Jewish Journal

JewishJournal.com is ‘not a Jew hating site per se’

by Brad A. Greenberg

December 19, 2008 | 4:44 pm

I really shouldn’t direct readers to the new blog from Martini “Kike” Leaf. But his most recent post is just too much It’s called the Bernie Madoff Blog, but really it’s just a forum for ranting against me and The Jewish Journal. A sampling:

Jew Haters are having a field day with the Madoff allegations. One Jew hating poster from a Jew Hating Web Site had the following to say:

In doing all this, Madoff soiled the very word, “Jew.”

“The greatest American Jewish crime since the Rosenbergs,” .... An exaggeration? The Rosenbergs were traitors to the nation’s defense, Madoff to our financial system. But Madoff, with his posturing involvement in Yeshiva University, makes the Jewish claim to ethical standards look like a bad joke. The saving grace is that, ... at least many of his victims are Jews.

For readers inclined to come to the defense of the supposedly soiled Jewish people,I have to reveal that I lied. The above quote was taken from an editorial in The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, not from a Jew Hating site per se. The Jewish Journal touts itself as the largest American Jewish publication outside of New York City. If that quote wasn’t bad enough, it is even worse that the above quote was from Mr. Rob Eshman, an editorial writer for the Jewish Journal.

I know. I was laughing out loud too.

Leaf, a real mensch, goes on to attack me again and say Rob is “delusional, presumptuous, and foolish for proclaiming anything about the word ‘Jew’” and attacks the Journal and other “Jewish” publications for suggesting that Madoff’s alleged crime says something negative about Jewish values. Oddly, I haven’t read anywhere but in the comments section here and on the white-wing blogs any denigration of Judaism and observance of the law. What I have seen is constructive introspection:

“The Jewish community better get serious about the cancer that’s growing inside it. The devastation on Wall Street carries a lot of Jewish names, from firms like Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers to individuals such as Bernard Madoff, whose $50 billion Ponzi scheme collapsed last week, and lawyer Marc Dreier, arrested Dec. 7 for defrauding investors of hundreds of millions of dollars,” Rabbi Shmuley Boteach writes.

“On the Internet, more and more people who don’t like us are beginning to connect the dots, pointing out that there are an awful lot of Jews who bear responsibility for Wall Street’s fall. But that’s not what bothers me. Anti-Semites will always find something to hate us for, and I’m way too busy to worry about what a bunch of bigots think anyway.

“Rather, what worries me is this: What if some of it is true? What if our community has become too obsessed with money? What if our values have become about wearing the most expensive Cartier watch and driving a souped-up Mercedes? What if a disproportionately large number of young Jews are running to work on Wall Street and never even considering jobs like teaching, the rabbinate or outreach because the compensation, comparatively, stinks?”

I’m not really sure what planet Leaf, who arrived here over the weekend, lives on. His comments wreak of not only Jewish supremacism but intra-Jewish exclusiveness He has said Madoff is getting lynch mobbed; has never heard of Rabbi David Wolpe and attaches air-quotes to religious title of Rabbi Elliot Dorff; and appears to think any argument can be won by citing statistics that suggest Jews have higher-than-average IQs. I don’t dispute that last point; I just don’t see how it’s relevant.

“The funny thing,” a friend said to me after reach Leaf’s comments, “is that his argument is almost exactly Hitler’s”

But I must tip my hat to Leaf. He outed me for the “Jew-hater” I really am. It took 20 months of covering the heart of LA Jewish life for somebody to realize I was not only a fraud but a cancer. Just reading the words I wrote, he knew, before even realizing I was Christian, that I was a Jew-hater. Bravo, Mr. Leaf.

Then again, Leaf seems to believe anyone with a Jewish perspective other than his wishes they had never been circumcised. Here he is berating a Jew he later refers to as Heil Heller:

“You are a self hating Jew. The gentiles can be Jew haters, that is all too common, but there is something even worse about a self hating Jew. You mean to say that the gentile auto execs are not as crooked as any other type of executives ? Or maybe the fact that Arafat stole billions from the Palestinians was just abberent non Jewish behavior? To say that Jews should be better than other people is in and of itself racist. Of course all religious people of any faith should be held to the higher standards religious people represent. Was the governor of Illinois Jewish, or the mayor of Detroit ? Get a Jewish backbone Mr. Heller and stop being so afraid of being Jewish.”

* Updated: That image is of our satirical Purim cover from this spring. Believe it or not, there are members in the community who refer to us as the “Jewish” Journal and the Not Jewish Journal. This is to be expected. Jews have sayings like “two Jews, three opinions” and “one Jew, two synagogues.” Inevitably, we can’t please everyone.

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