Jews and Antisemitism- why do we get it so wrong?

 

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I’ve spent years arguing with anti-Semites online. I’ve argued with them since before it was called “online”, back in the days of BBS services, dial up modems; green and black monitors. They haven’t changed much, just like Jews haven’t changed much. I almost see them as a dim, monstrous reflection. A true anti-Semite is every bit the internationalist as a Jewish banker. They may cloak themselves in any number of guises, but their anti-Jewish identity is always primary. Countless times I’ve seen self-described White Nationalists and Muslim Extremists speak with ease about “the Jews”, all differences forgotten. Jewish words and ideas are extremely powerful to Anti-Semites. They believe one Jewish woman can influence the thoughts of an entire nation. If an organization contains thousands of people, and five of them are Jewish, an anti-Semite will believe the Jews are in control, regardless of their position. Jewish people saying things drive them nuts, no matter the topic. Anti-Semites will leave nasty comments under an online recipe… “That’s not REALLY a Cherry Pie, JEW!” Always we are the focus, always we are the problem. So why, after so long dealing with this, do we not respond more effectively? Why does it always seem that antisemitism, once rooted, continues to spread?

There are a lot of reasons for this, but some are under our control. As a community, we simply don’t do well when confronted with this issue.

One great example is the saga of Mel Gibson. It’s a simple story. Mel Gibson makes a movie about Jesus. Jews complain. The complaining accomplishes nothing. Jews double down. Some of the behavior was beyond cringeworthy. Wearing concentration camp outfits (Jesus was a Nazi?) to protest the premier. Going on and on. Mel, drunk one night, had something of a response. Jews were overjoyed! We’re right! He’s a real Jew hater!!!

Was he?

It seems to me one might make the argument that “the Jews” struck first, and an inebriated Mel finally responded. Not to condone his words… but is there not something to this? Would Mel Gibson EVER have become an anti-Semitic icon had Jews not protested his work, calling him an anti-Semite before he had spoken on the subject? Is it hateful towards Jews to simply make a film about Jesus? I saw “The Passion of the Christ” with a Christian girlfriend, and I can’t fathom what the issue was. Jews, quite frankly, jumped the gun.

Fast forward to the Donald Trump campaign. Against a field of mostly establishment Neo-Cons, Trump didn’t get the support of established Jewish journalists and commentators. This was quickly noted.

Trump, as I have said before, has lived in NYC for decades, surrounded by Jewish people. There has never been an accusation of antisemitism against him. This fact didn’t seem to matter, though, as the same Jewish journalists and commentators who criticized him before began using his anti-Semitic support as an excuse for more criticism. A man who has lived and worked around Jews his whole life, accused of both outright anti-Semitism and covert support of it, for no action of his own. I have questions: Why should Trump condemn people he has no connection to? Why should Trump give those people any attention by mentioning them? Many in the Jewish community were shrill in their condemnation of Trump, but few seemed to think this through. What is accomplished when someone who doesn’t hate Jews is accused of antisemitism? The Jewish community squares off, in this case, against Republican voters who have shown strong support for Israel and the Jewish community. The antisemities laugh, watching us lose genuine support. And for what? Trump won anyway, and the Jewish community finds itself with a President we openly opposed, and a DNC that’s moving away from us. What a situation!

It’s true that those on the political Right who hate Jewish people have more of a voice than they did before. It’s true that they are emboldened. Before we blame Trump for this, we need to look in the mirror, stop overreacting to internet trolls, and absolutely stop using the term “antisemitism” when what we really mean is “I don’t agree with you.” It’s that simple. The days of crying wolf must end.

Liberal Jews are Messing Up

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We all know the stereotypes. Jewish women, Jewish girls. Aggressive, demanding, pushy!

Maybe, some might say… “whiny”!!!

If you’re a Jewish man you’ve either given voice to these opinions or privately considered them; walking home after another argument, sitting in a restaurant feeling emasculated. “All stereotypes are true” Murry Rothbard once said, and we all know there’s truth to this one. What kind of non-Jewish person would DARE to give voice to the same opinion? Clearly, only Hitler.

Or Stephen Bannon.

Liberal Jews are currently freaking out, badly. They are upset, like all liberals, that the bubble they’ve been living in for the past five or so years was a lie. An absolute, outright lie, constructed by media and entertainment sources they refused to question. While non-Jewish liberals have helpfully responded to this defeat by doubling down on anti-White racism, rioting, and general cluelessness; Jewish liberals are doing all of this AND acting as though Hitler is riding into town on the Trump train.

