Monday, November 24, 2008

Bashing the President-Elect

Today, a friend of mine who made aliyah to Israel a couple of years ago sent his 250-name listserv what I considered to be a very disturbing message. I believe he had forwarded it from someone else. The message described someone who was raised by his mother, raised in one religion but became a Christian, wrote an autobiography, came from rather humble beginnings, and came from outside the political establishment to win election as leader of his nation. Does this sound like the President-Elect? Sure it does, but it also describes the German leader of the 1930's. Here we go again, another horrible email message composed by a Jew, sent by a Jew to more than a hundred other Jews, comparing the President-Elect to Adolf Hitler. Just what we need.
When will the madness stop?
I replied to my friend, who just last week very compassionately wished me the best on my current difficult situation and has been gently persuading me to make aliyah. (He promised to pick me up at TLV.) This is what I told him:

This is a waste of your time.

Good G-d, we Jews need to work with this guy for the next four years. Comparisons to Hitler (may his name be erased)--insulting, embarrassing, totally irrelevant, not helpful at all. When something serious comes up and we call the President for his help, the anti-Israel Arab-Americans who helped elect him are going to be screaming for payback. The last thing we need is for him to find out about the nasty hatred and fear emanating from our community.

Challenge: come up with a single policy initiative that Hitler and the President-Elect have in common. Just one. Empower the middle class? Come on.

I'm serious. I'm saddened. Who comes up with this crap? I'd like to have a word with that guy. BTW I voted for McCain, but he lost the election.

* * *

I was disappointed that the first time I vote for a Republican for president he lost. Like most McCain voters, I'm concerned about the President-Elect's plans for tax increases and government growth, restrictive federal gun laws, and surrender/appeasement policies overseas. That's very different from concern regarding a sudden emergence of the Nuremberg laws, G-d forbid. Are these people behind the email messages worried about Jews being rounded up, G-d forbid? Could we stop? I think a few alarmists (okay, more than a few) need to take a deep breath and think. The President-Elect does not hate Jews. Maybe we're not his favorite white people; choosing Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D.-Ill.) as his right-hand man, however, would seem to dispel that notion. In any case, disagreeing with his policies and comparing him to the most disgusting mass-murderer of the previous century are two very different approaches. I prefer the former and a "wait and see" attitude. Some of my friends are taking a "slash and burn" approach. Does that help? Let's give the President-Elect some time. The moving van hasn't pulled up to 1600 yet, and some of us are pushing the panic button. Wrong, wrong, wrong.

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