On July 5, a Kansas county Republican Party chairperson who owns a weekly newspaper removed and apologized for posting a cartoon drawing on the paper’s Facebook page that compared Gov. Laura Kelly‘s (D-Kansas) order that all people must wear masks in public to the Holocaust.

Dane Hicks, the county GOP chairman and the owner of The Anderson County Review, posted a cartoon on Friday that depicted Kelly with a coronavirus protective face mask with the Star of David. In the drawing, Kelly was stationed ahead of people being loaded onto a cattle car. The caption read, “Lockdown Laura says: Put on your mask … and step onto the cattle car.”

During World War II, Jews were required to wear the Star of David by German Nazi officers.

Kelly responded by saying that the image was “deeply offensive” and demanded that it be taken down.

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Hicks said in a statement that was shared on Facebook, “After some heartfelt and educational conversation with Jewish leaders … I can acknowledge the imagery in my recent editorial cartoon describing state government overreach in Kansas with images of the Holocaust was deeply hurtful to members of a culture who’ve been dealt plenty of hurt throughout history — people to whom I never desired to be hurtful in the illustration of my point.”

He added, “It is not my intention to heap more grief onto this historical burden, and it’s apparent I previously lacked an adequate understanding of the severity of their experience and the pain of its images.”

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