Wednesday, May 12, 2010

This Caricature Is Not Anti-Semitic

A Guest Post By E. Fink

DovBear very adequately addressed many of the issues relating to the protests of RW Jews to the nomination of Elena Kagan. In my opinion there is more to the story here. Most RW Jews are very conservative politically. Kagan is not. Her existence and certainly her appointment the SCOTUS is not viewed favorably in their eyes. Subconsciously, they need a way to protest her appointment and the first thing that pops into their minds is the old "anti-semitism card".

People point to the caricature of her as anti-semitic. People think that it is reminiscent of Nazi propaganda.

It's not.

Nazi propaganda was general. It showed Jews as having certain features and overemphasized those features in order to make a separate point. "Jews steal", "Jews are like vermin", "Jews run the world", etc. The caricature was to paint a villain with gross features and then label the villain with gross acts. It works better than painting the villain with gross acts with a face like Clooney or Pitt...

The cartoon of Kagan is just a cartoon. It exaggerates her features because those are HER features. It's the same way a Leno cartoon has a huge chin and Bush cartoon has a squat head and long ears. It pokes fun at their appearance but is in no way anti-long chin or anti-squat head with long ears. Accentuating Kagan's features in a cartoon can't be off limits because she happens to be Jewish.

A second thing about all this anti-semitism talk is very ironic. I have not seen any reports from mainstream media that even mentions that Kagan is Jewish. It is not an issue for most people. Why do we think that it is an issue? It's like we invent an issue to get upset about. Kagan was chosen because of her credentials and the diversity she brings to the court. Doesn't that champion minorities like Jews? How is that anti-semitic!?

The last thing I want to address is the complaint lodged by a commenter on DovBear's post. Mamzer Talmid Chacham said "I'd still like it better if he nominated someone who was actually a judge". It so happens that one of the greatest SCOTUS justices of all time, Justice Warren, was not a judge. One large criticism of the SCOTUS is the seemingly similar paths all the justices took to get to the court. Choosing Kagan adds another element of much needed diversity to the court.

Search for more information about Jews on the Supreme Court at

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