Culture, Politics

Why Jews Like Me Hate Sarah Palin

Yesterday I was on the subway, and I didn’t get a seat. This happens often. As I hung onto the bar, I threw up a little in my mouth. Why? The woman sitting right in front of my waist was reading Going Rogue. Why would a Black woman from Harlem or the Bronx (my stop on the express train is the first after it passes through the Bronx and Harlem) be reading Sarah Palin’s stupid book?
There was a post on Gawker today, by Pareene, asking “Why do the Jews hate Sarah Palin so much?” I dug a little deeper, reading the Commentary piece and subsequent rebuttal referenced in the Gawker post, because I am a Jew, and I think Palin is a big pile of wasted space.
Jennifer Rubin points out that Palin is pro-life, while many Jews are not. (Gawker summarizes Rubin’s argument by saying, “basically that American Jews dislike Palin because of all of her bullshit rural working-class signifiers: large family, no formal education, folksy, hunting, etc. Jews, per Rubin, hate that stuff.”) My opinion only (and feel free to cut me up in the comments – after my post about Birthright, I can take it) is that genetic testing prevents bringing suffering into the world. Jewish law states that any pregnancy that will cause harm, emotionally or physically, is a pregnancy that can be terminated. End of story.
Palin is all about church, while Jews generally believe in the separation between church and state. Palin is a huntin’ hockey mom living at the very edge of Alaska, where, perched on her couch, she can see Russia, while Jews populate the big cities and slaughter goats with intentionality instead of hunting. She attended multiple universities on the way to earning but one degree, while Jews are generally urban, educated, Blue State dwellers. She’s from the rugged outback, while Jews pretend to be outdoorsy in their North Face Fleeces.
I may support Pareene’s criticism:

This strikes us as fairly reductive and inflammatory! Like basically Jews are all urban cosmopolitan elites sneering at stupid hard-working Christians, and all that? Ok, Commentary! If you say so!

Jews, as a group, tend to be hard-working. We work in a variety of fields, from running restaurants to writing in the blogosphere, from professing in the halls of higher education to teaching kindergarten. Sure, some of us love outdoor adventures, and have excellent shooting skills. As a camp person, I love spending a couple of nights sleeping in a tent and cooking over a fire.
David Frum’s response points out that Palin is just scary to anybody who doesn’t want to see American divided into first- and second-class citizens. Pareene states that there are many reasons not to like Palin. But when it comes down to it, at least for me, there is a visceral reaction to a woman in a position of influence who is just not smart. I will not deny her facility with PR, as she certainly has a team of people who know how to make a name for her.
McCain had a chance as a presidential candidate, and by choosing the sideshow that was and is Sarah Palin, he made it a lot easier for Obama to get elected. So, I will continue to grimace at mentions of Sarah Palin, Russia, her house, and her stupid, stupid book. But I will do it from a Blue State, where my BS and MA keep me warm at night, after eating a large dinner of kosher, organic turkey and relaxing in one of my many camp t-shirts or fleeces.

43 thoughts on “Why Jews Like Me Hate Sarah Palin

  1. “Jewish law states that any pregnancy… End of story.”
    I don’t think it’s appropriate to state in such absolute terms something about which there is open debate.
    I don’t see the word “rabbi” in front of your name, and I’m guessing you probably don’t have סמיכה‎ (rabbinical ordination). In any case, what you wrote is not consistent with accepted halacha regarding abortion. Judaism sometimes requires abortion, and sometimes prohibits it, but in no case is it a choice.
    Aish Hatorah’s website has an excellent article that explains the Jewish position on abortion at this link: http://www.aish.com/ci/sam/48954946.html
    This part is particularly relevant: “Judaism recognizes psychiatric as well as physical factors in evaluating the potential threat that the fetus poses to the mother. However, the danger posed by the fetus (whether physical or emotional) must be both probable and substantial to justify abortion”
    “Palin is all about church, while Jews generally believe in the separation between church and state.” Those two statements aren’t at odds with each other, unless you think it’s impossible for a person to be religious without opposing the establishment clause of the constitution. For the record, I consider myself a religious Jew (“I’m all about shul”), and I support the establishment clause.

