide reality,” saying “Americans have trouble facing the truth, so they invent a kind of soft language to protect themselves from it.”
Chris Hayes —journalist and progressive— should know better.