Under the volcano

It’s not a pretty sight when left-wing gangbangers march into action to destroy admirable men, but they really have it down to a science. Our radio hero Hugh Hewitt has manfully sought to counter the brigades out to humiliate and destroy General Boykin. The same phenomenon is at work with respect to New Republic senior editor Gregg Easterbrook.
Over the weekend Steve Hayward wrote about Easterbrook and his current ordeal on No Left Turns. Steve’s words of support and the comments of Rocket Man and Deacon below will have to serve as our last words on the subject for the time being, but we will return to it as events warrant.
HINDROCKET adds: I’ve only now read Easterbrook’s original piece, which is here. It is not anti-semitic; not even remotely so. The column is an attack on Quentin Tarantino and his latest movie, Kill Bill. After noting that the people who run Disney and its Miramax subsidiary are Jewish, Easterbrook said: “Recent European history alone ought to cause Jewish executives to experience second thoughts about glorifying the killing of the helpless as a fun lifestyle choice.” The point may or may not be well taken, but it certainly isn’t anti-semitic. I suspect that what outraged Michael Eisner more than the reference to his religion was Easterbrook’s observation on the politics of Eisner and other Hollywood liberals: “…the supposed liberal progressives of this city now ceaselessly mass-market presentations of butchering the helpless as a form of entertainment, even, as rewarding self-expression.” That’s hitting them where they live.
DEACON adds: I don’t think it is anti-semitic either. It probably falls into that amorphous category known as “insensitive.” As a Jew, I don’t enjoy seeing the juxtaposition of the phrases “Jewish executives” and “worship money above all else,” nor do I appreciate statements that might be construed as suggesting that the persecution of Jews gives rise to any special obligation to forebear from lawful economic activity. That said, I have never believed that writers should be punished for mere insensitivity, especially when they apologize for it. Clearly, the apparent punishment of Easterbrook does not fit the offense, if any. A number of factors seem to be conspiring against Easterbrook here. One may be the opportunity for liberals who are leading the charge against Israel to re-establish their bona fides on matters Jewish. In my opinion, our readers should certainly consider coming to Easterbrook’s defense.


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