Can the Year of Anti-Semitism please end already?

The sniping about Judith Regan’s abrupt dismissal by HarperCollins last Friday is getting uglier and uglier, and I am nauseous to see that conversations about anti-Semitism have entered the arena.

‘Of all people, the Jews should know about ganging up, finding common enemies and telling the big lie,’” Ms. Regan said, according to the notes Mark Jackson made as the conversation unfolded…according to the notes, Ms. Regan then said that the literary agent Esther Newberg; HarperCollins’ executive editor, David Hirshey; HarperCollins’ president, Jane Friedman; and Mr. Jackson “constitute a Jewish cabal against her.”
A lawyer for Ms. Regan, Bert Fields, denied Monday that she had said there was a “Jewish cabal against her,” saying that she had used only the word “cabal” in the conversation, and that was done in response to Mr. Jackson’s using the word in a question to her. But Mr. Fields acknowledged that during the heated conversation by phone last Friday, she had made some version of the first statement, drawing attention to the fact that her boss and others involved in the controversy over the aborted O. J. Simpson project were Jewish.
He denied, though, that this reflected any anti-Semitism. “There is nothing insulting to Jewish people in saying that Jews should particularly understand what it is to be victims of the big lie,” Mr. Fields said. “They were looking for an excuse to fire her, and they fired her, and called it anti-Semitic. It ain’t anti-Semitic.”

The New York Times article goes on to dissect whether or not who said what, and whether or not it was lifted out of context. No doubt it was.
Look, I’ve never been a beleagered Judith Regan, or a drunk Mel Gibson. I’ve got no idea what it’s like to be a celebrity millionaire hot head in the midst of getting fired. Who the hell knows what she said? What I want to know is why I should care? Here’s what I do know: a shitstorm of media about whether or not this editor yelled anti-Semitic comments at a lawyer isn’t good for anyone, let alone the Jews. I thought we were past the era of PC policing. If Judith Regan is an anti-Semite, good riddance. Let her fester in her own unemploment and misery. Can’t we talk about something else in the newspapers?

One thought on “Can the Year of Anti-Semitism please end already?

  1. I don’t know if it’s “not good for the Jews” precisely. I do think it’s just silly. Seriously: who the heck cares? Don’t Jews, and the NYT, have more important things to worry about and publish in this world?

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