Non-White critics of the recent Hollywood remake of Wonder Woman, specifically the casting of former Miss Israel Gal Gadot in the lead role, prompted an argument among jews whether Gadot and jews more generally are “white”.
Nothing about their exchange will surprise regular readers here, but it may help educate Whites who are just beginning to grapple with identity, race, and the jew problem. Under the current anti-White/pro-jew regime most Whites are conditioned to be more comfortable hearing jews complain about “anti-semitism” and their White problem, rather than the other way around. So here you go, this conversation is for you.
If you can look beyond the superficial details – this actress, this movie, in 2017 – what you’ll get here is a glimpse of jewing across space and time. It’s easy to imagine the countless similar debates jews have had in their shtetls and ghettos over the past millennia – though instead of Whiteness at these times and places they would have been arguing about whether or not Babylonianess, Egyptianess, Greekness, Romaness, Spanishness, Russianess, or Germaness was good or bad for the jews.
The links are presented in chronological order. Most of the articles are referring and responding to each other, so the excerpts below capture the most relevant, least redundant portions of the exchange. Even so, it’s a long read. If at any point you get bored or nauseous then by all means skip to the end where I’ll sum up the key points.
The back-and-forth started (seemingly out of the blue) a few months before focusing on and expanding around Gadot.
24 Jan 2017, Dani Ishai Behan, timesofisrael.com: Are Jews A People of Color?:
For as long as we can remember, our people have always occupied a racially “ambiguous” position in North America. Although at first we were considered ‘Asiatics’ alongside other West Asian ethnic groups (leading to numerous attempts at denaturalizing us), lobbying efforts would eventually expand the definition of White to include Middle Easterners and North Africans. However, a political climate has emerged in recent decades wherein our racial status is once again mired in bitterness and uncertainty.
All throughout history, the racial othering of Jews has led to some pretty horrific results, so it is understandable why some would prefer to leave race/ethnicity out of the equation altogether. But at the same time, conceptualizing Jews as either “white” or “just a religion”, as many of our detractors are wont to do, helps to perpetuate a culture of antisemitism on the anti-racist left. That is to say, if we are “just white people with funny hats”, then we are perforce not “really” an oppressed group, thereby enabling anti-racists to retain their credentials without having to listen to Jews or take our concerns seriously. This construct is also inextricably tied up in antisemitic politics, reifying notions of Jewish “privilege” along with the (incorrect) aspersion that Israel’s re-establishment was a “white colonial” project, implying that Ashkenazic Jews (who made up the majority of pre-1948 Zionist olim) are foreign interlopers with no real roots in the region and whose attachment to the land is, at best, inauthentic, inorganic, and exclusively religious in nature.
Another argument that is frequently made is that a large percentage of us have white-ish appearances, but this is fairly common among all Levantine groups, not just Jews. Moreover, fair skinned Latinos, Iranians, Pashtuns, and Native Americans aren’t exactly rare either. This is called “white passing”: the ability to blend in and escape some of the more immediate effects of non-whiteness while still suffering from the marginalization and othering that non-Jewish minorities experience. To put it another way, looking white is not the same as being white.
I’ve heard all of the arguments for Jewish “whiteness”, but I have yet to hear one that is truly convincing.
1 June 2017, Matthew Mueller, comicbook.com, Wonder Woman: There IS A Person Of Color In The Lead Role:
Yep, with a quick google search, it turns out that Gal Gadot is not actually Caucasian, but is in fact Israeli.
Gadot was born in Rosh Ha’ayin, Israel, and served in the Israeli Defense Force for two years before winning Miss Israel in 2004. Yes, she won Miss Israel, but she isn’t a person of color? You get why that doesn’t make sense, right?
Simply put: LOOKING White, doesn’t mean you ARE white
1 June 2017, S.I. Rosenbaum, twitscreech, starts here:
oh my god ok OFFICIAL EXPLANATION OF ASHKENAZI ETHNICITY: 1/????
