Identity, Politics, Religion

Boker Tov, Bigot!

Anne Lieberman at Boker Tov, Boulder! has a horrifically offensive post on her blog today that seeks to present tier-two Democratic front-runner Barack Obama as a closet antisemite. It’s usually not the kind of thing I’d waste my breath responding to, but I found her ideas so dangerous and so abhorrent — especially coming from a popular Jewish, pro-Israel blogger — that I simply couldn’t let it go, as I refuse to allow such views to be seen as representative of either the Jewish or pro-Israel community.
Lieberman begins her downward spiral into afrophobia by first citing a recent episode of Hannity and Colmes* in which guest Erik Rush, a conservative columnist, “brilliantly,” says Lieberman, attacks Obama’s church and pastor for allegedly being Black supremacists. Substituting the word “White” for “Black” in the church’s credo, Rush asks:

How many Americans would vote for a presidential candidate who was the member of a church that professed the following credo?

  1. Commitment to God
  2. Commitment to the White Community
  3. Commitment to the White Family
  4. Dedication to the Pursuit of Education
  5. Dedication to the Pursuit of Excellence
  6. Adherence to the White Work Ethic
  7. Commitment to Self-Discipline and Self-Respect
  8. Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness”
  9. Pledge to make the fruits of all developing and acquired skills available to the White Community
  10. Pledge to Allocate Regularly, a Portion of Personal Resources for Strengthening and Supporting White Institutions
  11. Pledge allegiance to all White leadership who espouse and embrace the White Value System
  12. Personal commitment to embracement of the White Value System.

The question is rhetorical, of course. The answer is that such a candidate wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting elected dog catcher…let alone President, because that candidate would be instantly branded a racist, among the most vile and frightening of white supremacists…

