(RNS) — Since Donald Trump broke bread with infamous antisemites Ye (the artist previously generally known as Kanye West) and Nick (Guess-Who’s-Coming-To-Dinner) Fuentes, varied Jewish servitors, supporters and apologists have scrambled to distance themselves from the once-and-would-be-future president. I’m speaking in regards to the likes of former ambassador to Israel David Friedman, blogger Ben Shapiro and Morton Klein of the Zionist Group of America.
Now, a few of you might liken this conduct to rats leaving a sinking ship, however I’d say there’s extra to it than that. Antisemitism, like different prejudices, has its nuances.
A good friend of mine who ranks excessive up in a serious Jewish company quips that an antisemite is “somebody who hates Jews greater than mandatory.” A long time in the past, a now retired Jewish professor knowledgeable me that any assertion starting with “Jews are” shall be thought-about antisemitic until it concludes with one thing like “individuals who love their households and worth schooling extremely.”
If the latter feels like one thing out of Dave Chappelle’s current ADL-denounced “Saturday Night Live” monologue, that’s inappropriate. As with the N-word, insiders are allowed to say issues about themselves that outsiders aren’t.
Trump himself is well-known, inside the Jewish world anyway, for making blanket statements about Jews that will get your abnormal non-Jewish president in bother. Like that they’re good dealing with cash and lawyering and are insufficiently supportive of him for all he’s completed for Israel. Final month, he “truthed” that “they need to get their act collectively” and present extra appreciation for the Jewish state “earlier than it’s too late.”
I’ll postulate, then, that Jewish right-wingers don’t proceed to cuddle as much as Trump just because they share Trump’s critique of (most) American Jews. (A few weeks in the past Klein gave him ZOA’s highest award, calling him “the most effective good friend Israel ever had within the White Home.”) It’s additionally as a result of Trump’s Jewish connections are legion, from his late lawyer-mentor Roy Cohn to his still-loyal ex-CFO Allen Weisselberg to, above all, his Jew-by-choice daughter Ivanka and her Jewish-by-birth kids.
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In different phrases, by being Jew-adjacent, he’s been given a cross on these “Jews are” assertions — to say nothing of his winks and nods to Christian white supremacists.
However, however, however … eating with infamous antisemites is a bridge too far.
Members of the Tribe who would do such a factor have historically been denounced as “self-hating Jews.” What about that self-adoring gentile?
“Trump’s Jewish supporters should condemn and disavow him,” ran the headline on Jonathan Tobin’s column for the right-wing Jewish Information Syndicate. “The previous president’s dinner with Jew-haters was a blow to efforts to fight antisemitism.”