Sunday, October 28, 2018

Democrats and Jews

Michael Lumish

{Also published at Jews Down Under and the Elder of Ziyon.}

The Democratic Party is sabotaging its Jewish constituency and, thereby, in some measure, punching itself in the face.

It has put American Jews -- who are traditionally among the most loyal Democrats  -- into the position of having to choose between a political party and our own families... our own people.

In 2008, I was part of the 80 percent of the American Jewish population who voted for Barack Obama. In 2012, I was not part of the 70 percent who did so. The main reason that I refused to vote for Obama in his second run for office was because I deeply resented his insistence that he had every right to tell Jews where we may, or may not, be allowed to live on our own ancestral homeland.

Despite the fact that President Trump is more supportive toward Israel than any president since Harry Truman, recent polling data shows that only 6 percent of American Jews are likely to vote for him for the 2020 presidency. This is despite the fact that Trump moved the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. It is despite the fact that he is defunding the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) which literally teaches little "Palestinian" Arab kids to violently despise Jews. And it is despite the fact that Trump opposes Obama's "Iran deal" which assures a Persian bomb in what is now the short term.

My intention is not to make a broad argument for Donald Trump, nor is it to erect an argument for either the conservative movement or the Republican Party.

In fact, I am not mounting an argument at all. I am merely asking a question. It is this:

Why is it that of all the minority constituencies of the Democratic Party only the Jewish minority is thought to be morally obligated to sacrifice the well-being of their own children in deference to that party and in deference to progressive-left ideology?

The answer to that question has two interrelated parts.

The first is in the rise of democratic socialism on the coattails of Bernie Sanders. The second is in the rise of "intersectionality theory" within the universities and among the activists.

Democratic socialists such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Linda Sarsour are increasingly coming into prominence. These young up-and-comers tend to be friendly with the likes of racist Louis Farrakhan, much like some of their seniors in the party, and generally favor the hostile Arab majority against the Jewish minority in the Middle East.

They also tend to favor "intersectionality theory."

The fundamental idea behind "intersectionality" in practice is that the world is comprised of the oppressors and their oppressed. Thus the oppressed must join together in opposition to the oppressors who persecute them through "White Male Privilege" and cold, hard cash. They are presented as oppressed in a common fashion grounded in "white" imperial racism and various forms of gender-hate. It is for this reason that they connect Ferguson, Missouri to "Palestine" because they see their concerns about both as derived from the same malicious source... you.

Furthermore, intersectionality has created a loose hierarchy of oppression with Arab men, strangely enough, at the top. Arabs and Muslims and "people of color" and Gay people and transgender people and Black people are near the summit of the hierarchy.  White women have actually dropped a few rungs in recent years, presumably due to their unfortunate association with white men.

The oppressors are generally understood to be white people, the wealthy, and "Zionists." Much of the American-left considers the Jewish people to be all three. I like to say that we have hit the politically-incorrect trifecta!

{Good for us.}

But this leaves those American Jews who care about their brothers and sisters in the State of Israel in a serious political dilemma. Those of you who are American Jewish Democrats or "progressives" are essentially being told that you need to choose between the Jewish people and the Democratic Party and the political ideology that drives it. On the campuses, if Jewish students dare to stand up for themselves and their people, they are shouted down as Nazis and shunned by many of their peers.

The irony is that those doing the yelling and screaming like to think of themselves as the ideological children of Martin Luther King, Jr. who's foremost message was that we should judge people as individuals, not as representatives of an ethnicity or gender. Thus what we are witnessing in the rise of progressive-left intersectionality is an ironic insistence that the Jewish people cease to defend themselves in Israel out of moral consideration for minority groups. And, furthermore, we are to do so based on a blatantly hypocritical political ideology that has given up its fundamental liberal core as represented by Martin Luther King, Jr.

So, why not vote Republican?

At least it may teach the Democrats not to take the Jews for granted.


  1. You want to align yourself with (white) nationalists because they limit their hatred and bigotry to Muslims, blacks and browns... Oh wait, they hate Jews, too. And I'm glad that you trust Putin with Israel's future since Trump has ceded Syria to Russia and Iran. And I know that Obama didn't do enough about Syria, but that was primarily because he couldn't get the Republican congress to give him authority to do anything. And really, you should wait for Trump's peace plan for Israel which he said would be very much liked by the Palestinians since it was their turn to get something as Israel got the embassy move.