Here’s my challenge: In the above statements, substitute the word “White” for “Jewish” and tell me if you think it sounds racist and indicative of “Jewish supremacism.” To this very day, you see, antisemites routinely accuse Jews of “Jewish supremacism” for espousing and upholding a credo practically indistinguishable from the one above.
I can’t help but wonder how being committed to your community, taking pride in your heritage, and upholding its traditional values comes across as a statement of racial superiority. That is, of course, unless you happen to be — gasp! — Jewish; or worse yet, Black; or worse yet then, Muslim; or the ultimate rock-bottom: Mexican.
The reason it’s considered racist when Whites advocate such a position, first and foremost, is because white Christians are already in charge, and up until a mere 40 years ago, they considered Blacks and Jews to be subhuman, legislating accordingly. Whites literally ruled over Blacks, declaring them 3/5ths human.
Of course today no one would tell people of European descent that they don’t have rich cultural histories and religious heritages in which to find inspiration and a source of pride (WWII aside, of course). But this generic notion of “Whiteness” — of “White pride,” or of “White cultural heritage” — is a uniquely racist invention. The conception of “Whiteness” itself has never existed outside of the hierarchization of the human species, within “Whiteness” itself there being a hierarchy of purebloodedness over mixed ethnicity. In that, “White culture” itself amounts to no more than a culture of eugenics and racial theory. From the KKK to Stormfront — that is all that could be considered “White culture.”
White people, on the other hand, have real cultures, rich cultures, diverse cultures, with art, music, philosophy, theology. Ie., the cultures of their nations of origin: European, Mediterranean, Slavic, and so forth. Try substituting “White” in the text above with Italian, Irish, or even German. Does it sound racist? I don’t think so. Rather, it is only at the point where they begin to say, rather overtly, that they are a superior species, made by either G-d or science to rule over all the other peoples of the earth, and act accordingly, that they have crossed the line into racist and supremacist ideology and behavior.
When I lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, for example, there was a strong Polish community, a strong Italian community, a strong Dominican community, a strong Arab community and a strong Hasidic community — all living side by side. Are all of these communities engaging in racism and advocating racial supremacism because they take pride in their heritage and they look out for the other members of their ethnic community? That would be absurd! Sure, there may be a handful of whackos in every ethnic and religious community that think they’re G-d’s gift to the earth, but most folks just want to get by. And how do you get by? By sticking together. I believe it’s an evolutionary principle, in fact. The species that help each other survive, thrive.
Which is why, by the way, you might often hear Black folks say that what they appreciate most about the Jewish community is that we stick together (even if we have our moments of fractiousness). And here this fool is condemning a Black American community, freshly rebounding from 400 years of oppression, for emulating, in their own way, our example…
Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.
Moving on, Lieberman then cites Obama’s pastor and his affinity for Liberation Theology, claiming that Liberation Theology is an inherently anti-Jewish doctrine. Yet all Christian theology is inherently anti-Jewish. The New Testament in its entirety is a critique and condemnation of the Jewish community for its failure to serve G-d — a failure that resulted in the nullification of G-d’s covenant with the Jewish people. There is therefore nothing uniquely anti-Jewish about Liberation Theology. Such anti-Jewish remarks as Liberman cites could easily be found in any Christian sect’s reading of scripture.
However, with that in mind, there is nothing in Christianity’s condemnation of the Jewish people (other than the nullification of the covenant) that you will not find in our own scriptures. According to fundamental Jewish theology, the Temple was destroyed and we were exiled twice specifically for our failure to serve G-d. The reason the goyim persecute us to this day is because of our failure to serve G-d. The reason we have not yet been redeemed is because of our failure to serve G-d. The Christians got these supposedly anti-Jewish ideas from our own theology! It should not be viewed as some shocking surprise. Just read the Prophets. From an authoritatively religious Jewish perspective, such antisemitism is only G-d delivering on his promise to chase us across the earth until we repent.
So, nu? Big friggin’ deal. What’s the surprise? Why is this theology being considered unique to Obama’s church? It’s Torah.
What I find more perplexing and disturbing is that this same wretched, self-appointed defender of Israel and the Jewish people wrote a post not two months ago championing John Hagee for president! Like her nutjob contemporaries at AIPAC, Lieberman seems completely unperturbed by the fact that Hagee believes that the Holocaust was the Jews’ own faults for turning their backs on G-d — a belief he so happens to share with Neturei Karta. Yet Hagee gets a free pass, because as a Christian Zionist, he brings in loads of financial and political support to Israel, whereas he believes that he is helping bring about Armageddon. Despite his desire to see Israel destroyed in a firey cataclysm, and along with it, its Jewish inhabitants, Hagee gets a standing ovation, while Neturei Karta members are beaten in public — and all they want is a peaceful redemption by way of the Jewish people doing teshuva.
Lieberman then goes on to cast more suspicion and aspersions on Obama for the time he spent in madrassa, but that’s been so thoroughly ripped to pieces I’m not even going to bother.
Suffice to say, Anne Lieberman comes out looking like a giant bigot, and I would urge any and all true defenders of Jewish people and the state of Israel to disassociate themselves from her writing because all it does it make the rest of us look horrible for having anything in common with her.
*Anyone — and I mean anyone — who can stomach the antics of Sean Hannity (a man for whom I have no adjectives that are not obscene) has already proven their utter disconnect from both civility and reality. This is a man, you may recall, who sitting comfortably in his Fox News studio, saw fit to berate Shepard Smith, who was at the time knee deep in dead bodies, for daring to criticize the government’s actions in NOLA after Hurricane Katrina. There is a special place in hell reserved for the likes of Sean Hannity, and I for one proudly anticipate his reception there.

33 thoughts on “Boker Tov, Bigot!

  1. She is a bigot, does not understand that much of Christianity has antisemitic overtones (and many wonderful Christians challenging it as well) & that Hannity is also a bigot…oy…

  2. Mobius, you wrote,
    “The reason it’s considered racist when Whites advocate such a position, first and foremost, is because white Christians are already in charge, and up until a mere 40 years ago, they considered Blacks and Jews to be subhuman, legislating accordingly.”
    1) First of all, to compare the Jewish experience to the Black experience in this country is absurd, and utterly unfair both to how horribly blacks were treated, and relative to the rest of the world, though certainly still imperfect, how well we were treated. The experiences are nothing alike. And just as I protest when treifa medinanik haredim talk nonsense about the U.S., so too this is nonsense. This beat the shit out of what we had in Eastern Europe and Russia during the same time.
    2) When whites are treated as a category for discrimination AS THEY ARE, they also have every right to perceive themselves as a group. Racist policies create racial solidarity. And don’t anyone pretend I’m talking about hardcore White Nationalists. You’re only revealing your unwillingness to discuss the real issue. You can’t have it both ways.
    Own it.

