I’m typing this post with one hand while attempting to remove my foot from my mouth with the other.
A reader wrote me this evening to say this:
Do not alienate the Jewish community. I personally do not know how many Jews read your blog, but we are your natural allies. Who is a stauncher ally than Israel against the threat of militant Islam? Americans have only been attacked on US soil twice. Israel lives with the reality, not the threat, but the reality of constant terror. Death to America is chanted all over the Islamic world, but not as much as Death to the Jews is chanted.
Referencing your post, “Beyond the Pale,” why would you feel the need to toss away such a natural ally? There is no call for belittling anti-Semitism. If I am not mistaken, you say that freedom of speech should be protected. I would die for Hargrove’s right to say Jews killed Christ, wrong as it may be. However, I think you need to make it more explicit that you are ridiculing Hargrove for adding offense to an unrelated party (Jews) in addition to ridiculing the state of Virginia for apologizing for slavery. Indeed, I understand you are making fun of the PC police. Still, the way you phrased your original post made it seem you meant that you supported Hargrove’s sentiments.
I know you mean well. As a moderate Democrat, I know you are not a crazy right wing intolerant Christian lunatic as the bleeding heart liberals would call you. You are a secular humanist, full aware of the dangers Islamofascism poses to the enlightened world. Are you a crusader? I should say so, though not in the vein the jihadists would accuse you. You crusade against an inhumane evil, against those would limit free speech in a misplaced sense of decency. When WWII threatened democracy all over the world, it was people who spoke up and fought against the Fascists that saved freedom.
Allah loves ya! (irony~)
His point is well-taken. Del. Frank D. Hargrove’s little aside about the Jews was so self-evidently ludicrous that I didn’t think I needed to point it out.
But now I know that I should have, and I will be clear: I do not support any version of the old canard about the Jews and Christ; I consider it a close cousin to the Blood Libel. Mr. Hargrove’s mention of it is at least as embarassing as the politically correct high dudgeon that arose in response to the rest of what he said.
Mel Gibson has managed to drive the idea into the mainstream, so that it is no longer obviously ridiculous.
When I’m feeling sardonic I get carried away, and obviously I’m not paying enough attention to how my words appear to you, our loyal readers.
I’m glad you all are keeping me in line; don’t hesitate to take me to task. I rely on you for it.