    1. "You want to align yourself with (white) nationalists because they limit their hatred and bigotry to Muslims, blacks and browns"

      Can you stop yourself from being a total schmuck for 2 seconds?

    2. Take your blinders off and pay attention to what's going on. When Trump says he is a "nationalist" his base hears "white nationalism" and if you don't understand that, you are either willfully ignorant or just plain ignorant.

    3. Yes, Joseph. A lot of blacks and browns, and Muslims hate Jews too.

      Everyone here, and I mean EVERYONE, left, right, and center, knows more than you do and treats the problem of antisemitism far more seriously. You are the class clown, an arrogant and condescending apparatchik.

    4. Because it was a black, brown Muslim who murdered Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue, oh wait it was a nationalist who hates blacks, browns, Muslims and Jews. Just like the rest of the (white) nationalists. If you're really concerned about anti-semitism, then you are worried about the dehumanization of other people. Calling migrants "vermin" who will "infest" our country is outrageous and should be condemned by every moral person. In fact, referring to any group as less that human is abhorrent.

    5. Wait. Is this the Joseph who doesn't know that the President, and not the congress is in charge of foreign policy?

      Dehumanize people? Like you do? Yes, I worry about that, and it's why, unlike you, I don't do it.
      But let's be clear. This is what you do. You are divisive.

    6. Break out the boilerplate.

      This is not about migrants, but people that call Jews termites, and those that hang with such people.

      We all know how prim and proper progressives are when they speak of others.

    7. Ocasio-Cortez, and Sarsour support intersectionality for the obvious reason that it is the only that either could grab power. The former hasn't got a clue about Israel, and the latter is a walking talking clue of something quite unsavory.

    8. joseph, go away you Communist!

      Sadly, some, like the Peter Beinart, and many others on the left, are already trying to use Pittsburgh as a way to push a narrative that some are engaging in a "hate them, not us" tactic, and thus as a way too poo-poo anti-Semitic attacks with Islam-inspired pretexts. It's also being used as a way to manipulate people to only look at anti-Semitism from a left-wing perspective, which sadly happens to mean "only fully condemn without qualification of a white non-Muslim does it."

      What happened in Pittsburgh is an attack on the entire Jewish Nation, and the deadliest attack on American Jewry in this country's history. I'm a believer in capital punishment for particularly or uniquely heinous crimes. This meets the criteria. We must fight neo-Nazism, which is rarely seen in immigrant populations, and thus lacks direction action we can take to keep them out of the country in the first place. However, that does not cancel out that Europe, which has been importing Islamic immigration, has seen dozens of violent and deadly attacks on Jews, whose perps sought death tolls as high as possible, and whose tolls already have exceeded what happened in Pittsburgh. We can literally see anti-Semitism of a large portion of Muslims coming long before they arrive.

      The fact remains that it makes sense to take direct action where we can to prevent anti-Semitism. There is no reason what occurred yesterday negates or eliminates the reason to focus on the easiest way to stop it: keep whichever anti-Semites we can out of this country. If we coulda kept Bowers out, I woulda supported. I think we all would've.

    9. "I'm glad that you trust Putin with Israel's future..."

      Putin? Really?

      Joseph, I am certain that you are both an intelligent and well-meaning guy, but how you go from anything that I have written above to Vladimir Putin is beyond me.

    10. Words of wisdom:

  2. Mike, that 6% I think you misconstrued; Trump is not going from 21% Jewish support in 2016 to 6% in 2020; that 6% is number of potential Hillary-to-Trump voters.

    That being said, a lot of the plantation mentality of Democrat-voting American Jews is because def in part because Reform Judaism encourages "cultural Judaism," and treats the religious part as an afterthought. Also, there is too much "Jews of no religion," to whom being Jewish is just a marker of minority, and so to them, asserting that is to be "in solidarity" with others.

    1. Ashish, thank you for that correction on the percentages. I have to say, at this point, I want Trump to do better among Jews because I think that he deserves it.

