Frank Figluizzi, an NBC News national security contributor, voiced a bizarre criticism of President Donald Trump after Trump ordered flags to be flown at half mast because of the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. Figluizzi said that the date, August 8th, meant that the shorthand date of 8/8 could be viewed as a reference to 88 which could be a reference to HH (the eighth letter in the alphabet) which could be viewed as a salute to “Heil Hitler.” Figluizzi explained that Trump could be simply ignorant of the obvious reference. There is another possibility: Frank Figluizzi is a reference to FF which is a reference to 66 (as the sixth letter in the alphabet) which is a reference to Route 66 which is a reference to the song “Get Your Kicks On Route 66” which is a reference to freeing yourself from any obligations or responsibilities . . . like serious commentary.
Figluizzi is the former FBI assistant director of counterintelligence and told MSNBC’s Brian Williams:
“It’s the little things and the language and messaging that matters. The president said that we will fly our flags at half-mast until Aug. 8. That’s 8/8. Now, I’m not going to imply that he did this deliberately, but I am using it as an example of the ignorance of the adversary that’s being demonstrated by the White House. The numbers 88 are very significant in neo-Nazi and white supremacy movement. Why? Because the letter ‘H’ is the eighth letter of the alphabet, and to them the numbers 88 together stand for ‘Heil Hitler.’ So we’re going to be raising the flag back up at dusk on 8/8.”
He then added without a hint of humor or irony: “No one’s thinking about this, no one’s giving him the advice. Or he’s rejecting the advice.”
The reason that “no one’s thinking about this” is that it is perfectly insane. It is even hard to believe that a hardcore Nazi would celebrate an obvious pure coincidence of an abbreviated date memorializing victims. If they do, it is hardly a reason to delay the nation mourning the dead.
This is not the first such controversy of 88. We previously discussed how some people objected to a detergent because it happened to show a jersey with 88 on the box.
One has to give the NBC analyst some credit for finding a way — no matter how contrived — to criticize Trump for honoring the dead of these massacres and to suggest that it is actually a celebrating of white supremacy. I am highly skeptical that neo-Nazis would celebrate the coincidence but if they do it is because they are perfectly insane. That does not mean that Trump should wait until 8/9/2019 to mourn the fallen . . . which would translate to HITS for the alphabetically obsessional.