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Notes on anti-Semitism Notes on anti-Semitism
by Joseph Gatt
2019-08-16 08:00:09
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You have three anti-Semitism. You have religious anti-Semitism, political anti-Semitism and economic anti-Semitism. Let me break these down for you, briefly.

Religious anti-Semitism

The most popular kind is of course the Islamic kind. But there is some Christian anti-Semitism, and other smaller religions such as the Baha'i and Pentacoastal Churches also use anti-Semitic literature.

antisem01_400You have “primary sources” which are the scriptures that don't always depict Jews in a positive light. You then have “secondary” and “tertiary” sources which are pamphlets written as guidebooks on how to deal with the Jews, how to bully the Jews and how to convert the Jews.

Religious anti-Semitism often depicts the Jews as hard-headed in their refusal to convert to other religions, and are often depicted as “secretive” with all kinds of blood libels and secret plans or conspiracy theories.

So religious anti-Semites often hate Jews for religious purposes, often because they believe Jews are engaging in the wrong religion.

Political anti-Semitism

Now it boils down to politics. Jews are believed to play too much of a role in politics, and are believed to harass people into supporting Jewish causes and Israel. It is believed that Jews form powerful lobbies and that local politicians are not allowed to touch “Jewish causes.”

Now denying that there is something of a Jewish lobby would be lying. Yes there are Jews who try to get help for Jewish causes and for Israel. But it would be a mistake to believe that “all Jews” are involved in these lobbies, or that these lobbies use “Benjamins” as a means of influence. And of course the claim is that those “Benjamins” are used to “crush the Palestinians.” Not to mention all the hoopla about Israel's right to exist. 

Examples of other political lobbies

-Korean lobbies around the world try to push hard for visa waivers, increased Korean business presence, security matters, and a Korean presence in politics, and the appointment of Koreans to key positions.

-Chinese lobbies around the world try to push for preferential treatment of Chinese companies, security matters, favorable treatment of China in the media, and hushing any bad news about China.

-Islamic lobbies push hard for an increased presence in the media (often to proselytize) along with funds to build mosques, an increased presence of Halal food in grocery stores and restaurants, and the right to engage in banned rituals, including slaughtering sheep during the Eid festival in public places or at home.

-Pentacoastal lobbies (Pentacoastal is an umbrella term for “messianic churches” that is Churches whose leader is believed to be the messiah) are pushing hard for their members to be elected members, for favorable treatment in the media, for hushing their strange practices, and for the appointment of Church members to key positions along with funds for their “charities” or other organizations.

So why the Jews gets singled out on this I have no idea. Perhaps religious anti-Semitism has something to do with it.

Economic anti-Semitism

Yes. The old myth that Jews control finance and the media and politics and everything else. Now the truth is, Jews around the world do tend to punch over their weight. They are often less than 1% of the populations they live in, yet in politics, the media or business represent something like 6 or 7% in some cases, such as when it comes to elected officials. I'm speaking roughly here. That's not domination, not even close, but the Jews are somewhat overrepresented compared to the size of their community.

The explanation for this is that the median age for Jewish communities around the world is 35, 40 or 45, and as the saying goes, the older you are, the more likely you are the be in successful positions. You don't see a lot of 20 year-olds elected in politics or working as business execs, but you'll find a lot of 50 year olds in those positions.

So in the US for example, you have Latino or African-American communities whose median age tends to border around 25, which is why you'll find a lot of Latinos and African-Americans in sports or in music. There are Latinos and African-Americans in business, but due to their young median age, they are often underrepresented in business compared to the size of their community.

Other important statistic, for historical reasons, Jews tend to be concentrated in the big cities. Remember that for a very long time Jews were not allowed to own land, were not allowed to be in the agricultural business (exceptions were made for Kosher agriculture and up until the 19th century around 25% Jews worked in agriculture, when for the rest of the population it was 95%). So you won't find many Jews in rural or semi-rural areas. Thus the better access to media, politics or banking or whatever.

Three things. What about all the Jews who work as struggling teachers, factory workers (there are a few) taxi drivers (there are a few, the late Amy Winehouse's father is a taxi driver) or name a profession and you'll find a few Jews.

Second thing, what about other communities that punch over their weight? The Lebanese, the Syrians, the Egyptians, the Koreans, the Bermudans, the Singaporeans, and the Indians to name a few.

Third thing. The Jewish tendency is complete assimilation. This is not a gossip column and I believe people should do what makes them happy, but Groucho Marx, wives not Jewish, Mark Zuckerberg, wife not Jewish, Mayor Bloomberg, wife not Jewish, Secretary Mnuchin, wife not Jewish, and I could go on and on and on. For the anecdote, I am mostly a self-learned Jew. My beloved father and mother were leading their own lives as I was growing up. Now I've met a few people, Jewish parents, who never celebrated a single Jewish holiday. I was chatting with one of those about Jewish holidays and he goes “what's the one with the hamantaschens?” I was like “buddy you never celebrated Purim?” and he was like “what's Purim?” You get the idea.  

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