  3. Jews in America that identify as progressive are rightly more worried about neo-nazis because fellow progressives see the other types of Jew haters as aligned in a larger movement.

    Jews outside America, and those with open eyes, know where the larger threat lies, and it's not from people like Bowers, despicable though he is and what he represents.

    1. This is a tough one.

      I have been arguing -- along with yourself -- that the major threat, at this moment in history, does not come from the Right but from the Left and now there is Pittsburgh.

    2. Assuming of course you place the people in the same buckets. I don't I don't consider Nazis to be a left vs right thing.

    3. I don't really find it that tough, at least for now, because we have always known about this kind of man. As for the carnage, it reminds me more of other recent mass shootings, i.e., Las Vegas, Sandy Hook, etc., only this time it was an antisemitic nut case. Grotesque. But in which major political party are his fantasies mainstream? I am always wary of right wing antisemitism making a comeback, but this really doesn't seem like IT.
      Trying to tie it to Trump, or Republicans for that matter, rings the bell on my bullshit meter, i.e., a more mainstream conspiracy theory. And it still strikes me that the Left is trying to use racism as a club with which to attain power. So, in spite of this truly heinous act, I still believe the greater threat to the long term safety of Jews is coming from the Left and the Democratic Party.
      The demonization and delegitimization of Israel is the key ingredient. And it helps along all the usual historic conspiracy fantasies that the Bowers and others feed on.
      We know this is true.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. This attack was a targeting of a group that is easy to see, based on delusion and hate. Like the SC church killings. The others, while dastardly, who knows why? That's not to say there is no overlap in these episodes. The infamy if nothing else.

      Progressive fear of neo-nazis has some level of authenticity. They are most hated by neo-nazis, particularly progressive Jews. The fear allows these Jews to pretend that Jew hatred among other progressives, not to mention illiberal and regressive intersectionalists, is not in short supply. The antisemitism is increasingly in the open among progressive leaders and run of the mill activist BDS types. Perhaps it would be too hard to face reality and acknowledge that the Red-Green alliance has far more sway than neo-nazis when it comes to Jewish welfare. Rather than alienate or sway from a higher religion, usually insulated from real harm (at least for the present), they simply look the other way.

  4. When the pogrom comes for the josephs in this county I won't say they're on their own but I'm not moving them to the head of the line either. I get it, really I do, you'd rather sing song of race hatred with the Nation of Islam, the Nazis, the communists and furthest fringes of the far left if you think you can tweak the presidents nose.

    I get it. I've seen it. Back in 2003 I watch "Rabbi" Michael Lerner of the self professed "Tikun" organization get on stage with ANSWER, the American Nazi Party, CAIR and an pro Taliban group to protest the war in Iraq. They physically threw him off the stage and he kept climbing back up there and they kept tossing him off. They kept screaming KIKE and him and telling him to die in the ovens. They kept at it and he kept trying to get up there with them.

    At some point you have to ask yourself if you're fighting the 'good fight' or you're just another collaborator.

    1. Lerner thinks it's all a misunderstanding amongst people of goodwill. He did a lot of acid back in the day.

  5. I did get a wry chuckle today when a snowflake I met was railing about Trump saying that an armed presence at the Pittsburgh shul could have prevented it she rolled her eyes and and told me that guns have never protected anyone least of all at a shul. I pointed out that all the shuls here have a police presence and one of them has a permanent police presence she seemed baffled or upset by that. All vigils in the world are fine, after the fact, if it keeps us from panicking, In the words of Dr Rick Sanchez ‘that’s a great state of mind in the animals we eat, but I’m not a cow’. All the well wishing and interfaith take back the night horseshit isn’t going to save anyone. 


    This is a flat out call for a pogrom against the Jews.

    1. One of the problems here as I see it is a lack of education. None of these partisan nincompoops seems to have a clue about antisemitism and how it actually works. Certainly not the author of that awful polemic of incitement against his brothers. Not if he actually cared anything about Jews.

    2. After 25 years in Jewish education I can tell you we've presented all the education anyone would need to draw a rational conclusion. The left hates Jews and Jewish antisemitism is mainstream.