Friday, September 30, 2011

Wilful Ignorance?

1. According to an AJC (American Jewish Congress) poll, 59.5% of American Jews disapprove of Obama's handling of the economy, with 39.5% approving. When asked about Obama's dealings with Israel, 53% of American Jews disapprove, and 40% approve. Overall, 45% approve of Obama's job as president, with 48% disapproving.

Now,logically, one might expect from these poll numbers that the potential republican candidates would garner at least 50% of the vote from American Jews if the election was being held today. One would be wrong, however. Obama gets the usual 75% to 80% Jewish vote against all comers, except for Romney who gets 32.1%. But even against Romney Obama still gets over 2/3 of the Jewish vote. (Poll data reported in the 9/26/11 Jewish Press online.) How is this possible with such low approval ratings?

As we have noted many times before, it is so ingrained in many American Jews that democrat = good and republican = bad, that neither facts nor logic nor common sense will have any impact on the outcome. Yet, you say, their positions are inconsistent: they disapprove of Obama on major issues, and overall, yet they will still vote for him. Consistency is NOT highly rated by the left, as numbers 2 and 3 below also demonstrate.

2. The 9/23/11 New York Times lead editorial argues for the need for a Palestinian state. While they say that negotiations are the best way for them to get a state, they note that the negotiations have stalled. And while "there is plenty of blame to go around...the main responsibility right now belongs to Benjamin Netanyahu who refuses to make any serious compromises for peace." Now, factually, the Times is simply incorrect. But that is another matter (and also typical of this paper).

What I find more interesting is Times' push for a Palestinian state when the Palestinian representative to the United States recently said that their new state would allow no Jews and no gays. Now, I know "no Jews" does not bother the New York Times. But no gays? The Times has been extremely supportive of every gay rights position, whether it be abolishing "don't ask, don't tell," or measures supporting gay marriage. So doesn't it appear that the New York Times is being (here's that word again) inconsistent? How can they possibly be in favor of a state that will have NO gay rights - because there will be no gays?

Again, consistency in beliefs is not an issue for the Left. And, unfortunately for the gays, there is one group that the Times will support over all others: Muslims. One reader has advised me of a gay person he knows who, incredibly, is also supportive of the muslims. Think that's odd? Not for the left, as also seen in number 3 below.

3. So, as we know, the Arabs/Muslims are not particularly fond of Jews or gays. In fact, a 2008 Pew Research poll reflected that between 95% to 97% of Jordanians, Egyptians and Lebanese hate Jews. (As reported by Caroline Glick in the 9/28/11 Jerusalem Post online.) A 2006 Pew poll found that while only 7% of Britains had negative views of Jews, the number jumped to 47% among British Muslims. (In France the numbers were 13% and 28% and in Germany 22% and 44%.) (From the same Glick article.) Glick reports that in 2010 Muslims were 4.6% of the British population, but committed 39% of the anti-semitic acts. And Pew reported that 37% of UK Muslims say British Jews are legitimate targets; with only 30% expressing disagreement.

Glick argues that the Arabs/Muslims are not particularly fond of blacks either. At a Palestinian rally in Ramallah after Abbas' return from the UN, there were posters of Obama depicting him as a monkey, and describing him as "the first Jewish President of the US." She notes that when Condoleezza Rice was Secretary of State, she too was depicted as a monkey. All of which pales in comparison to the genocide of blacks committed by the Muslims of Sudan.

So, to recap, Muslims do not like/hate Jews; but also pretty much feel the same way about two groups of whom American Jews have been highly supportive: blacks and gays. So does any of this affect American Jews' perceptions of Muslims? Of course not! In an August, 2011 Gallup poll, 80% of American Jews have favorable views of Muslims. 80%! (From the Glick article.) Yet, if you ask these Jews who constitutes the biggest threat to them and to Judaism, they will undoubtedly tell you that it is the Catholic Church and Evangelical Christians. (Even though Glick notes surveys showing anti-semitism among Evangelicals is less than that of the general population.) So, inconsistency in beliefs among American Jews, yet again? Absolutely. The problem, of course, is that this inconsistency reflects a much deeper problem - an inability to recognize true threats to one's very existence.

(And as an aside, another group favored by Jews is the democrat party. Yet a survey by the Institute for Jewish and Community Research (a group based in San Francisco no less) reports that democrats are more likely to be anti-semitic than republicans. Yet, such findings would never interfere with Jews support for that group either; as we have previously reported, rank and file republicans are very supportive of Israel, while only a minority of democrats are.)

Wilful ignorance? You tell me.