Author Archives: Avigayil Halpern

Live from the Lilith Blog

July 3, 2017 by

End the Anecdotes

typewriter-1245894_1920It’s becoming a trend for publications to solicit reader stories. The New York Times has recently begun to fill my Facebook news feed with requests for comments from readers. An example: “Tell us a personal story about raising feminist boys, or ask us a question. We may publish a selection of the responses, and some experts in the field will respond to them.” The resulting article featured a selection of the anecdotes the paper received coupled with responses from “some experts in the field.” Early this month, the Forward put out a call on their website, asking “What makes a college perfect for Jewish students?…The Forward wants to hear from you.” The site provides a Google Form with a survey for students, parents, and professionals to fill out, asking respondents to share what was most and least important in their college selection process.

In a vacuum, it seems innocuous for newspapers to occasionally turn to their readership to gather information about current issues. What better way to learn about feminist parenting or Jewish college choices than to ask feminist parents or Jewish college students to share their stories? These choices by the media are only clearly harmful as they accumulate over time and become increasingly commonplace.

  • 1 Comment
  •  

Live from the Lilith Blog

June 7, 2017 by

Ivanka Shows How “Jewish Woman” Is Not the Same as “Jew”

Photo credit Michael Vadon

Photo credit Michael Vadon

Earlier this year, I—and many others who write for my campus newspaper—received a vitriolic email. The writer ranted about universities and their stifling political correctness, spewed racist claims against immigrants, and railed against Muslims. Then, several paragraphs in, comes this: “the Real Power, which is Jewish Power” [sic]. According to the neo-Nazi who sent the email, “[political correctness] says we are not supposed to notice Jewish power even though Jewish Power rules America.”

The idea that “Jewish power” is a force that secretly controls governments and political movements is an old and noxious trope, classic anti-Semitism. It’s often easy to recognize — my emailer was upset about a purported tactic of “divide-and-rule by Jewish elites.” Sometimes, though, context masks this sentiment: for example, Ivanka Trump.

  • No Comments
  •