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

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He has said that “the Jews thought they had a monopoly of God: Jesus was angry that they could shut out other human beings.” He has said that Jews have been “fighting against” and being “opposed to” his God. He has “compared the features of the ancient Holy Temple in Jerusalem to the features of the apartheid system in South Africa.” He has complained that “the Jewish people with their traditions, religion and long history of persecution sometimes appear to have caused a refugee problem among others.”  Tutu has minimized the suffering of those murdered in the Holocaust by asserting that “the gas chambers” made for “a neater death” than did Apartheid.  He has complained of “the Jewish Monopoly of the Holocaust,” and has demanded that its victims must “forgive the Nazis for the Holocaust,” while refusing to forgive the “Jewish people” for “persecute[ing] others.”

He has complained that Americans “are scared…to say wrong is wrong because the Jewish lobby is powerful—very powerful.” He has accused Jews—not Israelis—of exhibiting “an arrogance—the arrogance of power because Jews are a powerful lobby in this land and all kinds of people woo their support.”

Tutu has acknowledged having been frequently accused of being anti-Semitic,” to which he has offered two responses: “Tough luck;” and “my dentist’s name is Dr. Cohen.” Former President Jimmy Carter too has contributed to this new legitimization of Jew-bashing, by echoing Tutu’s derisive talk about the Jewish domination of America (“powerful political, economic and religious forces…that dominate our media”) and his use of the term “Apartheid” in his book about Israel.

By thus blurring the line between legitimate political criticism and illegitimate bigotry, widely admired people like Tutu and Carter tend to legitimate the kind of anti-Semitic attitudes that manifest themselves in the rants of celebrities like Galliano, Sheen, Gibson and others. (Among other prominent people who have legitimated anti Semitism by blurring the line between legitimate criticism of Israeli policies and attacks against the Jewish people have been Helen Thomas, Patrick Buchanan, and former senator James Abourezk.)

This blurring has also affected the tone on university campuses around the world, where Tutu and Carter are particularly admired and imitated. I speak on campuses throughout the world and I had never, until recently, heard and seen the kind of language now being directed against Jewish students and faculty who support Israel.

So I was not as surprised as some by the recent celebrity rants.  The oldest prejudice has never quite disappeared.  It just went underground and has now resurfaced as a result of new technology and new legitimization by the likes of Bishop Tutu and Jimmy Carter.

Fortunately there are intelligent and principled young celebrities like Natalie Portman who are trying to offset this development by speaking out against bigotry.

Alan Dershowitz’s latest novel is The Trials of Zion.


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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.