When modern racial categories were being invented in Europe ~1492, they stuck Ashkenazim and Sephardic Jews in a separate category.>
Up til WW2 Ashkenazim were viewed by whites as a racial category distinct from “white” and “colored.” >
In the U.S, Ashkenazim have been assimilated to some extent to WASP culture and gradually afforded “white” status (on a conditional basis)>
We have many of the privileges of “regular” whites. Probably the best way to think of Ashkenazim in America is “white passing.” >
But even when we’re “not white” we’re not “of color.” We revert to that separate racial category outside the “white/colored” dichotomy. >
2 June 2017, Noah Berlatsky, forward.com, Why Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman Is White / Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman Is White — Let’s Not Pretend Otherwise:
The whiteness of “Wonder Woman” doesn’t seem up for debate. And yet, some have decided to debate it. An argument has been bubbling underground on social media that Gal Gadot, who plays the title role, is actually a person of color. It was aired in full by Matthew Mueller at comicbook.com. “Gal Gadot is not actually Caucasian, but is in fact Israeli,” Mueller announces confidently. He then goes on to chastise POC critics for not recognizing her casting as triumph for diverse representation.
Mueller doesn’t actually have much of an argument. He mentions a Times of Israel blog post which points to the history of Jewish oppression and waffles back and forth on whether Jews might be considered POC. But mostly Mueller just announces “Gadot is Israeli!” like a magician pulling a piece of lint out of a hat and trying to convince you it’s a rabbit.
Mueller can get away with this slapdash approach because race is itself such an incoherent concept. Mueller argues that “Caucasian” equals “white,” as if whiteness is an actual ethnicity or regional background.
But the truth is that whiteness isn’t a biological or historical truth; it’s a fuzzy, culturally determined category that has fluctuated widely over time. At various historical moments and in various places, Irish people, Eastern Europeans, Southern Europeans, and, of course, Jews, have been excluded from the category of “white people.” It may seem ridiculous to say that a nationality like “Israeli” is non-white—but Donald Trump racialized the nationality of Mexicans during the 2016 campaign. Whiteness isn’t a formally defined, logical system. It’s a blunt instrument designed to enable some people to hurt others. As such, it doesn’t have to be particularly elegant or well made.
In this context, the best definition of white people is simply “people who are considered white.”
Perhaps the clearest sign that Gadot is white, though, is Mueller’s own argument. The fact that some groups who were once seen as non-white have become white and successful is a constant talking point for people who don’t want to deal with ongoing racism. Robert Kennedy famously pointed to the success of the Irish to deflect James Baldwin’s criticisms of racism in the United States. The very incoherence of whiteness becomes a way to defend whiteness. “Our ideology makes no sense; therefore we can’t actually be oppressing you” is a ridiculous argument, but a consistently popular one.
Gadot is white. But that’s not to say that Jews face no discrimination. On the contrary, Gadot’s casting illustrates the quieter, ongoing failures of Jewish representation in superhero films. As I’ve discussed here before, Hollywood seems constitutionally incapable of casting a Jewish actor to play a Jewish hero whose Jewishness is narratively acknowledged. Gadot can be Wonder Woman only if she sets aside her Jewishness as a visible identity. Heroism is only available as a reward for assimilation.
The Wonder Woman film challenges the idea that only men can be heroes. But it accepts the conventional wisdom that says that, to be a hero, you must disappear into whiteness. That’s a message that hurts people of color. And it’s a message that ultimately hurts Jews who are not people of color as well.
4 June 2017, Dani Ishai Behan, timesofisrael.com, Yes, Ashkenazi Jews (Including Gal Gadot) Are People of Color:
Jews are a historically persecuted and displaced Middle Eastern ethnicity indigenous to Israel, as well as one of the oldest and most continuous victims of European colonialism. However, the “anti-racist” left is generally hostile to Jews (particularly Ashkenazim aka Jews who wound up in Central and Eastern Europe as a result of colonialism) identifying as Middle Eastern, as a people of color, or even as a minority at all.
