Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
The common wisdom is that CNN’s Rick Sanchez was fired because he made anti-Semitic remarks. That’s an understandable assumption, but it’s also untrue. Sanchez was fired because he attacked a celebrity more liberal and more popular than he is. That he did it with racial overtones made it easy for CNN to pull the plug on him. But his real crime was that he had become an embarrassment, from a liberal perspective, and that’s the only perspective in the media that counts.
Let’s imagine that Sanchez was a trendy liberal comedian with his own influential show and Jon Stewart, the subject of his remarks, was just another CNN talking head. In that case, Sanchez could have said the same thing about the Jews and it would have been a laugh line. He would have kept his job and Stewart would have been at risk of losing his, despite being the goat. Because this isn’t about Jews, it’s about liberals controlling the license to be bigots.
Absent in the media after the firing of Sanchez were the defensive reactions of the sort that followed the earlier termination of CNN’s Octavia Nasr or the disgrace of Helen Thomas. There was little ambiguity in the reporting. Sanchez was bad and had to go. But Sanchez’s remarks were certainly not unique. The director Oliver Stone said much worse things not too long ago, suggesting the “Jewish dominated media”overemphasizes the Holocaust. And for that he wasn’t removed from any projects or otherwise inconvenienced. What’s the difference between Oliver Stone and Rick Sanchez? Stone’s liberal credentials are unimpeachable.
If you’re a liberal, you’re allowed to be racist toward people less liberal than you. Had Sanchez accused Jews of running the media and of suppressing negative stories about Israel or promoting a negative view of Obama because they’re racists, there would have been talk of how courageous he was in tackling controversial issues. Those comments are completely false, of course, but they would have played into a liberal worldview.
Instead, Sanchez talked about the Jews controlling the media in relation to himself. Which might have been acceptable if he had some serious liberal credentials and if he hadn’t been blasting Jon Stewart, whose own liberal credentials far exceed his. Liberal media personalities routinely make racist and sexist remarks and get away with it. They only get in trouble when they target someone more liberal than them or when their own liberal creds are wanting.
Sanchez’s mistake was overestimating his place in the liberal ecosystem. He assumed that because he had blasted the Tea Party movement, and called Hispanics who work for Fox News sellouts, he had the same status as Stewart. That was a mistake, one he paid for dearly. Stewart outdraws Sanchez as a liberal opinion-maker by a factor of 10 to 1. Picking between Sanchez and Stewart was a no-brainer for CNN. Not because Sanchez was bigoted, but because he wasn’t liberal enough.
The reaction to Sanchez had nothing to do with Jews and everything to do with liberalism. Had he gone after The New Republic’s Martin Peretz, who has been critical of Obama, he would have been fine. Had he claimed Jews pushed America into the war in Iraq, he would have been expressing a sentiment common among liberals. He had plenty of victims to choose from, but he picked someone with a higher liberal status than his. And so he got creamed.
Liberalism is a form of privilege. It means you belong to the political and cultural elite. It means you’re one of the gang. And it comes with its perks. One of those perks is the power to proclaim what behavior is culturally acceptable. By pretending to be warriors against racism, liberals have been able to define what racism is (thoughts or statements attributed to people less liberal than they are) and what it isn’t (thoughts or statements attributed to people as liberal as – or even moreliberal than – they are).
Rick Sanchez falsely attributed Jon Stewart’s sense of privilege to Stewart’s Jewishness rather than his liberalism. And as stupid as that was, it was the smarter thing to do. Sanchez was fired, but he’s still employable. Had he talked about liberal control of the media the way Bernard Goldberg has, he would be unemployable on any major news network outside of Fox News.
Jews don’t run the media, liberals do. Some of those liberals happen to be Jewish, some of them happen to be Catholic or Protestant, and almost none of them have very much use for religion, traditional values or America itself.
As is true of every elite, joining the media requires adopting a new identity and giving up old allegiances. And every elite has a pecking order. It has rules for what you can and can’t do. Rick Sanchez broke those rules by taking aim at a man who had become a liberal icon, and doing it in a way that embarrassed CNN. And like most people who break the unspoken code of their particular jungle and don’t have the status to back it up, he got kicked to the curb.
Because as liberal as Sanchez may be, when it came to a showdown with Jon Stewart, he just wasn’t liberal enough.
Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli-born artist, writer and freelance commentator on political affairs with a special focus on Jewish concerns and the War on Terror. He maintains a blog at www.sultanknish.blogspot.com.
About the Author: Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli born blogger and columnist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His work covers American, European and Israeli politics as well as the War on Terror. His writing can be found at http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press.
If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.
Comments are closed.
The answer is an emphatic no.
The meaning of “God’s watch” here is not entirely clear.
Don’t Israelis and Arab Palestinians deserve more than this? Is it not time to stop the insanity?
At age 104, my mother was still concerned about her relationship with Hashem.
Obama’s incompetence, the way his naive worldview and credulity have made a fool of him, are equally frightening
“The only difference between this world and the time of Meshiach is our bondage to the gentile kingdoms.”
You’ve discovered our little secret!
Klein’s challenger has demonstrated a propensity to unleash poisonous vitriol, even to other Zionists
President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy.
Welcome the book of Leviticus!
If the nationalist Knesset members don’t provide the answer, the Arab MKs will do so in their place.
International Agunah Day falls annually on Ta’anis Esther, this year on March 13.
Yeshiva University Museum recently hosted an exhibit titled “Threshold to the Sacred.”
Even a foxhole Yid has to admit that antisemitism is on the upswing.
We’ve become very good at symptom management and at not thinking about the underlying problem.
Mohammed beheaded Mahuddin Mahmud making it a case of Mohammed on Mohammed violence.
At the Benghazi hearings, Hillary famously demanded to know what difference it made. The same can be said of her life.
With Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party already has an Anti-Obama in waiting.
The constant expansion and destructive acquisition of small innovative companies maintains the illusion that the latest digital horse is something special.
The JFK assassination became a liberal martyrdom in search of a conservative inquisitioner.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/it-all-comes-down-to-how-liberal-you-are/2010/10/20/
Scan this QR code to visit this page online:
No related posts.