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Yardsale420 t1_j6l9rm0 wrote

Behind the Bastards does a 2 part episode on him and it’s SO MUCH WORSE than you can imagine. If I asked you who the worst person of all time was you probably say Hitler. But Leopold II might actually be worse. At least Hitler had semi redeeming qualities like his skill as an orator or his love of animals. Leopold had zero redeeming qualities. He was just a piece of shit.


Chillchinchila1 t1_j6lh5ks wrote

You don’t need to sanitize the Nazis to condemn Leopold’s. Seriously what is with redditors that can’t talk about any historical tragedy without going “the Nazis were teddy bears compared to this”.

It’s not even like Leopold killed more people, or had less noble goals, hitler wanted to exterminate most of the human population.


Belongs-InTheTrash t1_j6lxcfs wrote

For real like did this person really write “at least Hitler had semi redeeming qualities” and get upvotes


zebulonworkshops t1_j6mo9wa wrote

It's called nuance. It's weird that people have such a hard time discerning between two terrible things. You can acknowledge someone is one of the top two terrible humans to ever exist and still have people offended, which is kinda inevitable but, it's not saying one is puppies and rainbows. It's using the one as the bar for worst person ever.


dressageishard t1_j6o2wq3 wrote

Agree. He killed too many people to have any redeeming qualities. If we were to weigh his pros and cons, his murdering millions of innocent people would outweigh any pros. If there were any pros to weigh in. Sheesh!


DaveOJ12 t1_j6lc8hm wrote

>At least Hitler had semi redeeming qualities like his skill as an orator or his love of animals

Hitler put those good qualities to good use, right?


covfefe-boy t1_j6lcnb7 wrote

Well, Hitler killed Hitler, you have to at least give him that.


DaveOJ12 t1_j6liiy1 wrote

I've never heard that one before.


platoprime t1_j6lyd2a wrote

I have but it just goes in one ear and out the other ya know?


Jason_CO t1_j6m9yxk wrote

I don't find those qualities redeem what he did at all.


AloofCommencement t1_j6mcj66 wrote

A redeeming quality isn't something that completely negates all negative actions. It's merely a point in the "Good" column.

What made you think that the commenter was trying to convey that a love of animals counts as redemption for what he did? Even without a definition it's pretty easy to pick up the point being made.


Jason_CO t1_j6n947w wrote

I got the point, I just think a different word would have served better.


1945BestYear t1_j6miv7x wrote

I would've defined "redeeming" as specifically not being a mere point in the good column, there has to be a relationship between it and the person's bad qualities. If you redeem a debt, you are paying it back, you are "making it good", it's not as if the debt you owe is redeemed if other people are also indebted to you.

If you want to see any quality in Hitler that could barely, arguably be categorized as "redeeming" in the light of his monstrous crimes, then it would be that he had a, very limited and specific, idea of "the German People" that he thought he was leading to a better future in a world he considered to be one of unending racial conflict. That's something at least, "As big as I am, the People is even bigger than me", we can agree that Hitler was wrong and also say that he subscribed to propositions that at least make it understandable why he'd consider himself a selfless hero. Leopold didn't even have that, he owned the Congo as his personal estate, legally the Belgian people and government had nothing to do with it, and he was under no obligation to enrich them or anybody else for it, it literally just existed only to make Leopold, already the constitutional monarch of a nation, even more rich and powerful.


AloofCommencement t1_j6mmgo3 wrote

There seem to be mixed opinions on what redeeming qualities are, and even this page contradicts itself by following its definition with usage examples that do not completely redeem a person. The examples show insufficiently redeeming qualities still being redeeming qualities, and I think whether or not that counts is what it comes down to.

I've always understood redeeming qualities to be positive traits, not necessarily ones that completely redeem. Things that shift the balance, if only the tiniest amount, from "bad" to "good". In this context, Adolf Hitler vs Leopold as people is the subject so I would think any positive attribute counts.

To circle back round to the original point of why I commented, we're talking about a race to the bottom where the usual contender for "Worst person ever" has slightly more in his favour than Leopold: the lesser known but in /u/Yardsale420's opinion arguably worse person. I would absolutely include your point of better intent, too. At least he thought he was doing something for the greater good in his twisted mind. Replies ignored everything and cherrypicked "Dogs mean Hitler was an upstanding citizen on balance", which is a gross misrepresentation even if you disagree with a definition.


1945BestYear t1_j6mphql wrote

Yeah, that's fair. "Redeem" is just one of those words you have to lock down a very specific and explained meaning if you're going to use it in an argument. Under the meaning that I use, I think it's defensible to consider Leopold the worse person, he did things that earn him the infamy of the world just because he wanted money and land over which he could rule as a true despot. Under your meaning, which admits that any positive qualities of either could be counted just to merely register against their evil, I don't know enough about Leopold as a person to measure against the slightly more that I know about Hitler as a person. I'm sure Leopold would have to have had something, maybe he liked playing with his grandchildren, or he washed his hands after going to the toilet, or maybe he was just charming and interesting in conversation (apparently Hitler, for all his regarded charisma on the speaker's podium, was usually kinda awkward and even dull if you had to talk to him, people who met him who weren't committed Nazis seemed to often find him disappointing next to his reputation).


AloofCommencement t1_j6mrx8o wrote

That's a good point. Really it's a comparison of public profiles, and that's not exactly the gold standard of usable information. I imagine a certain amount is also gleaned from Mein Kampf, and an elected figure is inherently more public than royalty. Hitler put himself on display, and I imagine Leopold wasn't quite so interested in that.

I didn't know that about Hitler being awkward and dull, that's interesting.


TjeefGuevarra t1_j6mpqk3 wrote

Hitler was also a raging racist that actively tried to exterminate entire peoples because he thought they were abominations.

Leopold just let millions of people die because he wanted money.

They're both absolute pieces of shit but you can't possibly say Leopold was worse when Hitler did all of his killing on purpose whereas Leopold simply didn't give a fuck as long as he got profits.


alchemistakoo t1_j6pf0fq wrote

Leopold didn't "let ppl die". They tortured those folks. Cut off feet and hands and kept em as trinkets.


PureImbalance t1_j6mvea9 wrote

I agree. It is however in different contexts an interesting question which evil would weigh heavier: The one intentionally inflicted with a reason behind it, or the one inflicted out of callous disregard.
IIRC Chomsky made an argument about that that bombing the Al-Shifa factory should be considered a worse evil than the twin tower attack in the sense that both were terrorist attacks (as long as you recognize state terrorism as terrorism) with similar order of magnitude of death toll - however intentional killing in a perverted sense at least recognizes the human status of the victim, while the Clinton Administration simply did not consider it important that thousands would die in some poor african nation somewhere as a consequence.