Now let us take a look at the history and heritage of Ashkenazi Jews. An indigenous people of the Middle East, Ashkenazi Jews were driven out of their homeland by European (and later Arab) colonists and taken as slaves to Europe where they were consistently regarded as savages, periodically massacred, and excluded from society on the grounds that they are a foreign, non-Christian, and non-European (or in the words of our European oppressors: Oriental/Asiatic) presence on European soil. The above-mentioned race categories created during the Inquisition were really a direct response to the possibility that the Spanish crown hadn’t successfully expelled ALL of the Jews and Moors in their midst. As such, an edict called “limpieza de sangre” (“purity of blood”) was made law, wherein anyone of non-European descent (i.e. Jewish or Arab-Moor) was given the ultimatum of conversion to Christianity or death. And even those Jews who did convert were still viewed with suspicion, and treated as second class.
The acknowledgement that Ashkenazim are non-European/non-white, which really dates all the way back to the pre-Christian era, continued to pervade Western society into the Enlightenment era and beyond. A few choice quotes from some of the more notable European philosophers (as well as some who are less notable) should prove instructive….
Behan here quotes past remarks on the jew problem from several prominent White men, whom he calls “anti-semites” because they recognized jews as alien and/or harmful to their people.
Furthermore, in this new era of political correctness, and with full knowledge that Jews stood much to gain from the Western left’s newfound respect for indigenous rights and protection of disadvantaged minorities, those whose hearts continued to smolder with antisemitism changed course and cast Jews as “white Europeans”, thereby allowing them to continue ostracizing us a backwards, oppressive, powerful, and malignant force.
Back to Rosenbaum, she goes on to assert that Ashkenazim enjoy all of the “regular privileges” white people do, which is false. She is conflating the ability to pass (a common trait for certain POC groups, especially other Middle Easterners – Jews aren’t “special” here) with actually being white, despite her earlier concession that they’re not the same thing.
Granted, some Ashkenazim – as well as some non-Ashkenazim – do have ambiguous or ostensibly “white” facial features, which are mainly the result of Cossack rapes during pogroms, and can therefore camouflage themselves, but a very large number cannot. As can be seen in the link I just posted, many either have a “Jewish” appearance, or a full blown Middle Eastern one. Moreover, having to hide one’s ethnic background just to be treated as a “normal” human being is not privilege, because white people (*actual* white people, not Jews, Arabs, etc) don’t have to do this. They don’t need to change their names, or flatten their noses, or bleach their skin, or straighten their hair, or take their kippahs off, etc. The fact that Ashkenazim, and white passing Jews in general, need to *work* just to be seen as regular people really says it all, and many (if not most) don’t even have the ability to do that. It’s simply not comparable.
More to the point, Jews are perhaps the oldest victims of what has come to be known as Orientalism. From the Greek and Roman colonial era where we were deemed “savages” in need of culture and enlightenment, to the evolution of these views under Christianity, to Enlightenment era Europeans openly declaring that we are Asiatics who are therefore culturally stagnant and incapable of reason, science, or progress, Orientalism has always been the bedrock of European antisemitism.
All in all, we mustn’t make the mistake of assuming Jews enjoy “white privilege” just because our experiences are not symmetrical with those of African-Americans or Hispanics, as to do so would be unreasonable, fallacious, and hypocritical (again, no other ethnic minority is held to this standard). Anti-Jewish racism looks different because the stereotypes are different. In other words, we are not viewed by society as “uneducated thugs”, but as “dishonest”, “conniving”, “clannish”, and “bloodthirsty” mongrels who control everything behind the scenes, and these racist tropes play out in the way we are treated in this country. Moreover, we are frequently profiled at airports, viewed with suspicion when we are too successful, assumed to be in control of the US government, assaulted on the streets, typecast on TV and in movies (barring a number of exceptions) as geeks, criminals, hypochondriacs, and other stereotypes, our scalps are molested for horns by strangers, and so on and so forth.