  2. Setting aside the grotesque picture of the Jewish community painted in the article (we hate Sarah Palin because we kill our disabled?), Rubin never actually establishes that Jews hate Sarah Palin more than the general population. The only statistic she cites is that 57 percent of Jews have an unfavorable view of Sarah Palin, compared to 34 percent with a favorable view. Given that 78 percent of American Jews voted for Barack Obama, that doesn’t strike me as some over-the-top hating. And she never compares that with opinion polls of the population at large.
    I have no doubt that lots of Jews strongly dislike and even hate Sarah Palin. My grandfather, who had a very low opinion of Obama and was planning to vote for McCain, changed his mind at the last minute because he couldn’t bear the thought of Palin being a heartbeat away. I also have no doubt that Jews, statistically speaking, fall into demographic groups that tend to strongly dislike or even hate Sarah Palin.
    However, my pro-life, war-supporting, tax-hating, Republican-voting evangelical Christian in-laws … also hate Sarah Palin. Just saying.

  3. Interesting. Liberals HATE??? I thought you were so loving and open minded people????
    If you don’t like Sarah Palin, you are ANTI-ISRAELI and not a Jew – you’re a liberal. Just because you have a Hebrew-sounding name and own a dradel doesn’t make you a Jew.
    The Israeli Rabbinate determines who is a Jew and clearly you would never make it past the border.
    Sarah Palin is pro-Israeli. Barack Obama hates Jews and is anti-Israeli.

  4. I’m a Jew that hates Palin with a vengeance. I hate her because she’s a malignant, narcissistic sociopath. How do I know this? Close, personal, traumatic experience with two such sociopaths. Kind of like being on the receiving end of two very charming wife beaters, I now recognize them a mile away. And the ones I tangled with were very smart. Palin has the added nastiness of being highly ignorant.

  5. This statement is not even close to correct.
    >>>>> Palin is all about church, while Jews generally believe in the separation between church and state. <<<<<
    Where in her career as Mayor, or as Governor of Alaska did Palin support the establishment of a state church?
    Governor Palin has clearly respected the separation of Church and State in her official acts.

  6. What a snark. Racist views as to what “Blacks” should read also? Do Blacks all walk in lock step? Think the same?
    Me thinks someone might be a wee bit jealous?

  7. This surely must be sarcasm…and someone forgot to mention it. Palin will be the next president & she will save America from Islamofascism. That is if its not too late.

  8. This bigoted, hate-filled, moronic article denounces Gov. Sarah Palin as “just not smart”.
    I read Palin’s book and find it reveals a personable and thoughtful American woman who is a natural leader with a strong moral compass.
    Palin is also a true friend of Israel, not a dupe of Karl Marx.

  9. There is no reason to really “hate” Sarah Palin. You may think she’s unworthy of certain office or position, you may disagree with her beliefs and positions, but as for how “Jews” feel about her, this is ridiculous. Sarah Palin is extremely pro-Israel and seems to respect Jews as a whole. Don’t needlessly insult and demonize the hand that is- if not feeding you- at least being respectful and non-hateful toward you. Not all Jews are shrill leftists who feel divorced from all “Middle-American” values.

  10. Sarah Palin is inspirational, successful, intelligent, and Reaganesque. It will be a joy to see her take office in early 2013. It makes me weep however when I consider the HUGE differences between our current president and someone like Ronald Reagan or Sarah Palin. In a time of crisis, such as we see today, we need a president that can lead. Obama clearly is not up to the task.
    America needs someone that is willing to destroy the political machines of both parties that, for too long now, have traded short term, personal gain for destructive policies in support of special interest groups. That person is Sarah Palin.

  11. Wow. Nothing like a post on Sarah Palin to bring out all the trolls.
    I’d like to remind everyone that ad hominem comments will not make it through moderation.
    I’d also like to point out that SBB didn’t dream up the title of this post – she borrowed it from Gawker.

