One thing I always find remarkable when interacting with religious Jews is how racist they are. I don’t know which is more shocking: that a group so frequently singled out and persecuted has no problem dishing it out themselves, or that many of them don’t even see their bigoted views as racism.
While I could point out the tendency of Jews to call various outsiders by rather derogatory terms like shiksa, sheigetz, or shvartze (or other things that don’t begin with sh-), this isn’t universal… or even that big of a deal. They’re just words, and plenty of religious Jews aren’t like that, especially the younger generations.
However, a surprising amount of it apparently still runs rampant in closed Jewish communities. See, for example, this thread found by my wife on a forum of religious Jews discussing the origin of black people, and in particular the remarks made by Jude, the third comment on the page.
Individual racism of this sort aside, another thing that sets Jews apart as being so racist is their stance on “intermarriage.” If it was just Jews wanting to marry other Jews, it would be one thing (still racist, in my opinion, but not that big of a deal). However, it goes beyond one’s own personal choices in the Jewish community.
This “moral” opposition to other peoples’ intermarriage isn’t some hypothetical bigotry, it’s bigotry I have observed in every single religious Jew I ever discussed the matter with, and it is bigotry I have experienced firsthand. My wife’s parents wouldn’t meet me before our marriage, wouldn’t attend the wedding, and have only met me twice during our five year relationship… because I am not part of their race. Despite living further away, my wife has met my parents many times more than I have met hers.
It’s a common ignorance in Judaism: there is immense hostility towards Jews marrying non-Jews (coupled with a distrust of the non-religious and ethnically non-Jewish altogether). Generally, the more religious, the more hostility there seems to be. I haven’t noticed more than a “preference” for fellow Jews among the non-religious and less religious, while the more conservative/orthodox will commonly disown family not only for marrying outside of the Jewish people, but sometimes for marrying outside the very specific Jewish tradition of the family.
It’s ridiculous, really. I have seen minor pressure in other contexts. I had Mexican friends whose mothers wanted them to marry a nice Mexican girl, and the same goes for Italians and Greeks, not to mention religious Catholics and Episcopalians. I also know many people from India feel pressure from their parents to marry an Indian. Even my Catholic mom asked me once to marry a Catholic girl and get married in the Catholic Church; I never dated a Catholic again.
However, I never see the vicious consequences in these other demographics that I see among religious Jews. There might be snide remarks, but that is a far cry from being written out of the will. The only times I have seen such open hostility for intermarriage was in a few families of rural whites in Indiana, who I suspect of being KKK members. That basically puts religious Jews on par with white-supremacists in my mind. I see Jews as being akin to rednecks in kippas.
It’s blatantly inappropriate to harbor such racial intolerance in this day and age. One Jewish apologist for this practice recently commented on my blog:
“I would care if my child married a gentile because I personally believe that Judaism deserves to survive. We as a people have been through so much, and to die out due to intermarriage rather than mass-murder or Nazis would be very ironic.”
What’s ironic is that trying to encourage your children to breed only among members of a group that calls itself “God’s Chosen People” sounds eerily like a “Master Race.” This pressure to marry within one’s race is what is really ironic, given the history of Jewish oppression at the hands of Nazis, which included being legally barred from marrying non-Jews. This commenter thinks Hitler wins if Jews marry non-Jews, and yet… Hitler seems to have liked the idea of Jews sticking to their own kind… it’s a strange and backwards argument, to be sure.
When Jews marry non-Jews, Jews don’t die out, they remain genetically diverse. As it is, Jewish populations harbor a handful of unusual genetic diseases that are the result of inbreeding. It’s not like a little new blood will hurt you guys. What’s more, it’s seems very antagonistic to those of us who want to accept Jews into our culture when they are openly hostile to their children marrying us dirty, dirty gentiles.
It’s insulting, it’s rude, it’s discourteous to everyone (Jews and goy alike), and it’s downright barbaric to hold such primitive, tribal stances regarding marriage. The Jewish community ought to be ashamed on this matter. This is a shonda on you and your people. Why is this sort of behavior acceptable?
It’s the same reason for their other great race problem.
Jews had a tough run of it in WWII… and for centuries prior… and that’s putting it mildly. It’s fair to say Jews experienced some of the worst cruelty in human history during the Holocaust. No one’s questioning the reality of the suffering of millions at the hands of the Nazis.
Jews may have gotten a free pass on being a little racist given their past, and if it was just about marriage and some Yiddish slang, I might not care. But ultimately, the greatest geopolitical atrocity since WWII has been the formation and violent expansion of Israel, and Jewish racism is at the heart of this matter. With the continuous war crime that is the Nation of Israel, Jews are accruing a huge moral deficit that not even the Holocaust will be able to cover.
In very few nations is apartheid still the law of the land. No other nation has a secret nuclear weapons program that goes unchecked. But perhaps most annoying to me, all of the atrocities Israel is responsible for are funded in part by American taxpayers. I’m funding your racism, and I want it to stop.
I’m not saying this stuff to bother anyone, I’m just trying to help. If you aren’t racist, if you have no problem with Jews marrying non-Jews, and if you oppose the oppression of the Palestinian people, then please know I’m not talking about you. I don’t hold a grudge against the Jewish people. I mean, come on… you guys killed Jesus. That makes you pretty cool in my book.
And before you get all offended, I’m doing this as a favor to Jews. I spend most of my time talking about Christianity, and I figured you guys deserved some attention. I asked my wife what she thought, and she couldn’t agree more. I mean… her father bought a gun because he was worried the blacks would riot.
That said, feel free to leave any comments or e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org), since if there’s one thing I know about religious Jews (besides how unabashedly racist so many of them are), it’s that they love to tell people when they’re offended.