Friday, May 15, 2009

Heads, Nazis win; Tails, Jews lose

Bob points to this little spat at Indymedia NYC. (New York, for anyone who didn't know, is where I live. It is also the last place most people assume antisemitism exists.) It follows a story about the recent case of an Austrian hotelier which declared it will not allow Jewish guests. A blatant case of discrimination which (if I understand Bob correctly) Contested Terrain posted to Indymedia. Someone responds:
Hey you Zionazi shit.
You can readily identify Zionazis, as they're the ones who find discrimination against Jews distasteful. (I'm not really sure, but I actually don't think CT is a Zionist. I think he's more of an anarchist, in an anti-Deutsch mold. UPDATE: CT describes his views in the comments.) Then there's a response from someone Bob describes as "more sensible." This more sensible poster begins:
so do the zionists pay you to say things this stupid and offensive and blatantly anti semetic?
Of course, it's meant as a joke. Or at least I think it is. But what I find not so funny is how it uses antisemitic conspiracism as an explanation for antisemitism. Continuing:
hey indymedia, this is why no one gives a shit about this site! for the millionth time, anti semitism (or provacteur bullshit like this, which amounts to the same thing and means you are actually probably also doing free pr for israel's foreign policy by letting it be posted)
The problem with antisemitism, as depicted here, isn't that it will harm Jews. The problem is that it will hurt Indymedia's reputation. (It also, maybe, describes a sort of Jewish control, just shy of conspiracy.)
does exist, independent of whatever israel does or does not do, existed before israel and is as bad as racism in addition to dumbing down and poisoning the well for any kind of intelligent political debate.
Well, that's at least a bit better. But, "as bad as racism"? Funny how even the anti-racist bit manages to set us apart.

All in all, more sensible is a bit of a low standard.

But to oppose antisemitism is understood as 'coming out' as a Jew. Like a straight guy who won't put up with homophobic jokes. The explanation is that the straight guy is gay. Or the anti-racist who becomes a "nigger-lover." Whether antisemites use the straightforward "Jew" or the more circumspect "Zionazi" doesn't much matter - that dynamic is more important.


bob said...

Yes, "more sensible" by a very low threshold!

Great concluding paragraph.

Anonymous said...

nice post. as for me, i'm an anarchist-communist and an anti-antizionist (in the spirit of Ellen Willis).

Anonymous said...

New York City - "the last place most people assume antisemitism exists."

NY Times: 4 Accused of Bombing Plot at Bronx Synagogues