  12. “She’s from the rugged outback, while Jews pretend to be outdoorsy in their North Face Fleeces.”
    sadly, this is true. what ever happened to tough, awesome jews?

  13. Voted for the disaster Obama = Opinion Zero
    My entire life I have heard the Orthodox & conservative jews that reform & liberal jews are non-jews or Jew-hating-Jews.
    I never thought much of the comment until the Nov 08 election.
    We have a MUSLIM President (in islam when your father is Muslim you are muslim, regardless of conversion, in Judaism it is your mother) who despises Israel, protect terrorists and is a racist.
    The Orthodox are correct & yes most liberal jews are jew-hating-jews. They despise Israel and I hear it all the time.
    Cory, the jew from Miami – Sarah Palin 2012

  14. There wasn’t much about the why, just how you are different than her. If you hate Sarah Palin, than you hate %50 of the country including my mother.
    Wal Mart Shopping, Gun Shooting, Government Fearing, Country Supporting, Hard Working, Blue Collar Americans should be hated? Maybe she is not any of these, but you give reasons for hating her because of this.
    Sure she is a little out there, but to call her stupid, and everything she does stupid, and a waste of space? This kind of talk leads to Jews controlling everything and yes – to why many people hate Jews. Oversimplification. When you can play your cards right where the second most powerful party in the most powerful country in the world thinks YOU can provide them with the best chance to win, you are not stupid. And to say that it became easier? Obamas team was scared by what this women started, and look at health care reform, she was one of the biggest opponents, and look where that ended up, a shell of its former self. Palin can insight angry masses, whip up fervor, thats a kind of intelligence this article could never do.
    P.S. I dont agree with Sarah Palins Views
    Welcome to Jewschool!

  15. Moshe Dyan was one tough SOB, he ate sand for breakfast. Dont spill your urban Jewish BS/MA on me. I’ve got my degrees but like my immigrant parents would say, Americans are “Shokolad” or chocolate in Russian, Soft and sweet, not tough as nails.
    Trust me, Sarah Palin would wilt under the gaze of Golda Meir!!
    There are plenty of outdoorsy, tough as nails Jews, we just prefer to laugh at folks like you who lay claim to their softer, order takeout side.
    Double bagels to you!
    Shalom
    ~j

  16. Im a jew and i know the biggest enemy of israel is liberal jews.
    How any jew could vote for obama just blows my mind.
    Sarah Palin is my number one choice for president, she will be the only person who can bring the tea party and the repubs together.
    I trust her over any other candidate
    Live your lives how you want free, not how the corporations want you to.

  17. The premise of this post is interesting; its execution is not. Speaking as a Jew who is none too fond of Sarah Palin, I found the tone sneering and the article simplistic.
    For example,
    +The first paragraph is a hostile condemnation of Sarah Palin that I thought could be handled in a classier manner by staying away from personal attacks on the woman reading the Sarah Palin book on the train.
    +”Jennifer Rubin points out that Palin is pro-life, while many Jews are not. ” I tend to disagree with this. I would argue that Judaism prohibits abortion of the ground of birth defects and that Reform and Orthodox Jews tend to more specifically frown on abortion and have more in common with Palin in that way.
    +Palin is a huntin’ hockey mom living at the very edge of Alaska, where, perched on her couch, she can see Russia, while Jews populate the big cities and slaughter goats with intentionality instead of hunting. She attended multiple universities on the way to earning but one degree, while Jews are generally urban, educated, Blue State dwellers.
    All of these are just assertions unless they are backed up with data. The image of the Jew as New York hipster in North America is, I think, inaccurate given the myriad of Jewish populations that exist throughout the continent and don’t fit any of these criteria yet are still Jews and key voting demographics. I would like to see some more research on this because this posit is shaky.
    +But when it comes down to it, at least for me, there is a visceral reaction to a woman in a position of influence who is just not smart.
    The post should have started with this. It would have made for a much stronger argument and made the post more cohesive, and it is only this sentence that makes me understand why the author hates Sarah Palin so much.
    That having been said, the post is thick on sneer and opinion but a little too low on acutal links and research for me to consider it a valid explanation for why Jews don’t like Sarah Palin.

