The Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect has called on Tim Allen to issue an apology after he jokingly compared being a conservative in Hollywood to living in 1930s Germany.
The Toy Story star made the comments on an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live last Thursday, in response to Kimmel asking him about attending Donald Trump’s inauguration. “You’ve got to be careful around here. You’re going to get beat up if you don’t believe what everybody believes. This is like 30s Germany,” he said.
Allen’s remarks were subsequently condemned by the organisation, which campaigns for “civil and human rights across America”, in a Facebook post.
“Tim, have you lost your mind?” the post quoted Steven Goldstein, the organisation’s executive director, as saying. “No one in Hollywood today is subjecting you or anyone else to what the Nazis imposed on Jews in the 1930s – the world’s most evil program of dehumanisation, imprisonment and mass brutality, implemented by an entire national government, as the prelude for the genocide of nearly an entire people.
“Sorry, Tim, that’s just not the same as getting turned down for a movie role. It’s time for you to leave your bubble to apologise to the Jewish people and, to be sure, the other peoples also targeted by the Nazis.”
Allen, who is currently appearing in ABC sitcom Last Man Standing, has been a vocal supporter of the Republican party. He endorsed Ohio governor John Kasich in the Republican primaries for the 2016 presidential election and promised to “drill Hillary [Clinton]” in his sitcom, in which he plays a sporting-goods store owner who presents a right-wing talk radio show in his spare time.
Last Man Standing has been praised by conservatives for its right-wing viewpoint at a time when much of Hollywood is characterised as being liberal. “Finally, we have a hero who hunts, fishes, watches sports, and occasionally drives a tank, wrote right-wing journal the Imaginative Conservative about the show.
Allen courted controversy in 2013 after he argued that he should be allowed to use the n-word . “If I have no intent, if I show no intent, if I clearly am not a racist, then how can ‘nigger’ be bad coming out of my mouth?” he said.