Why Are So Many Public Figures Ranting Against “The Jews”?

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When celebrities are drunk, on drugs or just high on their own egos, they often engage in rants.  These days many such rants are captured on cell phone videos or audio tapes and go viral on the internet.  Nothing surprising there. What is surprising to many is that the rant de jour these days seems to be directed against Jews.

Consider the former Dior designer, John Galliano, who was sitting in a bar in a Jewish section of Paris and announcing his love for Hitler and smiling as he told the people at an adjoining table, who he apparently assumed to be Jewish, that “People like you would be dead. Your mothers, your forefathers, would all be f—– gassed.”

Or consider Charlie Sheen who claims to be high on Charlie Sheen, attacking his producer by emphasizing the Jewish nature of his original name, Chaim Levine.

Or Oliver Stone telling an interviewer last year that too much attention is paid to the Holocaust because of “Jewish domination of the media.”  And that Hitler wasn’t all that terrible to the Jews.

Then there is the Reverend Louis Farrakhan, ranting and raving about Satanic Jews controlling the world.

This is not an entirely new phenomenon.  Mel Gibson delivered a similar rant when he was stopped by Los Angeles police in 2006.  “F*****g Jews… The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world.” Gibson then asked the deputy, “Are you a Jew?”

Generally, sobriety results in apology, but the damage has been done.

The question is why the Jews?  There’s an old joke about a Nazi rally in Nuremberg where Hitler is screaming, “Who causes all of Germany’s problems?”  An old man in the crowd shouts back, “the bicycle riders.”  Hitler’s taken by surprise and asks, “why the bicycle riders?”  To which the old man replies, “why the Jews?”  That was the 1930s.  But “why the Jews” in the second decade of the 21st Century?

Let me suggest two possible answers.  The first is that little about the nature of prejudice has really changed, but the advent of the age of high technology has brought private prejudices into the public arena.  In commenting on the Galliano outburst, Michael Goubert, a French DJ and music designer, observed that “virulent views like those expressed by [Galliano] are not rare.”  But “the public expression” of intolerance is unusual and particularly troubling, according to patrons of the bar in which Galliano expressed his bigoted views.  The pervasiveness of cell phone videos and the widespread use of the social media have blurred the line between private and public expression.  What used to be only whispered to friends at a bar is now broadcast around the world.

There is a second, a far more troubling answer to “Why the Jews?”  Prominent public figures have blurred another line as well—the line between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, between attacking the Jewish state and attacking the Jewish people.  Consider widely publicized remarks made by Bishop Desmond Tutu, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize and the American Model of Freedom, and a man openly admired and praised by President Obama.  He has called the Jews “a peculiar people” and has accused “the Jews” of causing many of the world’s problems.  He has railed against “the Jewish Lobby,” comparing its power to that of Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin.

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  • Ghostwriter

    I don't know why this exists. I've had a couple of encounters with Jewish people in the past and they were positive. Why are there people saying such garbage?

  • Don

    American democracy has created its own side-effect, namely, celebrity worship as its primary religion. Just look at the crowds at sports events, or their TV audiences. Look at the countless music worshipers who actually listen to the words in rap on their ear plugs, cars, or TV shows. Then look at the movie and TV stars that have become idols of worship. What it really takes to be a leader today is a fearlessness in front of crowds, along with an ability to dribble, dance, sing, or read words while wearing a costume, with the camera rolling. The only literary skill required to lead today's youth is the ability to sign their autograph while smiling.

    So the most ephemeral and shallow aspects of society, usually entertainment, has been promoted into our latest philosophical ideals by our instant media industries, TV, movies, facebook, blogs, and tweeters. It's our mindless media that makes any celebrity's words magnified beyond trivial opinions. When our adolescent celebrity worship is needed to feed commercial lobotomizing airwave technology, we are chasing our tail. And when drunks, druggies and wealthy spoiled dopes rant about Jews, Jews have another reason to feel proud: at least they are not one of those.

    • Monty Lasovsky

      Well said Don!
      Your astute analysis of the current wave of antisemitism is being better understood when people notice from whence the antisemitic rantings come.
      I believe their is a trend out there that is starting to reject these rantings, however small, and that a serious analysis is being made of the sources of outspoken antisemitism.
      The ancient 'scapegoat" theory will continue to apply to the Jewish people and will never disappear entirely, especially when you have the rantings of the so-called "elders" who for reasons that escape me, are acceptable to people because of who these people are and no notice is taken of their own questionable backgrounds or behavior. I'm a lot more optimistic now than i have been The real threat of course comes form the Islamic Jihad mentality which at present, is preoccupied by it's own collapse due to the rejection by it of democratic principles which they don't really understand and are never likely to adopt. A very noticeable swing to the right in parts of Europe is encouraging in this regard.

  • Margie

    I ignore television, don't have one and wouldn't want it, and this is precisely why.
    I don't have to look at or hear these mentally disturbed morons. In their world it's cool to hate whoever they choose to hate for whatever warped reasons they have up there in their warped minds.
    Sin is the reason why. Prejudice is of the flesh. Only God can change a heart.

  • writerschronicle

    Anti-Zionism is intellectually chic allowing for the festering of antisemitism to be worn seamlessly. Its a one size fits all.

  • GKC

    I'm surprised a troll hasn't interjected yet. Maybe they are all too busy with PBS, Peter King, and Wisconsin and are spewing elsewhere.

  • waterwillows

    Why the ranting against Jews? Public figures or private figures, I believe the cause to be about the same. It is the Lord, His Authority, His Wisdom they are in rebellion against.
    For sure Jews do bear the brunt of it, with the typical sneer of 'chosen' people. And those who sneer the most and the loudest, have little understanding of just what chosen is or why.
    Their hatred is born in blind selfishness and a determined willfulness against laws, decisions and rule from the Throne. To beat down the Jew is to get rid of the law and any restraints on one's chosen 'freedom'.
    Their so called 'freedom' is vile and ugly. And so are their words. Like unto a beast.

  • sonofholocaust

    Perhaps their antisemitism is of the variety that Hilter pushed. "We are barbarians and want to be Barbarians" he once said. Why? becuase he saw Judeo Christian mores as preventing the German people from reaching their true potential… that of the master race. In order to have the
    people accept, if not complicit in the murder of millions of people, he needed to destroy those
    values which were an impediment. Destroy the Jews as a people. Then destroy Christianity as a religion.