  18. While I have a problem with the thought that as a Jew I should davka have a problem with Sarah Palin, but my problem with Sarah Palin does reflect my status as a Jew, a woman and an American.
    My issues with Ms. Palin are not that she isn’t smart, because I believe she is *very* smart nor that she considers herself Christian nor that she handles a rifle like Annie Oakley. Whatever.
    My issues are that she is a demagogue who runs/hides at the least provocation and then speaks in a version of Newspeak that would make Orwell cringe to justify her behavior. I have a problem with the fact that she is ill-educated, proud of it and has no desire to grow/learn as a leader. I have a problem with the fact that she is a loudmouth fire-brand who ducks and covers and whines “did I do that?” when she’s caught. I have a problem with the self-centered self-*un*awareness that led her to truly believe that she was the best candidate for the position of Vice President (IIRC, her reaction was not “let me make sure I am qualified” but an unqualified, “hell, yeah”).
    As a Jew, I have a problem with the above. As a Jew, I expect my leaders to both educate themselves and to be proud of such education and to encourage others to equally educate themselves. As a Jew, I expect my leaders to speak honestly and with moderation and to recognize when their language is inflammatory and potentially damaging. As a Jew, I expect that my leaders will take the time to engage in self-reflection and remorse, not victimize themselves and pawn off their self-created issues onto others.

  19. Ploni Almoni, Just because someone isn’t a rabbi, doesn’t mean they can’t make a point about Jewish law. And Aish’s halacha isn’t everyone’s halacha. You say that Judaism doesn’t allow for choice in abortion. My Judaism does.

  20. cantorpenny, your post just affirms everything Jennifer Rubin wrote in her Commentary piece linked above.
    I’m not sure that specifically Jews hate Palin more than the average leftist. I think the leftist hatred of Palin is a remarkable sociological/psychological phenomenon and I’d love to see more study and analysis of it.
    SBB, what’s your basis for claiming something like this: “Jewish law states that any pregnancy that will cause harm, emotionally or physically, is a pregnancy that can be terminated. End of story.” ??? That notion is contradicted by your own links!
    “is that genetic testing prevents bringing suffering into the world.” Fine. Presumably then you support the abortion of genetically impaired babies. That’s a fairly widespread secularist position and a major point of contention with non-leftists.
    Religious folks tend not to believe that a genetically imperfect baby ipso facto warrants abortion. There are actually millions of people who would view it as the fulfillment of their mission on this planet to adopt and love such a child. I think that difference is a factor in Palinphobia, since it gets close to the core of what people are willing to sacrifice for their moral commitments.
    “Palin is all about church, while Jews generally believe in the separation between church and state.”
    According to that idea, people who are “all about church” want the establishment of a federal religion. Do you really believe that? Do Jews who are “all about synagogue” also want the establishment of a federal religion?
    The mention of “separation of church and state” has become hot recently but most people who talk about it have little understanding of its origins.

