E-mail Lesson #27: If you are going to forward a YouTube video, watch it first.
An administrative aide to state Rep. Laura Wiley learned the hard way, after she sent out a video critical of President Barack Obama featuring pictures of German SS officers at Auschwitz, the Nazi death camp, Joe Neff reports.
Searing, an advocate for affordable and universal health care, said he was offended for professional and personal reasons.
"My great uncle on my mom's side — Everett Peterson — died on Omaha Beach on June 6th 1944 in Normandy fighting those guys in the photos," Searing said. "He didn't die so that 65 years later somebody could equate the evil he fought and defeated with a policy proposal to expand health coverage."
More after the jump.
The text of the email starts off, "You MUST listen to this - THIS IS GENOCIDE!"
The audio is a talk radio excerpt in which former N.Y. Lieutenant Governor Betsy McCaughey charged that the health care plan calls for mandatory euthanasia counseling every five years for senior citizens. (It doesn't: the AARP has labeled McCaughey's claim “rife with gross, cruel distortions.”)
The video shows a series of photographs from a photo album maintained by SS officer Karl Hoecker, who was the second in command at Auschwitz at the end of World War II.
Edna Pearce, the legislative aide, said she listened to the video but never watched it.
"I clicked on the YouTube, it was a black screen and I was listening to it for a couple of minutes as I checked email, and I forwarded it," Pearce said.
Pearce said she never saw the images until contacted by Dome.
"I almost had a heart attack," she said. "Let me assure you, it was completely innocent."
Wiley agreed, saying her aide would never knowingly send such a stupid video.
"She did not see what was on it," said Wiley, a Greensboro Republican. "I will tell you this about her, she's a very proper woman."