YDS: The Clare Spark Blog

April 10, 2016

“New York values” (as heard by Iowans?)

new-york-valuesAlthough I have been writing about the subtler forms of antisemitism for years now, it has come as a shock (perhaps) that I suggest that Senator Ted Cruz may have been playing to Midwestern misconceptions about “Jewish” illegitimate power in NYC during this presidential campaign.

This blog does not pretend to know what the (ostentatiously) pro-Israel Cruz “really” meant by his slur, and perhaps I am typically an “oversensitive” Jew in imputing to the Senator views that he does not (consciously) hold. (Perhaps he was thinking of urban crowding in seeking agrarian votes.) But in many subsequent statements, Cruz has claimed to refer to “liberal Democratsor to “pro-abortion” and “gay marriage” elements or to those who inhabit finance (“money”) and “media.” (On the “pro-abortion slur see https://clarespark.com/2016/04/01/70s-feminism-and-its-bizarre-legacy/.)

Some opponents to my suspicions have pointed to Cruz’s pro-Israel stance as proof that he can’t also harbor antisemitic sentiments, and indeed some journalists have promoted “the new antisemitism” to emphasize the overlapping of antisemitic and pro-“Palestinian” sentiments. (For more on this, see https://clarespark.com/2015/01/15/antisemitism-vs-anti-zionism-is-there-a-difference/.)

Have we all forgotten that liberals are supposed by elements of “the Right” to be masked “commie Jews” and traitors, such as Julius and Ethel Rosenberg? (See https://clarespark.com/2015/04/24/multiculturalism-vs-yid-red-spies-which-agitates-the-right/.) Or that “Wall Street” (in the imagination of populists in general) is held to be generically “Jewish.” Or that “gay marriage” presupposes feminization of one or both partners, and indeed, its passage in NY State was a struggle that was narrowly won? Or that “pro-abortion” views are very close to the blood libel, a long standing accusation leveled against Jews by medieval Christians?

For my umpteen blogs on “the Jewish question” see https://clarespark.com/2012/09/29/index-to-blogs-on-antisemitism/. I will be adding this one to the list, which I commend highly as the product of all my research since 1986 when I was first alerted to the pervasiveness of this so-called “prejudice,” which is more accurately understood as a theory of history.

Saudi cartoon 2008

Saudi cartoon 2008

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2 Comments »

  1. Hmmm Clare, that’s a tough one. While I don’t claim to read Cruz’s mind, it is possible that, as a religious Christian, he differentiates between traditional Jews and assimilated Jews. The former would be the holders of “NY values” equated with “temple money changers” whom Jesus chastised. The latter would be plebeian Jews worthy of redemption. Remember Cruz was seen taking part in matza baking with traditional Jews. The message could be:
    “I am a friend of the Jews and Israel so as long as they don’t abandon their ancestral heritage and become greedy mercantilists”

    Comment by Maimon Chocron — April 11, 2016 @ 5:19 pm | Reply

  2. I think it is interesting that in the USA, when the far right wants to excuse its anti-Semitism, it points to the only case it seems to be able to find — the Rosenbergs. One case out of a 3000 year history in which Jews tended, percentage wise to be more pro-USA than any other ethnic group in North America. But on the left, they don’t try to excuse their anti-Semitism. They simply deny it’s existence while they make very clear that one is an acceptable Jew only if one conforms to all left wing radical beliefs and has essentially abandoned any Jewish practices that might differentiate them.

    Comment by Roger Froikin — April 10, 2016 @ 7:05 pm | Reply


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