  21. LEAVE SARAH PALIN ALOOOOOOOOOONE!
    but seriously, folks.
    I think there’s one thing SBB left out as to why Jews don’t like Sarah Palin- she’s absolutely, completely, 100% full of sh!t. She lies, disembles, makes things up that simple, basic fact-checking can puncture faster than a mac truck full of porcupines bearing down on 99 red balloons. I mean, how many fact-checkers did the AP assign to her book? Was that because they didn’t want to give the one poor fact checker a nervous breakdown?
    She’s used the powers of her office to attack personal enemies. She doesn’t stay up on current events, and when she does, its to push lies like “death panels” and “socialism” (and as a lefty, i’m here to tell you a little secret… Obama’s NOT A SOCIALIST! His health care plan? NOT EVEN CLOSE TO SOCIALIST! Nowhere NEAR single payer or any other well regulated health care system that every other major economy has. HE’S NOT!) and whip people up into a frenzy. And she’s very much full of sh!t doing it.
    And that’s why most Jews I know hate her. And I think em’s point also goes here. I know a lot of conservatives who have the exact same problems with her- that she lies, that she uses ridiculous rhetoric, and that she doesn’t know what’s going on.
    Rick H: I hope that you remember the next time you sit at a computer and type something hateful and wack, that the words you’re responding to like that are written by another person. I for one am sure you’re a nice guy who just had a crappy day and took it out on someone you didn’t know.
    Jenny: I disagree very strongly with your comparison of Palin to Reagan- do you honestly think that Reagan would’ve quit being governor of California two years into his term? Reagan was able to work with a Democratic Congress during most of his term in office, do you think Sarah Palin would find middle ground to do that? Would he only allow two real interviews and demand pre-screened questions? Personally, I think Reagan was horrible for this country, but he put in work.
    HD- while the SNL extrapolation may not have come out of Palin’s mouth, this did, which is just as laughable: As Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where do they go? It’s Alaska.
    Though it is interesting to note that much of the impressions done of Sarah Palin involved what she _actually_ said being repeated.
    Ben David- I would strongly agree with the assertion or suggestion that because the health care reform bill is weak merely because Sarah Palin opposed it. There are millions of other reasons that (insurance industry paying big bucks to lobbyists and to senators, joe lieberman, rahm, obama not pushing hard enough for a better bill) trump her presence. did it help, obviously not. but i don’t think she was that factor.
    to you other point- I don’t think SBB is claiming to hate the blue collar folks in this country, only a demogogue who would lie to them, mislead them, serve as the mouthpiece of the corporations who took their jobs and profitted of subprime loans that now have them completely screwed in the name of “folksy populism” To extrapolate that she hate 50% of the country seems way off base.

  22. My original comment was deleted. I’m not sure why.
    But anyway, having a different culture than someone else is a a pretty shallow reason to hate them. Having a different opinion than someone else, especially on issues that leave many people divided, is a pretty shallow reason to hate someone. And “hate” is an awful strong word, really. Dislike, maybe?

  23. I happen to like MRS.Palin. She has a good heart and is closer to what I believe in as a JEW. Yet, alas, I am no rabi. Your view, however, is what is painting picture of Jews that I would not be proud to be. I am a Jew in a forein nation. Diaspora. However, the heart of Judaism is not, for me, what you just described. I’m sorry for you. You must be a very confused and torn up person most of the time. Is that why you have chosen to spew in a blog? Will you find comfort no where else? I choose not to be the type of Jew you described. I am a Palin supporter and I think that she is more in line with what we, Jews like myself, actually believe. I wish you well and hope you find comfort sometime. TXLADY706

  24. Ruby K — please. You hate Sarah Palin because she’s right wing, a religious Christian and has some sex appeal. And that last one is something that few right wingers have been blessed/burdened with recently. It comes as a shock.
    And if ANY non-Jew was loudly talking about why he/she “hates” a Jewish politician — or spoke about any Jewish politician in the terms you use for Sarah Palin — they would be suspected (if not accused) of antisemitism.
    Like I said….. Leftist hatred of Sarah Palin is a phenomenon that deserves more research.

  25. I don’t hate Sarah Palin. I don’t even hate people who think she’s smart. But I think she’s dumb. And I think people who think she’s not dumb are pretty gullible. And by dumb I mean both unaware about the world outside Alaska and not as sharp as other Republican politicians. I can stand to be run by a capable politician who has different values than me. But I want to kick other Americans in the face when they vote for someone with pathetic qualifications.
    And if you’re going to imply sex appeal is a rationalle for hate, Eric, it’s only fair to investigate whether you support her because your other head is doing the voting. I mean, fair’s fair in love and foreign policy.

