Antisemitism Is Harder to Recognize Than Racism.

America’s “call-out” culture has seemingly had a very easy time identifying racism, but a much more difficult time seeing antisemitism.

Consider a new potential cast member for Saturday Night Light, Shane Gillis, who was found to have made off-color comments in the past. He was terminated this week before his first day on the job and the media was clear that his racist jokes were the cause:

The list goes on.

Every headline made it clear that Gillis made racist remarks. They were not “perceived as racist,” “allegedly racist” or people “claimed they were racist” or “objected to the comments.” For the racist jokes – meant for amusement, not malice – the media was definite in calling it out without condition.

But the same cannot be said of antisemitism.

The founders of the Women’s March repeatedly smeared Zionism and said that Jews who back the Jewish State are sinister. The female founders stated that they were proud of their association with the vocal antisemitic preacher Louis Farrakhan. No matter. In commenting about three of the four founders stepping down from their post this week because of their comments and associations, the media made their comments very conditional:

Carmen Perez, Bob Bland, Tamika D. Mallory, and Linda Sarsour attend the TIME 100 Gala on April 25, 2017, in New York. credit: The Bomani Study

For the media, the antisemitism was not so clear. The women were simply accused of antisemitism, but did not necessarily say anything antisemitic. Even while the intent of the women was to vilify, demonize and dehumanize, the media opted to bracket and condition the antisemitism, while doing nothing similar for Gillis’s racist jokes which were meant to entertain.

Even the most clearly vile and noxious antisemitism spewed from the mouth of the leader of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan, got a pass from the press.

Shane Gillis also denied that he’s a racist and was just trying to be funny, but his protest did not make it into the headlines.

When the anti-male and anti-White comments by New York Times Asian female columnist Sarah Jeong came to light including “White men are bullshit,” “#CancelWhitePeople,” “white people marking up the internet with their opinions like dogs pissing on fire hydrants” and “Oh man it’s kind of sick how much joy I get out of being cruel to old white men,” the Times pardoned her comments and let her remain on staff.

So we are left to question the disparity.

Is the source of the comment the differentiator? Are the racist comments from white men perceived as worse than those coming from women or minorities?

Consider a leading white male politician in the United Kingdom who has made antisemitic and anti-Israel comments as matter of ritual. The antisemitism in the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn has become so intense, that many Jews have left the party and the parliament itself. Still, the press conditioned the accusations against the Corbyn and the party:

This liberal white male was given the soft-touch by the media.

He was not alone.

When acting-President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas said that Jews were slaughtered in the Holocaust because of their behavior, and that Europeans have hated Jews for centuries because of their “function,” the press was tepid in labeling his outrageous statements as anti-Semitic.

The media is uniquely adept at clearly identifying and calling out racist speech while it contorts itself around antisemitism, noting that some people (you know who those pesky critters are, the media keeps telling you they’re racists) might possibly consider certain comments as problematic and allege antisemitism. Such manipulations makes room for the hatred and gives it air.

That action itself is antisemitic as well.

………

Published at FirstOneThrough

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One comment

  1. Good article. Thanks.

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