Having read Hitler’s biography and various historiographies on anti-Semitism and racism in general, I have come to the conclusion that there is no more offensive phrase to me than “The Jews”. Enemies of Jewish people everywhere lump in some set of characteristics attributable to The Jews. There are no individuals, just The Jews. And what of them? They are overeducated, over-represented in the professions, overly liberal, hate work that gets the fingernails dirty, hate the military, love big words and complicated reasons. Responsible for the mess we find ourselves in right now.
You can find this rationalization for this stereotyping of Jewish people in tracts like Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf. You can also find it in the article recently written by Commentary‘s Jennifer Rubin, “Why Jews Hate Palin”, in order to get at the [incomprehensible] reasons why most Jews retch in disgust at the sight of Sarah Palin.
Yes, I am serious: I am equating an article in Commentary with Mein Kampf. I am left with little choice after passages like this:
Palin calls herself a “hockey mom” and brags aloud about the athletic prowess of her children, while Jews are more likely to sport “My child Is an Honor Student” bumper stickers. Palin’s oldest, Track, has joined the military, while many Jews lack a family military tradition.
Pro-life Americans saw Palin’s son Trig, born with Down syndrome in April 2008, as an affirmation of Palin’s deeply held beliefs, a rare instance in which a politician did more than mouth platitudes about a “culture of life.” But in affluent communities with large Jewish populations, Down-syndrome children are now largely absent due to the widespread use of diagnostic testing and “genetics counseling.” Trig was not a selling point with many Jewish women who couldn’t imagine making a similar choice—indeed, many have, in fact, made the opposite one.
For those for whom an Ivy League education is the essential calling card for leadership of any sort, an elite-bashing populist with a journalism degree from the University of Idaho who lacks both a mellifluous grasp of policy and a self-consciously erudite vocabulary was always going to be a hard sell. As Continetti observes with savage irony, “The American meritocratic elite places a high priority on verbal felicity and the attitudes, practices and jargon that one picks up during graduate seminars in nonprofit management, government accounting and the semiotics of Percy Shelley’s ‘To a Skylark.’” Given that Jews are overrepresented in these sorts of professions, it is not surprising that they would be among those most put off by Palin.
Jews…are swayed by the notion that the presidency is a knowledge-based position requiring a background in the examination of detailed data and sophisticated analysis. They assume that such knowledge is the special preserve of a certain type of credentialed thinker (the better the university, the more unquestioned the credential) and that possessing this knowledge is the key to a successful presidency…The argument that such knowledge might be acquired or accessed when necessary by a person who has demonstrated a more instinctual skill set—the capacity to make decisions and to lead people—does not resonate with those for whom intellectual rigor has been a defining characteristic and a pathway to success.
The mind reels. I have never in my life read a more obvious instance of Jewish self-hatred than the one on display within the pages of Commentary, a magazine more recently known for placing that epithet on anyone that disagrees with its concepts. Let me see if I can summarize Rubin’s view of the great majority of her co-religionists:
On that last point. Does Rubin have children? Has she ever had a Tay-Sachs test? Would she knowingly bring a Tay-Sachs baby into the world? Would Sarah Palin? And as far as Downs babies are concerned, we have Jewish friends that have kept theirs: Shalom Lowell is now 26 years old and is, from what I understand, a happy young man.
Commentary is no longer of any use as an intelligent forum for American Jewish issues, as it once was. They are a right-wing Republican vessel, taking sides with whoever has the most maximalist Israel policy, at all costs. They can gai kaken so far as I can care.