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Thread: Is Ilhan Omar an Anti-Semite?

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    Is Ilhan Omar an Anti-Semite?

    Are her claims that Israel is purchasing ďallegiance to a foreign countryĒ simply another in a long history of divided-loyalty accusations made over the course of our history? Or should they be otherwise considered?

    We have never been a people united by a common ancestry, so there have always been claims about Catholics or Muslims or people from countries we may be currently hostile to as fifth columnists. Itís certainly a cheap shot that has been resorted to time and again. And accusing people we disagree with as being in the pay of some nefarious party like the Koch brothers or international bankers or foreign powers is a low-effort expedient for the intellectually lazy.

    But does it rise to the level of bigotry, or is it a genuinely held or politically convenient belief? The Democrats have a bit of a conundrum to deal with. Give her the treatment the GOP gave Mr. King, or just issue a general bigotry-is-bad statement and hope it blows over? Or take her seriously and demand hearings and investigations? Or go on the offensive, and treat criticism of Ms. Omar as itís own form of prejudice?

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Interesting that you bring this up because just the other day I read this opinion piece on the topic by an American Jew who believes that it's not bigotry to be against America's policies towards the state of Israel. I think she makes good points and helps to point out the difference between criticizing "foreign" people and foreign policies.

    https://www.truthdig.com/articles/wh...ly-looks-like/
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    Quote Originally Posted by catherine View Post
    Interesting that you bring this up because just the other day I read this opinion piece on the topic by an American Jew who believes that it's not bigotry to be against America's policies towards the state of Israel. I think she makes good points and helps to point out the difference between criticizing "foreign" people and foreign policies.

    https://www.truthdig.com/articles/wh...ly-looks-like/
    Oh, I think she goes beyond criticizing another countryís policies when she accuses those who donít share her opinions as hypnotized or bought off.

    But when she impugns their motives like that, it isnít necessarily out of anti-semitism. It could simply be the usual ad hominem nastiness people resort to when they canít come up with a better argument. I donít see her as Hitler in a hijab. I see her as just another hack. In this era of identity politics we spend too much effort trying to associate behaviors with group characteristics. We fail to acknowledge how individualistic stupidity and mendacity can be.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LDAHL View Post
    Oh, I think she goes beyond criticizing another country’s policies when she accuses those who don’t share her opinions as hypnotized or bought off.
    She apologized about the "hypnotized" thing (which a writer in the NYT called "microaggression"--not full-out anti-Semitism), but she stands by the "bought off" thing--she said in her tweet that she isn't just against being bought out by AIPAC lobbyists, but she's against being bought off by anyone-- the fossil fuel industry, the NRA, etc. I'm with her there.
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    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    I thought she showed great restraint. Israel's long-ongoing mistreatment of Palestinians--particularly under Netanyahu--is apparently a third-rail issue among (heavily lobbied) legislators.

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    Simpleton Alan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaneV2.0 View Post
    I thought she showed great restraint. Israel's long-ongoing mistreatment of Palestinians--particularly under Netanyahu--is apparently a third-rail issue among (heavily lobbied) legislators.
    I can recall Democrats berating Israel and the Jewish people going back to at least the late 60's or early 70's when Netanyahu was a student at MIT. I think it's part of that uniquely Democratic trait of placing everyone in a gender or racial bucket and professing their superiority through disapproval of wrongs, real or imagined.
    "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not one bit simpler." ~ Albert Einstein

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan View Post
    I can recall Democrats berating Israel and the Jewish people going back to at least the late 60's or early 70's when Netanyahu was a student at MIT. I think it's part of that uniquely Democratic trait of placing everyone in a gender or racial bucket and professing their superiority through disapproval of wrongs, real or imagined.
    The British Labour Party seems to have a similar problem. Personally Iím inclined to give the benefit of the doubt and think it more about ideology than race.

    I think the same thing about Senators ďconcernedĒ that Catholic judicial nominees will be unable to treat various potential issues objectively. If the State is to triumph over the selfish individual for the good of all, there must be a cultural monoculture that brooks no moral dissent.

    But itís not personal. Just business.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Here's an ideology for you:

    We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves* and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

    *Back then those blessings were more abundantly reserved for white males, but I'm glad that courageous people over the past 200 years, regardless of party, have fought to ensure that "liberty for all" really means all. And I'm sure they don't mind if some prefer to cast that courage as a character defect of moral superiority.
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    I think of that less as an ideology than a legal framework aimed at limiting the power of a central government or any group, faction or region to dominate the country at large. Thatís why so many ideologues find various aspects of it to be so frustrating.

    It in fact minimizes the amount of ďcourageĒ required to make the kind of accusations Rep. Omar likes to toss around.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LDAHL View Post
    I think of that less as an ideology than a legal framework aimed at limiting the power of a central government or any group, faction or region to dominate the country at large. That’s why so many ideologues find various aspects of it to be so frustrating.

    It in fact minimizes the amount of “courage” required to make the kind of accusations Rep. Omar likes to toss around.
    I respect your view, but I see The Preamble as a mandate for government to ensure that everyone gets a fair shot at a good life. It specifically says that the Constitution is there to "ensure," "promote," "secure," and "establish." Those are all active verbs written as the True North of the legalese that follows.

    But as my husband tells me "You say black and I say white" (This is not an observation on race: he means that whatever he sees, I tend to see something else .) It's a matter of perspective.

    optical illusion.jpg
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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