Jewish identity

Do some Jews identify as Jews?
One would think that few would doubt the answer to that question is "Yes".
But a subsequent question seems much more controversial:
For Jews who identify as Jews,
does that affect their views?
Again, I at least find it impossible to believe that
the answer to that question is not also "Yes".
But as I said, that answer seems to be unacceptable to some,
who claim it amounts to "anti-Semitism".

Anyhow, here is a little background on the issue and its controversy.

On the issue of Jews pressuring fellow Jews,
consider the
"Hillel Guidelines for Campus Israel Activities".
They would seem to me to constitute pressure on
those Jews who might desire to identify as Jews, join Hillel,
but oppose Hillel's policies on Israel.
This is issue is discussed in the New York Times in
"Members of Jewish Student Group Test Permissible Discussion on Israel"
(2013-12-29) by Laurie Goodstein,
which contains the following:
Hillel, whose core mission is to keep the next generation of Jews in the fold,
says that under its auspices one thing is not open to debate:
Those who reject or repudiate Israel have no place.
In other words, if you don't accept Hillel's policy on this,
get out.

This question of the effect of one's Jewish identity on one's views
became an issue at Stanford University:
Student Coalition at Stanford Confronts Allegations of Anti-Semitism (2015-04-14).
Here is an excerpt (emphasis added), followed by my comments:
Ms. Horwitz [running for a position in the Stanford student government]
said that what happened in the interview with [a group representing some Stanford students]
left her shocked and horrified.
After talking about issues such as student mental health services with the eight representatives,
Ms. Horwitz said, the interview changed topic:
“Given your Jewish identity, how would you vote on divestment?”

“I was really taken aback by the question,
and it took me a minute to process it,
so I asked for clarification to make sure I knew what they were really asking,”
Ms. Horwitz said in an interview.
“They said they saw in my application that I had a strong Jewish identity,
and how would that impact my decision?”

Well, gee, let me try to do a little "processing".
If one has a strong Jewish identity, and is in college,
would one very likely want to join Hillel?
And if one did, would one find that Hillel's policies on Israel,
if articulated sufficiently strongly,
would affect one's own opinions?
In other words, would trying to be a good member of Hillel
affect one's views vis-a-vis the views of a non-Hillel student?
Well, I am certainly not a social psychologist,
but just in my unwashed opinion,
I think the answer is very likely, "Yes".

Does "having s strong Jewish identity" correlate with, and in fact cause,
support for Israel's policies
as they are determined through the Israeli political system?
Am I a raving anti-Semite to think that the answer to that question is:
"Of course they correlate, and consequentially so."?

Personally, I don't think there is anything wrong with asserting, for example,
that Alan Dershowitz's views are no doubt colored by his Jewishness.
You don't have to hate or dislike Jews
to note that they often work together to advance their interests.
You just have to be willing to tell the truth.
It seems to me that what is really being "hated or dislike" is
the truth being spoken in this case.

Anyhow, here are some further articles on this subject:


Does Jewishness matter?
by Kevin MacDonald
Occidental Observer, 2015-04-10


The issue of being questioned about the implications of a Jewish identity
is a bedrock issue for Jews.
The basic fiction is that
we must presume that each individual’s decisions
are solely the result of honest weighing of evidence,
uninfluenced by ethnic, religious, or other identities.

This is an obvious fiction for pretty much everyone,
although White people seem more prone than others
to consider the other person’s point of view.
(Because of their individualistic tendencies
that promote scientific [i.e., unbiased, objective] views of reality
in which group interests are irrelevant,
White people are arguably less prone to such tendencies.)

Jews are certainly no exception.
Jews often have viewpoints that derive from their identity as Jews.
Nevertheless, the absurdity that they do not
is a bedrock principle of contemporary political correctness.


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