Inasmuch as a group’s non-whiteness is contingent on their history, experiences, heritage, and relationship with the concept of “white” as defined by its pioneers, Ashkenazim certainly do qualify as a non-white people.
But unlike Rosenbaum, Noah’s arguments invoke – intentionally or otherwise – the very popular antisemitic myth that Gadot (and presumably all Ashkenazim) is an ethnic European, not a Semite/Middle Easterner. And as I previously noted here, being exiled/taken as slaves to Europe and raped during pogroms after our land was taken from us does not make Ashkenazim white, or European. To brazenly conflate any portion of our people with those who tried for so long to erase us is one of the worst insults you could possibly hurl at a Jew. It is literally giving Europeans antisemites the very thing they’ve wanted all along – for us to be whitewashed and ultimately disappear.
That aside, Berlatsky himself doesn’t seem too sure of what whiteness actually is, wildly oscillating back and forth between “it’s all about appearance” and “it’s complicated”. For instance, he initially disputes the idea that whiteness “is an actual ethnicity or regional background”, only to later contradict himself within the same piece by declaring Gadot to be “white” because she is fair skinned and “European” (even though Ashkenazi Jews are not European – see above).
Jews qua Jews (barring white converts like Ivanka Trump, who make up less than 1 percent of the global Jewish population) are people of color, and the fact that this is even controversial at all sheds light on how deeply entrenched antisemitism has become as once again, the Jew is being made the “other of others”.
5 June 2017, Joel Finkelstein, forward.com, Are Gal Gadot And Other Ashkenazi Jews White? The Answer Is Complicated…And Insidious:
So, is Gal Gadot white? Is she North African/Middle Eastern and Israeli and Jewish and European and white? Is she all six of these things? Or perhaps something else? Who decides whether Jews are white, and what forces guides those decisions?
The ambiguity of Jewish ethnicity serves as a perverse weapon in hands hostile to Jewish identity. It leaves Jews historically vulnerable to anti-Semitism from extreme ideologies on both sides of the political spectrum; Jews are at once the ultimate insiders (white) or ultimate outsiders (other).
The authoritarian right, as recent studies suggest (and as any casual trip to 4Chan will confirm), couples Jewish privilege to themes of parasitism and conspiratorial, outside power. Message boards and twitter feeds everywhere on the right confirm the alarming growth of these racialized ideas at disturbing rates in right-wing social media. The authoritarian right, like the Nazis, attack the Jew as the ultimate outsider to the singular cause of ethnic nationality.
On the extreme left, Jews assume the mantle of ultimate insider. Unlike right wing authoritarian anti-Semitism, left wing anti-Semitism asserts Jewish whiteness excludes Jews from being persecuted. In this psychological fantasy, Jews emerge as powerful white insiders: the elite. Under the thin veneer of social justice, this poisonous narrative forcibly decouples Jewish identities and legitimate suffering from the causes of all other oppressed persons of color. For the far left, a Jew is the ultimate white person. Stalinists decried the insider, “corrupt bourgeois nationalists” to target Jews specifically and forcibly send them to Gulags en masse and redistribute their wealth.
Being white is the new version of the insider and outsider game in identity politics.
On the right, whiteness projections transmute to a mirror opposite. The popular alt-right blogger Radix decries “the rise of a hostile Jewish elite,” a privileged other, he admonishes his readers, threatening the purity of white America itself. In light of this, it is clear that being “white” emerges as a central, modern grammar of “othering” in Jewish existence for both poles of the political extremes.
