Jews in America
I am glad that Adam Weissman took the time to respond to my article on the Duke anti-Semite, and I'd like to briefly reply to two points he makes in his response. First, the issue of Jews in America being "white." While minority groups exist well beyond the black-white dichotomy in the U.S., this country, for better or worse (well, worse) divides itself into black and white in the way that much of Europe was traditionally divided between Jewish and Christian, such that, in America today, Ashkenazi Jews, Arab-looking Jews, as well as Arabs themselves, are all frequently lumped into the category of "white." I wish all racial categorizations could end, but this is how it is; this is how our country tends to divide itself. Also, Weissman writes, "I choose not to revel in the luxury of my "yarmulke"-free existence,' as does Maltz." This was, I thought clearly, intended to be humorous; I am a woman, and, with all due respect to those women who choose to wear yarmulkes, kippot, or what have you, traditionally these head coverings are worn by men.
Divinity School letter
News of the letter from Divinity School faculty protesting President Bush's "misuse of religion" to justify the war in Iraq took me back to my own undergraduate days when I founded a small group to protest the first Gulf War. The world has moved on since 1991, however, and it is depressing to find today's anti-war protestors making the same tired arguments now that my ill-informed peers and I made back then. The right of the United States and its allies to protect the world community from the reckless ambitions of a mass-murdering dictator are reduced to "geopolitical calculations, desires for vengeance [and] military opportunism." Oil is of course adduced, just as my witless comrades and I used to chant "no blood for oil" back then. The fact that Saddam murdered hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Arabs and Kurds, that he launched two unprovoked, aggressive wars against his neighbors which caused over a million casualties, that he paid bounties to Palestinian suicide bombers and sheltered unrepentant mass murderers like Abu Abbas, killer of the wheelchair-bound Leon Klinghoffer; none of this matters to the Divinity School faculty who seem just as cocksure as George W. Bush that they have God on their side.
Martin J. Gidron