  3. after the end of slavery up to the end of the civil rights era, i would say jews in europe had had it pretty much equal to how blacks had had it in america.
    and how, pray tell, are white people discriminated against on a scale even minutely comparable to the way in which people of color are still discriminated against today?

  4. Mobius, you throw the word Bigot around too loosely.
    Many of these 12 seem to say, all I really care about is the (superior) Black Community (err, African American, dont want to be called a Bigot).
    When running for President of the US, of 300M people, you better not come across as biased topwards a particular community. Dont forget that when especially when running for president this kind of scrutiny is to be expected (Flashback: John Edwards brings up Cheney’s Lezbian daughter – for crying out loud!!!!)
    Kissinger had this concern and he avoided looking biased towards Israel, to her detriment.
    Hell, is Farakhaan a Bigot, look at what he and his people went through!!
    (Either way B. Hussein Obama didn’t go through this, his grandparents were not slaves in this country)
    There is a leap from taking pride and being devoted to your community, than saying ie: I adhere to the Jewish work ethic.
    If that doesn’t say that non-Jews have an inferior work ethic and are therefore inferior – I am sorry, but you are mistaken.

  5. And it doesn’t even matter whether or not you think the Black community and the Jewish community have similar histories – what matters is that ANY historically oppressed group has the right to to say “WE are working to overcome the past and present oppression that WE have experienced” without being labeled as racist.
    Notice that none of the values on the list profess that Black people are better than anyone else; they’re committed to education, excellence, and values WITHIN their communities. If it was written “Committment to the superiority of the Black community over all others,” as it is written in white supremicist charters, then I’d be concerned. But not with this – Lieberman needs to wake up. She is a bigot.

  6. Mobius, I appreciate you clarifying that you were not speaking about how Jews were treated in the U.S., but rather, in Europe, but pre-Hitler, Jews still had it better in much of Europe than American blacks, though they increasingly faced quotas and affirmitive action policies directed against them.
    “and how, pray tell, are white people discriminated against on a scale even minutely comparable to the way in which people of color are still discriminated against today?”
    Why does it have to be the pissing game of victimology? Of course it’s completely different. But Whites are discriminated through official policies. The code word is “diversity.” And ‘people of color’ is all too often defined as an absurdly expansive category to include (as a leg up in terms of employment/advancement/admissions, etc) everyone “non-White,” which not only bothers insensitive reactionaries like myself who toe the same line on such issues as our socialist great-grandparents, but concerns many liberals who prefer to restrict reverse racist programs specifically to help only Blacks and Native Americans.

  7. Marisa, let’s look at what happens when we take out the word “historically,” to include the present as well, and substitute “White” for “Jew.”
    “And it doesn’t even matter whether or not you think the Black community and the White community have similar histories – what matters is that ANY oppressed group has the right to to say “WE are working to overcome the past and present oppression that WE are experiencing” without being labeled as racist.”
    Wow, you’re right Marisa — Whites have a right to come together and overcome racist policies directed at them. I agree completely!
    Power to the people! Power to ALL people!

  8. That’s all well & good DK, yes, if white people are an oppressed minority somewhere then they have the right to try to better themselves.
    But how exactly is knocking Obama’s church’s mission statement hurting white people? Isn’t that the point of this article, that Anne Lieberman believes that Obama is somehow part of a “Black Supremacist” community? Do you agree? I’m curious.

  9. Marisa,
    I don’t think Obama is part of a “Black Supremacist” community, no, and though I am somewhat uncomfortable with any potential presidential candidate today being focused on his/her race. and I would prefer we get away from that — people should allow that some of the things he has personally written were part of his own exploration of his familial past, and these past statements of exploration should not be cited as an example of his current P.O.V. Nor am I comfortable with using his church mission’s statement against him. That seems really weak.

  10. Pledge allegiance to all White leadership who espouse and embrace the White Value System
    That’s kind of weird with either the word “black” or “white.” Substituting the word “white” has a certain illustrative value here, although some people are over-addicted to this sort of point. Judaism is a religion, so it has a value system. I don’t think skin colors come with value systems included. Anne’s post was “horrifically offensive”? No, your post was overwrought. Have a joyous and kosher Pesach.