When we believe, as Noah Berlatsky argues, that “being white is really just a matter of what people see you as,” I would respectfully suggest that history and current events should give Jews pause. For the sake of Jewish life everywhere, let’s start by educating ourselves to understand dangerous nuances of whiteness and how it plays so perniciously into an anti-Semitic reality that we internalize when we believe it. Anti-Semitism, from the left and right, is the largest and most systematic global operation of persecution ever launched against a single people.
7 June 2017, Noah Berlatsky, forward.com, Why Do White People Get Mad When They’re Called White? / Why Do White People Get Mad When We Call ‘Wonder Woman’ White?
When I wrote a piece at the Forward pointing out that Gal Gadot is white, I did not expect there to be a backlash. Gadot is, after all, playing a white character; she was clearly cast because people see her as white.
The argument that she was a person of color was transparently made in bad faith; it was meant to distract from actual POC folks asking for better representation. I thought I was making a fairly uncontroversial point.
White people, though, really don’t like to be told that they’re white. The piece prompted a number of rebuttals, including one by Dani Ishai Behan at the Times of Israel and a piece by Joel Finkelstein at the Forward’s contributor’s network.
Finkelstein and Behan, though, barely mention the issue of casting. Instead, they both spiral off to argue that Jews are oppressed. Jews certainly have been oppressed in some times and places. But white Jews are not currently shut out of roles in Hollywood. If someone says, “I cannot get a job because I am discriminated against,” and you respond by saying, with Behan, “well, my ancestors may at one point have been raped by Cossacks,” you’re not participating in a good faith discussion. You’re trying to cloud the issue so you don’t have to face the particular injustice that’s in front of you at the moment.
The move to talk about something else — anything else — is, ironically, typical of the way in which whiteness defends itself when challenged. Finkelstein and Behan insist they are not white. Okay, then. Why then are they so desperately uninterested in the injustices and indignities meted out to people of color? Finkelstein says it is anti-Semitic to advance a narrative that “decouples Jewish identities and legitimate suffering from the causes of all other oppressed persons of color.” But there is not a word in his piece about the causes of those other people of color, even though the conversation was originally about the fact that people of color don’t get represented as heroes in Hollywood. There is an issue facing people of color on the table. When you talk about standing with them in suffering, are you actually standing with them? Or are you standing on their necks?
The history of Jewish oppression should, ideally, be a way for Jews, white or otherwise, to align themselves with marginalized people. The legacy of anti-Semitic caricature, as just one example, should make Jewish people aware of the importance of media representation. Film and television can lead people to hate others, to ignore others, and even to doubt themselves.
Jews who are white have a choice. We can side with the marginalized, noting that Jewish safety in a white society is uncertain, and what is done to others may one day, again, be done to us. Or we can leverage our particular history of past discrimination as a rhetorical weapon against folks who face discrimination now. To do the latter, no matter one’s color or background, is to embrace whiteness.
7 June 2017, Sarah Tuttle-Singer, timesofisrael.com, I am a light-skinned Jew. I am not ‘White’:
I am a light-skinned Jew.
I am not “White.”
Because Jews are a people — in many colors — from deep ebony all the way to alabaster — who can trace their DNA to a little strip of land no bigger than a fingernail.
And we are not “White.”
And just as science and genetics back this up,** historically in America we’ve been treated as non-White.
It’s true — we aren’t discriminated against the same way as People of Color.
And I am NOT comparing our experience to the systemic and systematic discrimination and outright persecution that many people continue to face in America to this day.
And it’s true, we DO enjoy White Privilege to a large extent… that is, until people find out we are Jewish and then that can change in a quick slither across the face — whether it’s a joke about how rich we must be, or a comment about how we must not be “fully Jewish” because we don’t have a big nose or dark hair or horns or some bullshit, or “is it true you drink Christian blood.”
And I am not looking for sympathy or acceptance or recognition — and to be very clear, I DO NOT identify as a person of color nor would I ever compare my experience to the violence and suffering many continue to suffer to this day.
But I am not White.
I am a light-skinned Jew.
