Cynthia Miller-Idriss, an MSNBC Opinion Columnist, recently attempted to link physical fitness with Naziism and white supremacy. In a March 22nd piece, she stated that “A network of online ‘fascist fitness’ chat groups on the encrypted platform Telegram are recruiting and radicalizing young men with neo-Nazi and white supremacist extremist ideologies.” She opined that these young men are “initially lured with health tips and strategies for positive physical changes,” but are “later invited to closed chat groups where far-right content is shared.”
Miller-Idriss also noted that “It appears the far right has taken advantage of pandemic at-home fitness trends” to expand its “radicalization of physical mixed martial arts (MMA) and combat sports spaces.” Yes, we all know how conservatives famously embraced the pandemic lockdowns. Perhaps they were secretly behind the push to keep people from leaving their abodes.
Then Miller-Idriss observed: “Physical fitness has always been central to the far right. In ‘Mein Kampf,’ Hitler fixated on boxing and jujitsu, believing they could help him create an army of millions whose aggressive spirit and impeccably trained bodies, combined with ‘fanatical love of the fatherland,’ would do more for the German nation than any ‘mediocre’ tactical weapons training.”
“Physical fitness has always been central to the ‘far right’?” Like who? Herman Göring? William F. Buckley, Jr.? Rush Limbaugh? Does she think the ancient Greeks and Romans were progenitors of Naziism? Actually, we can be sure Miller-Idriss thinks anyone to the starboard side of V.I. Lenin is “far right.”
But the illustrious and insightful MSNBC columnist wasn’t done yet. She bravely soldiered on, saying, “The intersection of extremism and fitness leans into a shared obsession with the male body, training, masculinity, testosterone, strength and competition.” You know it, sister! “Fitness,” “training,” “strength,” and “competition” are nothing but dog-whistles for a radical right-wing takeover of all that we hold dear!
I bet you, dear reader, didn’t know that the YMCA is actually a haven for aspiring Hitler Youth. Did you? Or that the President’s Council on Physical Fitness is naught but a redoubt of White Supremacy. Or that “gym” is not, in fact, just short for gymnasium…a German word…but also stands for “Gestapo Youth of ‘Merica.”
In the face of this compelling—indeed overwhelming—evidence, I’m calling for the four major professional sports leagues in North America to ban all workouts, training, and practices…so as not to contribute to the advancement and outright worship of fitness fascism in America.
This means you, LeBron James. And you, Patrick Mahomes. And you, Shohei Ohtani. And you, P.K. Subban. Stop exercising and start being more woke! Better yet, grow a vagina…or a pot belly! So we’d know we can trust you.
The Theater of the Absurd that passes for our modern society deems all striving for excellence, whether intellectual, vocational or physical, as simply a nod to-- or feature of-- a white, male Christian patriarchy. The desire for fitness, you see, in the eyes of leftists, can only be part and parcel of a vast, right-wing conspiracy to return us all to the halcyon days of the Third Reich.