  11. “Out of necessity, the black church rarely had the luxury of separating individual salvation from collective salvation.” -Barack Obama from “Audacity of Hope”

  12. Obama has a far bigger problem than the one Anne Lieberman describes, and that is his connection with the anti-Semitic and anti-Catholic hate group (and his acceptance of money from America-hater and Israel-hater George Soros). Obama must be exposed for what he is before the primaries next year.
    There is plenty of time to inform Jews, Catholics, and evangelical Christians of what Obama’s friends at have to say about them, most of which should not be quoted in polite company. Ronald Reagan refused the Klan’s endorsement, but Barack Obama seems to lack Reagan’s character, integrety, and self-respect.

  13. wow, you posted an image to your site of george soros — a wealthy jew — depicted as an octopus with his tentacles of influence meddling everywhere; something that has been done in, say, 1000 editions of the protocols of the elders of zion. and you’re still stressing something a few assholes did on moveon’s forums? why don’t you monitor free republic for a while and tell me which is scarier…
    i’m very interested, bill, in who’s paying you to devote all your time to destroying moveon. which g.o.p. supporting group is it?

  14. You forgot to mention 2 facts,1 Eric Rush is Black 2.The Pastor of MR.Obama’s church visited Libya with Farrakan

  15. Without Bill, how else would we know that MoveOn was run by people whose horns are clearly visible if you just Photoshop them in?

  16. Certain people make me question whether everyone should have the right to free speech. I think the prerequisite should be a signed note from a psychiatrist that you’re not a paranoiac.

  17. Mobius wrote, “i’m very interested, bill, in who’s paying you to devote all your time to destroying moveon. which g.o.p. supporting group is it?”
    I’m not getting paid anything to stand up for common decency. If I were being paid by a major Republican organization, Rick Santorum would probably still be a U.S. Senator (because Bob Casey would have been forced to either repudiate MoveOn or tell Pennsylvania’s Catholic voters, of whom there are quite a few, why he consorts with a group that posts derogatory pictures of the Pope). In fact, Santorum’s campaign could have had this for free, but it dropped the ball and blew the opportunity. Jim Gerlach, on the other hand, used what I gave him and defeated MoveOn’s Lois Murphy, who was projected to win. I also achieved what the NRA, with all its millions of dollars, could not: the end of the Million Mom March in 2000-2001.
    The Soros octopus has nothing to do with his being Jewish. In fact, he allegedly collaborated with real Nazis to confiscate Jewish property during the Second World War, and he definitely hates Israel. The octopus has also been used to describe Communism (e.g. an octopus with Joseph Stalin’s head) and could describe anyone or anything with a pervasive influence. Furthermore, in Soros’ case, the analogy is accurate.
    Mylene wrote, “Without Bill, how else would we know that MoveOn was run by people whose horns are clearly visible if you just Photoshop them in?”
    I actually use Corel PhotoPaint 🙂 but I don’t need to add horns to’s staff. All I have to do is quote what their members said at the Action Forum, and they demonize themselves quite nicely. For all your criticism of me, you have yet to present any viable defense for’s reprehensible actions. To recap:
    (1)’s moderators have been proven beyond any doubt to have known about the hate speech, contrary to MoveOn’s denials.
    (2) The moderators deleted pro-Israel and anti-MoveOn postings while letting the hate speech stand. This makes MoveOn a hate group.
    (3) MoveOn itself published a derogatory cartoon of the Pope, similar to Thomas Nast’s 19th century cartoons.
    (4) Noah Winer’s official bulletin talks about “Neocons” with divided loyalties, and cites an anti-Semitic source.
    Mylene, your posting about the psychiatrist reminds me of purported advice given to lawyers. “If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law and the facts are against you, pound on the table.” I think you have reached the “pound on the table” phase, because the facts are definitely against MoveOn, along with the laws of basic decency that govern all civilized societies. I don’t think Daniel Webster, whom legend says got a man out of a deal with the Devil (with a jury picked by the Devil), could save MoveOn from the court of public opinion at this point.
    And MoveOn’s Action Forum is STILL offline. I predict they will never dare bring it back, at least not where I can view its contents. I beat them, plain and simple, and I expect to beat them every time I confront them.
    Mark wrote,
    “The Pastor of MR.Obama’s church visited Libya with Farrakan” This becomes more interesting every moment. Obama’s pastor with Louis “Judaism is a gutter religion and Hitler was a great man” Farrakhan. Obama may be the front runner today, but I predict that he will be history by the end of the summer, when the whole country sees what he really represents.