Which brings us back to Stephen Bannon. Trump’s pick as top White House advisor has an ex-wife who claimed he didn’t want his kids going to school with “whiny Jewish girls”; In divorce proceedings no less. Otherwise his resume includes opening Breitbart in Israel, working with Goldman Sachs and some time spent in Hollywood. David Horowitz claims to be a personal friend.

But hey, his ex-wife says he hates Jews! Also, he runs Breitbart, which liberals hate. Therefore? Piece after piece in the mainstream media, claiming he’s a “White Nationalist”.

This isn’t even the worst of it. You’ve probably seen the hysterical articles claiming Jews are actually under threat. Perhaps the first prize here belongs to Mark Joseph Stern over at Slate, who wrote a piece entitled “I’m a Gay Jew in Trump’s America, and I Fear for My Life.” This article contains such gems as:

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This kind of emotional rhetoric in response to a free and fair election is unbelievable, and beyond that, it’s morally wrong. Trump has never said anything anti-Semitic either publicly, or privately where someone could recall (and you KNOW people would have remembered). The majority of Trump supporters are Conservatives who also support Israel. Aside from internet trolls and a few random individuals, Trump’s campaign hasn’t been “more Anti-Semitic” than any other. Mark isn’t just saying Trump has a problem with Jews, but that so many other Americans do that Trump will be able to overcome government checks and balances and go after the Jewish community.

What a disgusting, bigoted, and unfair way to view your fellow Americans.

It’s time for liberal Jews to stop. We know you are angry that you lost. We know you don’t like Trump, but claiming that America has become anti-Semitic, or that it’s not a friendly country for Jews, is a slap in the face to the country that, besides Israel, has been the best home for Jewish people in thousands of years. Americans have again and again expressed support for Israel, particularly Conservative Christian Americans. America remains largely free of the violent antisemitism sweeping Europe. What’s the problem?

As a postscript, it’s interesting to point out that while Trump reaches out to Israel and works with Jews on a daily basis, the DNC might put anti-Israel Rep. Keith Ellison in charge.

But hey, Bannon said Jewish girls were whiny, so I guess getting stabbed in the back by the DNC is less important… right?

Still for Donald Trump

 

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Yes, I’m still supporting Donald Trump. Of course I am! Nothing’s changed. Sure, plenty of angry Facebook messages, ultimatums. “No more sex/friendship/fantasy football/trivia nights for you!” I just smile and nod. Sure thing, folks.

 

Really though, nothing’s changed.

 

The “new revelations” concerning Trump’s personal behavior aren’t “new” in any real sense. We all knew he behaved this way. Women ask me “Is that REALLY how men talk?” It is, to a point, and it isn’t. Trump’s suggestion that he “grabs” women, perhaps without consent, takes his locker room talk to a cringe-worthy next level. It also changes nothing.

This election will have an impact on the fate of over 300 million Americans. If one truly feels Trump is better for that 300 million, what personal revelations can change the moral calculus? What if he’s a serial killer who has killed five people? Ten people? I’m not sure where we jump off this slippery slope, but we’re not close yet, not even in the ballpark.

The problems associated with globalism and the “Liberal Elite” haven’t changed one bit. Hillary still represents Wall Street excess, foreign policy arrogance and incompetence, a media/government/entertainment complex that seem to hate half of the American population; dying small towns, lack of real jobs, credentialism (needing unnecessary degrees/certifications), racial strife and violence, hateful identity politics. None of this has changed.

Trump’s racist, anti-Semitic, you say? Absolute nonsense. Pathetic, stupid, damaging nonsense. I’ve spent more time in genuine engagement with “anti-Semites” than virtually any Jewish person alive. They don’t like Jews, and they can’t hide it. Trump has spent his life around Jewish people. Every day he has intimate and meaningful interactions with Jews. The same is likely true with Hispanics, Blacks, any group you care to name. Trump, the media-hungry socialite, has led a far more diverse life than anyone reading this essay, and he did so for decades without accusations of “racism”.

Trump gives as a shot at turning back harmful trends. He gives hope to the half of our country that feels alienated, hated by the elite, and under attack. Every single day, our worldview is confirmed. Check out Lena Dunham’s latest “eliminate white people” video, then reflect on the fact that she’s a Clinton surrogate. The media has asked Trump to repudiate David Duke… will Clinton repudiate Dunham?

Liberals seem confused. Attack people based on their race and gender, and they will respond. Tell half the country they don’t belong here, and they will respond. Trump is the response. His personal behavior will never be as grave as the issues facing our country, so for those of us on his side, he’s still the best choice. Get used to it.