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On the Matter of defining “Jewish”

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on February 14, 2009


Silly Old Bear, may I ask what defines you as a Jew? I believe there is a certain amount of dissension as to whether your heritage is carried via the mother or the father or both. Can a proselyte become a Jew? I am in no way anti-semetic but isn’t the Jewish faith and/or race as exclusive as any religion – perhaps more so?

“I am in no way…anti-semitic….but…” That’s what they all say. When you read or hear “I am not….but” you know, it’s a dead give-away that there’s something treif (non-kosher) about that person’s thought process. Non-Jewish people who wish to define Jewishness wish to do so because they want to profile someone.

This guy is not interested in the answers to his question – if he really was, he could just as well Wikipedia the answer – Who is a Jew? – No, he just has to target the only openly Jewish guy in the discussion and demand answers to insensire question – question born out of his antisemitism

About two years ago I wrote this:

“The Jews control the media…”

“The Jews control the diamond trade…”

“The Jews created those Muhammad cartoons…”

“The Jews control the world’s banks…”

“The Jews controlled the Slave trade…”

“The Jews cause the Black Plague…”

“The Jews control the UN…”

“The Jews control the movie industry…”

“The Jews…”

Why is defining someone as “Jewish” important? What does someone being Jewish have to do with the media, the diamond trade, the Muhammad Cartoons, the Slave Trade, the Black Plague, the UN, the movie industry?

Why is that all other peoples in the world are defined as the country they live in, but a resident of Sweden or America or any other country, who also happens to be Jewish, is defined as “Jewish”?

One guy actually came in and responded to the question with “to show bias” – and probably thought that he was only saying that he wants to show the “Jewish bias” – well, it turns out that he also shows his own bias – against anything “Jewish” – and so does anyone insisting on defining things as Jewish, where “Jewish” is completely irrelevant.

SoB

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3 Responses to “On the Matter of defining “Jewish””

  1. James Hovland said

    Hi Silly,

    It’s been a while, and as much as I have wanted to talk with you, I have been avoiding it because of the level of emotions that surrounds our issues at this time. I remember defending you as being more pro-Palestinian that the people who were attacking you as a “Zionist”. So I know very well that things are not always the way people perceive them to be. I’ve been addressing another side of the antisemitism issue lately, and had an experience that I think you should add into that collection of knowledge which shapes your perceptions.

    I was commenting on Zionism, and over several post made sure that I separated who specifically I was talking about from the Jewish people. The reply I received and wanted to point out, went something like this…

    “the Jews, or Zionists as you call them…”

    What I want you to see here, is that the commenter was trying to tie all the Jewish people into the accusations I had made toward the Zionists, and then, by his efforts to do so, accuse me of “antisemitism”. The basic point I am at now, is that if criticism of Israel or Zionism is to be defined as “antisemitism”, either directly, or indirectly, then antisemitism becomes legitimate and more of an issue of politics than racism.

    I’d like to hear your thoughts on this.

    Like

  2. Hiya James!

    “if criticism of Israel or Zionism is to be defined as “antisemitism”, either directly, or indirectly, then antisemitism becomes legitimate and more of an issue of politics than racism.”

    The problem is that LEGITIMATE criticism of Israel or Zionism shouldn’t be defined as antisemitism, and I don’t think I have ever claimed that it should be. What should be defined as antisemitism, because it is, is equating “the Jews” with the State of Israel and her actions and Zionism beyond the right of Israel to exist, or more specifically anything that goes beyond the Israelis’ right to self-determination within International Agreements, such as the 1947 partition plan – (just as your commenter did…).

    Here’s a link for you on the matter of criticizing Israel that should clear up the issue.

    I wrote that after an especially difficult and violent bout with the Radical Left Anti-Semites in Human Rights Network, in an attempt to show that one may naturally criticize Israel, when there is a legitimate reason to do so.

    That they kill civilians in their war with Palestinian Militants is not such a reason, that they hinder the Red Cross from entering f.i Gaza is such a reason – the former is not a violation of international law, while the latter is. It is not legitimate criticism to claim that Israel is running a Nazi concentration camp in Gaza. At this moment in time it is not even legitimate to criticize Israel for their war in Gaza, because military action against an aggressor, in this case Hamas (the democratically elected Palestinian government, actually) in Gaza, is not illegal when one is not occupying the territory of that aggressor, and Israel ended their occupation of Gaza in 2005. Military action (except defense fire) is illegal only when on occupied territory.

    It is not a violation of International laws to refuse to supply another nation or government with food, water, electricity and medical supplies at any time, and it is not a violation of international law to target military installations, weapons or ammunition within an aggressor state or territory. It is not even a violation of International laws to so even if there happen to be civilians in the vicinity, if precautions to warn the civilians before the attack has been taken.

    It is a violation of international law to STOP aid from entering Gaza, but they have no obligation to provide it. (still during the entire latest conflict in Gaza, Israel kept providing aid in the form of food, water, medical supplies and electricity)

    Now that Gaza is no longer occupied, Israel has absolutely no obligations towards the Gazans. They don’t even have to negotiate with them!

    What Israel can be criticized for is the existing settlements on the West Bank, what military installations they have there, but not the roadblocks per se, the 2 % of the security wall that actually is on Palestinian Territory and the lack of consideration for Palestinian needs, such as access to medical facilities, their farm lands and workplaces, protection against attacks from the Settlers and Palestinian Militants. They can also be criticized for not allowing Palestinians free movement in and out of Palestine (they do not however have any obligation to permit the Palestinians to enter Israel) But that’s it. ANYTHING ELSE, beyond that is illegitimate criticism and, because of the nature of Israel as a Jewish State, is antisemitism.

    SoB

    Like

  3. James Hovland said

    I have to disagree with you on what you define as legitimate to criticize. Just because something is legal doesn’t mean it’s smart, or consistent with acceptable goals. Furthermore, I think investigations are required in order to determine exactly how legal their actions were. I’m just not ready to grant you the authority to be judge and jury on that, and serious allegations have been made. So, at that, I’m basically dismissing your entire legal argument against legitimate criticism.

    To say that criticism of a small group or individual is antisemitism is a false claim that causes undue pain to Jewish people. War draws a ton of criticism, it’s not criticism of Jews, it’s opposition to war, and it is absolutely unfair to the Jewish people to claim that all of the criticism is against them for being Jewish. That is flat deceptive and detrimental to any hope they have of feeling welcome in the world. To protect Israel or Zionism from criticism at the expense of all the Jewish people’s feelings of acceptance is wrong. I don’t know how you can not see this.

    Like

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