  26. Eric: How would you do said research? Clearly it’s not by asking people on the left, because when they articulate the reasons for their feelings, like Ruby K just did, you just dismiss them. Telling people what they really feel, and why, is a huge pet peeve of mine, and it really detracts from debates. I don’t appreciate you doing it here.

  27. Why Jews like me hate Jews like you.
    Because you supported Barack Obama, who is the most anti-Israel President in our nation’s history. Obama was best friends with Rashid Khalidi, who helped him write his first book. Khalidi is a rabidly anti-Semetic Arab allied with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. Obama in his Cairo speech said Israel is the home for Jews because of the Holocaust, omitting any Biblical reference, and ignoring the decades of pre-war Zionism (on purpose to suit his Muslim allies). He then chastized Israelis for their treatment of Arabs who call themselves “Palestinians”. Yet you and “Jews” like you support him.
    Because you support Obama even though his Godfather George Soros created JStreet to divide Jews and neuter AIPAC, and Obama has elevated JStreet in an attempt to marginalize pro-Israel Jewish interests. Obama has even appointed Hannah Rosenthal of JStreet as his “Anti-Semetism Czar”…truly the fox guarding the henhouse.
    Because you support abortion on demand, intermarriage, and “a la carte” Judiasm, which means whatever you want it to mean. Because you are a Jew-In-Name-Only (JINO). Because you, like most stupid JINOs are likely anti-gun, even though Hitler’s first act as Chancellor was to disarm the population so Jews could not fight back. Because you like most stupid JINOs are paranoid about Evangenical Christians–by far the best friends Jews and Israel have on this Earth. Yet JINO fools say “they only love Israel because they believe when Jesus comes back Jews will all convert!!!” So what? Do YOU believe that? Who cares? So you would rather support B. Hussein Obama and his Muslim buddies who want to BEHEAD Jews like Daniel Pearl rather than convert them?
    Because, due to all the above, Sarah Palin is more observant of the Torah than you are, and thus is MORE JEWISH than you are.

  28. I’m a Jew that loves Sarah Palin’s politics. She is the antithesis of the racist, smarmy, elitism I grew up in an a Boston suburb. You know: “Well, Negroes aren’t very smart, poor dears, so we have to give them extra help and not expect too much of them” and “Anyone who wants to own a gun should be imprisoned” and “people are just not capable of taking care of themselves; we have to do it for them for their own good.” I was soaked in this Leftist poison for my entire childhood. Then, after college, I joined the Navy, saw the real world, and realized that what I had been taught by other Jews was wrong, pernicious, hideously racist, and just plain ugly.

  29. Um. Quite apart from how anyone feels about Sarah Palin or her politics, I can’t imagine how this post made it onto this site. The lack of thought that appears to have gone into this screed is embarrassing. The voting patterns of American Jews is an interesting sociological question, and of course anyone is welcome to air their views on a particular public figure. But instead of anything substantive or thoughtful (or witty or self-deprecating or anything), we get inanities like “Palin is all about church” or “Jews tend to be hard-working.” (As well as the long-past-funny “I threw up a little in my mouth.”) This reads like it was written by a high school freshman trying desperately to be intelligent.
    I’m no fan of Sarah Palin, and I haven’t read her book (though I make it a practice to read books before criticizing them; perhaps this poster should do the same). But this post makes me embarrassed for this (generally intelligent, generally thoughtful) site. Seriously.

  30. Eric: please don’t put words in my mouth. I welcome actual well articulated disagreement from all perspectives. I don’t like bullshit. End of story. Besides I know PLENTY of people who vehemently disagree with Eric Cantor, Rahm, and that guy from Connecticut, and am reasonably certain they’re not anti semetic.

  31. SBB, where are you? There are comments that need responses here.
    I don’t like Sarah Palin, but I also don’t like this post too much.
    And, by the way, there’s nothing I hate more than this: “Jews are generally urban, educated, Blue State dwellers.”
    For the eight-millionth time, there are Jews all across the midwest and south and southwest and texas who live great Jewish lives in vibrant Jewish communities.