  18. Bill,
    Obama is not going to win the Democratic nomination anyway. He is too new and unproven on the national scene. I think your goal, judging from your obsequiece Reagan comments, is to promote Republicanism generally. And if so, using as if it is representative of Democrats generally, is nonsense.

  19. DK, claims to have “bought” the Democratic Party. I have plenty of problems with the Republicans, and I voted for as many Democrats as I did Republicans in the last election. Had Bob Casey not insisted on continuing to associate with MoveOn, I might have voted straight Democrat in 2006.
    If MoveOn is not representative of Democrats, then Democrats must denounce and repudiate it–much as I have denounced and repudiated the National Jewish Democratic Council and Union for Reform Judaism as not representing me as a Jewish voter.
    Reagan was the last Republican I felt good about voting FOR in a Presidential election. Since then, I’ve voted AGAINST Clinton, Gore, and Kerry. I was too young to vote in 1968 but I think Hubert Humphrey would have worked out well (certainly better than Nixon), so he is the last Democrat I felt good about in a national election.

  20. Ok,
    Here’s what I got now….
    Balaam’s Law: As a Jewschool discussion thread grows longer, the probability of Bill Levinson magically appearing and making any and all things connect to and his crusade against it approaches one.
    I expect to see that on Wikipedia asap, Mobius.

  21. and how, pray tell, are white people discriminated against on a scale even minutely comparable to the way in which people of color are still discriminated against today?
    It is so tiresome to read false and misleading statements. People of color have the opportunity to make it just as white people do. The suggestion that the system is designed to keep them oppressed is utter nonsense.

  22. DK,
    Pointing that out to me is obvious. It’s self-evident, because I’m the funniest person I know. That my comment was funny is about as obvious as how horrible is.
    Right, Bill?
    Eh? Eh?

  23. Erm. This might get lost as this thread seems to have already descended into chaos, but not all Christian theology is “inherently anti-Jewish.” Check out the work of R. Kendall Soulen on Karl Barth, and read Michael Wyschogrod’s “Abraham’s Promise.” Non-supersessionism is a thriving movement in a number of Christian theological denominations.

  24. well… it might be a theological concession NOW, but i’d argue that’s a short term solidarity trip: bound to dissolve once real theological engagement over the question of How Much The Law matters and What’s This God’s Trip? come up again.

  25. Balaam’s Donkey, I saw that they were talking about Barack Obama and his (alleged) Black separatist preacher. This would be consistent with Obama being involved with a hate group (, although it is to his credit that he does not seem to be involved with racist and anti-Semite Al Sharpton. In fact:
    “Al Sharpton’s desperation is showing. His recent attacks on presidential candidate Barack Obama and his threat to withhold his support have exposed the trick behind Sharpton’s magic act. His audience is leaving the tent, and Sharpton is scrambling for relevance.”
    Well, I’m actually starting to like Obama a little better. If Al Sharpton is against him, there must be SOMETHING good about him.

  26. Mobius,
    Barack Obama recently appeared arm in arm with a prominent racist and anti-Semite named Al Sharpton. Res ipsa loquitur, the thing speaks for itself.

  27. oh bill, give me a freakin’ break. al sharpton said something stupid during a race riot 20 years ago, for which he has repeatedly apologized.
    george w. bush, on the other hand, said the jews are going to hell because they don’t believe in jesus, and never apologized for it. not only that, but his family made their fortune helping finance the nazi war machine and were primary financiers of the american eugenics movement. to this you say nothing while operating under the delusion that bush has somehow been good for either the jewish community or the state of israel. in the meantime, bush has allowed wahaabist extremism to thrive throughout the muslim world while coddling his royal saudi business partners. under his watch, not only has hamas risen to power, but the u.s.’s aid to the palestinian authority doubled even after the alleged boycott. he has also, through his rhetoric, made sure to associate the iraq war with the security of israel, thus making the most unpopular war in american history the fault of the “dually-loyal” american jewish community.
    al sharpton is just a loudmouth who poses no actual danger to jews. george w. bush, on the other hand, is jeopardizing all of our lives, and living on the fat of a genocide perpetrated against us.

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