Sam Schulman for Jewish World Review argues that Jewish votes for Democrats speed the process by which the Democratic Party becomes the natural home for anti-Semitic sentiment. His argument is that the Dems take the Jewish vote for granted and thus feel free to pander to anti-Semitic elements. Schulman describes three such elements. First, populists connected to anti-Semitic elements within the Black community and the Arab-American population (e.g. Cynthia McKinney). Second, self-proclaimed idealists like Jimmy Carter. Third, the left-wing anti-war crowd “motivated by hatred of Israel, hatred of America, and inborn affection for bullying that is at the basis of all Socialism.” Of particular concern to Schulman is the fact that elite universities, whose divestment movements equate Israel with the South Africa of 25 years ago, are becoming the “seedbeds of the new, high-minded anti-Semitism” whose leaders “will soon be dominating the Democratic Party.”
Schulman perceives the problem clearly, but errs I think when he suggests that Jews can prevent the Democratic party from welcoming these enemies by making Dems work for their vote. The elements that concern Schulman have already been welcomed by the Democrats, and I suspect that Democratic strategists are resigned to the erosion of support among Jews. They expect it to occur slowly and they are probably right. But fast or slow, they understand that the erosion will be more than offset by the support gained from the constituencies described above. Jewish money is another matter, but the wealthiest Jews tend to be the most opaque, and the Democrats know that the Barbra Streisand’s will be there for them no matter what. For the rest of us, the best thing we can do as Jews is to abandon the Democrats sooner rather than later, so that the Party pays the full consequences of its inevitable capture by anti-Semitic elements.
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