And if you negate my family’s experience as non-whites who were treated as non-whites by Whites, if you deny the discrimination and persecution my people have experienced in America over the years — some systemic, some isolated, but all real and pervasive, then you are erasing our history as Jews in America and there’s a word for that: anti-Semitism.
**If you take the ancestry DNA test and you’re Eastern European Jewish, your results will be “ashkenazi Jewish” – NOT Eastern European.
8 June 2017, Avital Norman Nathman, kveller.com, Are Jews White? Here’s My Answer:
To say Judaism is complex, particularly when you place it in the context of history, is an understatement. As a people, we’ve been “othered” for most of our existence. There’s always been a king or führer or government who has seen to that: to remind us that we’re not like the majority, that we’re supposedly less than, different, and separate. This idea has essentially been imprinted into our DNA over the years.
Because others have defined us by our differences, it’s natural that we too—as a people—seek some definition of who exactly we are. This debate has been happening way before Gal Gadot, and I don’t think there’s an end to it in sight. Is Judaism a religion? An ethnicity? A race? All of the above? I understand why we grapple with these questions continuously because they hit at our identity: Who are we? What are we?
So are Jews white? The question in and of itself is super restrictive and exclusionary. We first need to look at the very real fact that Jews of color exist (despite the fact that Judaism in general has a problem with remembering that). Jews of color are people of color. They’ve got it going on double: Judaism and being a visible person of color.
But people like me? I’m white passing. When somebody looks at me—despite my frizzy curls and prominent nose—I’m read as a white woman. I experience and benefit from as much white privilege as the next white woman. This matters when it comes to me walking down the street, in retail situations, or interacting with the police. Sure, my obviously ethnic name might raise a prejudiced flag if I’m applying to a job or something else, and micro-aggressions are real. But in the majority of my day-to-day life living in America? I am white and experience all the benefits that come with it, regardless of my Judaism.
So… I’m white. But yes, I’ve experienced anti-Semitism (that time in high school when my boss called the cash register the “Jewish Piano” was fun). I’ve had the fear in my heart when Jewish Day schools were being targeted with bomb threats since my son attends one. And I won’t even get into the anti-Semitic dreck I’ve been assaulted with on social media. So yes, I can definitely understand the desire to be as far removed from “white” (aka the folks who perpetrate all of this) as possible.
However, I can experience all of that and still benefit from the infrastructure set up by years of white supremacy. White privilege and anti-Semitism can occur simultaneously. Yes, that’s incredibly frustrating, but that’s also reality. One does not negate the other.
Checking off “white” on a census or acknowledging how I benefit from white privilege doesn’t negate or erase the very real way Jews have been (and still are) treated. It does not cover up my ancestry—how my Bubbe survived the Holocaust along with her family while living in the woods of Poland in underground bunkers and in barns; how my grandfather survived a handful of concentration camps before being liberated from Dachau. How both of them witnessed and experienced unimaginable horrors simply for being Jewish. I’m a first generation American Jew that grew up bilingual. I get that for all intents and purposes I am an other, and that my privileges could be snatched away from me under certain set of circumstances.
My history is real. The history of our people is real. But my place—as a white passing woman—in current society is also real. It is up to me to balance the two,to use that privilege and benefits gained by white supremacy to change the current system where people of color are the ones being hurt by systematic racism and oppressive infrastructure. Because when it really comes down to how I identify, the Jew in me realizes that acknowledging my privilege today enables me to take care of those around me, using what I’ve got.
13 June 2017, Tamar Herman, forward.com, What Gadot As ‘Wonder Woman’ Means To This Jewish Woman / The Gal Gadot Representation Conversation We’ve Been Missing:
Gal Gadot is as white, as I am. That level of whiteness is (sometimes) disputed as Ashkenazi Jews have, at least in recent American history, become the Schrodinger’s cat of racism. Which was why when someone erroneously claimed that Gadot is a person of color, it raised a lot of hackles, particularly because Wonder Woman had no lead characters of color.