  32. I would hope this person does not speak for all Jews. As a Christian mother I teach tolerance for all religions. To bad this persons mother did not do the same.
    Oh and Jeff’s post made me laugh.”Americans are “Shokolad” or chocolate in Russian, Soft and sweet, not tough as nails.” haha if that were true we would not be the nation that we are.

  33. Wow. I don’t know what to think of this post.
    On the one hand, I am also “privileged” to reside in a Blue state. As the first person in my family to earn a University degree I carry no small amount of bragging rights to my education. And I am blessed to be part of a loving, active Jewish community that has embraced me and my spouse as just another part of their extended family.
    But I didn’t grow up privileged, or connected to Jewish community or to a strong sense of Zionism. I was in some ways what I would call a “white trash Jew”. I spent my adolescence in a semi-rural suburb east of Portland, OR where my sister and I were the only two Jewish kids in our high school. My parents could not afford synagogue membership, Hebrew school or Jewish camp. My camping trips were taken with the Girl Scouts, where I actually learned how to pitch a tent, fish, backpack, hike, swim, provide primitive first aid and thrive in the outdoors. Marching band and drum corps were letter sports and I excelled at them. I was an occasional guest at various friends’ church services, where the priest would learn I was a Jew and wish me a very happy Passover and ask where we got our Matzohs (we had to drive twenty miles across town into the rich westside suburbs to find any). And in the summer my sister and I made spending money by babysitting, delivering papers, picking berries, clearing brush, and helping a neighbor clean out his horse stalls. Bored Saturday nights were sometimes spent sneaking pop and beer from the refrigerator parked outside a neighbor’s house, watching Portland Wrestling and making fun of how obviously faked it was.
    We grew up with a combination of our parents’ liberal leanings and our own strange sense of political independence — imagine a social liberal mixed with a fiscal conservative and a touch of libertarianism and you have someone like me. I am too sad and angry about the homeless army vet who froze to death in a downtown doorway last month, and too stressed about my spouse who hasn’t found a full-time job for over TWO YEARS, to worry about what goes on in Israel — a place I can’t afford to visit anyway. For me, and for lots of Jewish Americans, it is all about what is happening RIGHT NOW, where we live; and about how hard it remains to make a living and get our kids a decent public education in this toilet of an economy.
    And while Sarah Pailn and I don’t necessarily see eye to eye on a great many things, I GET her. I GET why she struck a chord in the hearts of so many Americans — especially those who, like me, had to earn their way through college (it took me twenty years to finish my degree) and whose jobs today barely pay enough to make rent each month. The big draw about Sarah Palin has as much to do with working peoples’ hatred of the class system that ALREADY exists in this country as with Palin’s decidedly ordinary roots.
    If your BS and MA are all that’s keeping you warm at night, perhaps you ought to toss another log on the fire while you enjoy the safety of your insular, east-coast-centric privilege. Your post reeks of classism and snobbery in a way that doesn’t make any Jew look good, or even merely decent.

  34. SP isn’t dumb, she’s militantly ignorant. Unless you think that deliberately being ignorant is dumb. I suppose you could make a case.
    Without getting too deep into the Palin mater here, though, as a liberal, halachic Jew, I was offended by many of the statements in the post about *Jews* which are at best oversimplified. It’s true that hunting is frowned upon by Jewish law. It’s not true (as Ploni ALmoni corretly points out) that Jewish law allows abortion end of story. (Whether in the more leftish versions of Judaism that’s the view is another matter, since that’s not a matter of Jewish law). It’s not true that all Jews live in cities – I love how New Yorkers think that all Jews live in New York, which is what the implication is here, and by the way, Jews live in other cities than New York, AND they live in suburbs, small towns and the country.
    God forbid that Palin should get anywhere near the white house, even as a tourist, but the tone of the post wasn’t, in my opinion, very fetching.
    BY the way, congrats on a first post that roused the rabble. Good work.

