This is one of those stories that is going to make you wince because you have to side with a guy who loves to say Nazi stuff. Ugh. Let me explain.
Back in April Markus Meechan, a 28-year-old from Scotland posted one of those wacky prank videos to YouTube. He explains in the vid that:
“My girlfriend is always ranting and raving about how cute and adorable her wee dog is. So I thought I would turn him into the least cute thing I could think of – which is a Nazi.”
So whenever Meechan yells “Sieg Heil” to his girlfriend’s little pug, ironically named “Buddha,” it gives the Nazi salute. OK, on face value that is kind of a funny prank! If he had just trained the dog to lift its little paw in a faux Nazi salute ala a classic Mel Brooks bit, and stopped there it might have been fine. His girlfriend sure would have been pissed.
However, Meechan goes on to train the dog to respond to the phrase “Do you want to gas the Jews!?” He keeps saying this phrase throughout the video and it’s pretty fucking deplorable. This led to widespread condemnation across the internet as the video quickly went viral.
Warning: The contents of this video were so offensive that a man was arrested for them. Break.com does not advocate the indoctrination of pugs into the principles of the National Socialist German Worker’s Party. You can watch the original video here:
Meechan apologized for the video, saying;
“I didn’t intend for this to go viral, it was a private joke between friends and it ended up everywhere after someone posted onto Reddit. My friends know my sense of humor which is very, very based on shock comedy, but the internet doesn’t. I just want everyone to know that I don’t wish any ill-will on any race or anything, it’s just how shock comedy works. I am so sorry to the Jewish community for any offence I have caused them. This was never my intention and I apologize.’
Someone is in the dog house.
However he was later arrested by police at his home in Coatbridge, North Lanarkshirefor for a hate crime. He was in custody overnight and released the next morning. Detective Inspector David Cockburn told the media that Meechan was arrested as part of the Electronic Communications Act of 2003. He said:
“The clip is deeply offensive and no reasonable person can possibly find the content acceptable in today’s society. This arrest should serve as a warning to anyone posting such material online, or in any other capacity, that such views will not be tolerated.”
The girlfriend is sticking by her man and the Nazi pug.
Now there is no indication that the man is in fact a Nazi, a Nazi sympathizer or a white supremacist of any kind. He’s just some dumb jackoff with a sick sense of humor. You shouldn’t be arrested for that, or else we here at Break are going to be in some serious trouble. While in the United States of America this arrest would clearly be unconstitutional, in other countries, including our good friends in the United Kingdom “freedom of speech” can sometimes be more of a light suggestion than an engrained right and principle. So even if he WAS a shithead Nazi and posted a horrible rant to YouTube, even racists have freedom of speech. As the saying goes, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
The guy might be a dick for making the Nazi video, but it’s just a dumb video. In America freedom of speech is so fundamental that even the ACLU defended a Neo Nazi group’s right to it. In 1978 a Nazi group caused a big stir when it planned to stage a march through the Chicago suburb of Skokie, where many holocaust survivors lived. The ACLU stuck to many of the arguments it had used to defend Civil Rights era protests to defend the Nazi’s right to free speech and assembly. It is not about the message, but the right to deliver it.
Now take the Nazi Pug Poll!
Follow Phil Haney on Twitter @PhilHaney