Sandra Fluke’s Boyfriend Is a Jewy Jew Jew’ - on Brooks Bayne
Sandra Fluke’s Boyfriend Is a Jewy Jew Jew
When Jew-spotting goes (very) south
By Marc Tracy
March 15, 2012
…Bayne isn’t arguing there is something Jewish about socialism. He is relying on the premise that there is something socialistic about Jewishness. That’s why he is citing the mere existence of Jewish names as proof of a socialist conspiracy. This is not historical thinking. It is anti-Semitic thinking. — Marc Tracy
Sometimes, when trying to stretch stories to fit into Tablet Magazine, I engage in what might be termed Jew-spotting or Jew-counting. It’s easier for me than for another writer because of the credibility bought by my presence at this magazine and on its masthead. Still, I try to observe a basic rule: somebody’s Jewishness can never be used as proof for something else about the person. Frequently I’ll try to use shared attributes of a group of people to prove something about Jewishness, but never the other way around. If something is Jewish (pace Lenny Bruce), that’s okay; if Jewish is something, that’s not. Armed with that rule, and with the understanding that Jewishness is extremely dialectical—very sensitive to doubts and criticism, such that its most strident attributes frequently exist alongside their exact opposites (ultra-religious and secular, socialist and free-market, etc.)—I’ve been able to write, I hope convincingly, about the ‘Jewishness’ of subjects as diverse as advanced statistics in sports, of Casablanca, and, by writing about Christopher Hitchens, of radical politics. In this way, I’ve tried to avoid allowing my love of Jews to verge into the sort of philosemitism that Adam Kirsch rightly noted is the dialectical sibling of something far darker.
This blog post, written by Brooks Bayne (I’d never heard of him either, but the guy has nearly 43,000 Twitter followers), is an object lesson in letting ‘Jew’ do the talking. And this would be true if it were written philosemitically, although, of course, it’s written anti-Semitically (and yes, I see on Twitter that Bayne has a Jewish grandmother; because of course there have never been any Jewish anti-Semites)…