  35. Without getting into everyone’s arguments, it seems that most comments ignore the author’s use of Pareene’s title, and Rubin’s hyperbole.

  36. Wow. I haven’t been able to reply to these comments because I don’t do blogging while I’m at work, and because I choose not to do computer work on Shabbat. (Wait, what? I’m an observant Jew?! Who knew?) @David AMW, here I am. And here are my responses.
    Some of you have horrified me, others have amused me. Most of you pointed out my concerns with my post. I knew right wingers would jump on me because I was anti-Palin. I used the word “hate” to line up my argument with the source post at Gawker. I don’t really hate her. There are bigger fish to fry in this world. But, yes, I do think she’s a moron and would be a terrible VP or President.
    Part of progressive Judaism for me is about conversation. Conversation about things that don’t allow consensus because of a variety of opinions on any given topic, about sensitive issues, about conflicts. It was great to be referred to as “whiny” (@Rick H), “Racist” (@chick – ok, that one stung), and to have someone claim that I suffered from a severe case of “classism and snobbery” (@beth h).
    @Eric was concerned that my thoughts on abortion were disputed within my own links. That contradiction is essential to the arguments of Judaism, recorded from the time of the Talmud onward. Two Jews? Three opinions!
    @AJ read Palin’s book…and others suggested I read it before I snark off. Maybe I’ll put it on the list after other worthwhile literature, @miri. Maybe…if I ever get through the required reading of a “high school freshman trying desperately to be intelligent.” Where is my copy of “Slaughterhouse Five” hiding?
    @Oren, I think most of US citizenry, not just Jews, would benefit from experiencing the outdoors more often. There is, to quote Avenue Q, life outside one’s apartment.
    @Vicki, Thank you for noticing my thesis statement, something I wasn’t sure was ringing clear enough through the veil of snark. When it comes down to it, I just don’t think stupid people should be in charge. Plenty of smart people can shoot a gun. Like the many intelligent men and women in our own armed forces, for example.
    @Ruby K, thanks for your thoughtful discussion on my piece. You’re right. I don’t have anything against the blue collar.
    @KRG, thanks. I can’t really drop the snark, so expect more rabid commenting on my sarcastic future posts. It was something of a wake-up call that writing for Jewschool isn’t like the snark-tastic blogging I did when I lived in Israel for a year (Wait, what? SBB’s a Zionist?! Who knew?). It seems Jewschool readership demands a strong, academic presence, something I will bring, sometimes. (Readership – feel free not to read my less-researched, more ranty posts, which I will still write. I dare you to ignore my sophomoric arguments, and not comment on them.)
    By the way, @David AMW, I was raised in a swing state. I’m aware of vibrant Jewish communities outside of the liberal Northeast, as I am still an adjunct member of one myself.
    @Ennui, nice to see there’s someone who gets what I was trying to do. Thanks.
    @Readership, Shavuah tov!

  37. I may be wrong on this, but my understanding of “snark” is that it’s supposed to be both a)reasonably intelligent, or at least intelligible, and b)funny. This post was emphatically neither of those. If this poster feels the need to bring her particular brand of “snark-tastic” writing to the internet, maybe she could do it someplace else.
    Most jewschool readers aren’t kids trying to see how clever (or not) we can be – we’re adults trying to live in and engage with the world around us. Which means, make the sarcasm funny, okay?

  38. No formal education…Attended multiple schools…here are the facts…never let facts get in the way of your hate. G_d must be so proud of you. The Torah commands us not to tell lies about a person, nor even uncomplimentary things that are true. To speak the truth, to fulfill our promises, and not to deceive others.
    Palin attended Hawaii Pacific College — now known as Hawaii Pacific University — in Honolulu, Hawaii, in 1982 for a semester, where she majored in Business Administration, and transferred in 1983 to North Idaho College.
    In 1987, Palin received a Bachelor of Science degree in communications-journalism from the University of Idaho, where she also minored in political science.

  39. Jews hate Sarah Palin because she is the archetypical “White American”. Jews fear a loath White Christian culture.

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