Gadot isn’t just another white woman on screen, and it’s dismissive to say so. We wouldn’t be having debates about Ashkenazi heritage in 2017 if that were true. Gadot (and myself) are privileged in this day and age based on the color of our skin. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t have the result of thousand of years of racism raging through our bloodstreams, and minds, filled with suffering and not being allowed to participate in mainstream society.
For the first time that I can recall, I was watching a visibly Jewish woman, speaking with an accent audibly tinged with Hebrew, aka the sound of Judaism for thousands of years, depicting a warrior who fights not just for herself, but for the greater good. It didn’t matter that Gadot was playing a fictional demigoddess built on Greek mythology. Every time I looked at her, every time she spoke, the thought, “Wonder Woman is Jewish!” raced through my mind.
16 June 2017, Mark Tseng-Putterman & Rebecca Pierce, forward.com, Gal Gadot Is Not White, Say Jews Of Color / What Jews Of Color Hear When You Say Gal Gadot Isn’t White:
Many have argued that while Gadot’s Diana is a strong female character, the film flattens womanhood to white womanhood, mostly showing a white woman moving through a white world and reminding woman of color that victories for white women’s representation often don’t make room for meaningful intersectionality.
This critique, largely put forth by black women, has been dismissed wholesale with claims that Gadot, an Israeli Jew of Ashkenazi heritage, is in fact a woman of color.
However, in the Jewish community, the controversy over Mueller’s article reignited a conversation about Jewish racialization and whiteness. As Jewish people of color working for racial justice and liberation in the United States, Israel, and Palestine, watching this conversation tiptoe around questions of white supremacy while centering the perspectives of white Ashkenazi Jews has moved us to intervene with our own perspectives.
The discourse has been suspect, often conflating race, ethnicity, nationality, and genetics. Besides Mueller’s nonsensical claim that Israeli is a race rather than a nationality (which obscures the oppression of racial minorities in Israel), his uncritical use of the term “Caucasian,” a pseudo-scientific term popularized by 18th century race scientists, sets us up for a conversation dependent on the logics of disproved race science rather than contemporary realities of politics, power, and privilege.
Reactionary pieces in The Times of Israel were not much better. Dani Ishai Behan and Sarah Tuttle-Singer alluded to particular Jewish genetics that prove Jews are a people of color, with Tuttle-Singer writing that “we are not white…science and genetics back this up.” The irony that, in an attempt to brand the “antiracist left” as anti-Semitic, Behan and Tuttle-Singer are parroting the same racial pseudoscience that Nazi Germany used to differentiate Jews from “Aryans,” appears to be lost. The myth that race has a genetic or biological basis was roundly refuted in a necessary Haaretz piece in which Ruth Schuster reminded commentators “there is no gene for ‘race’.”
What is the political impulse behind white Jews refusing to be named as white? Clearly, as the derailment of the original conversation about representation of women of color in film shows, it is not out of political identification with people of color. And while Behan bemoans the “troubled” relationship between the “‘antiracist’ left” (scare quotes his) and the Jewish community, branding those who question Jewish complicity with white supremacy as anti-Semitic make clear he is not interested in engaging racial justice movements in good faith. As with the American Jewish institutions that cut ties with the Movement for Black Lives over the latter’s inclusion of Palestine liberation in its policy platform, the derailment of the conversation about Wonder Woman and POC representation by white Jews reminds us that the antiracist left does not have an anti-Semitism problem so much as many in the Jewish community have an anti-racism problem.
Lastly, as Black and Asian American Jews living and organizing in the United States, we are struck by the utter exclusion of the perspectives of Jewish people of color in the conversation. Despite our active engagement and prior writings on the topic, the discourse surrounding Gadot has been primarily white Ashkenazi Jews talking to one another. We question the centering of white Jews as experts on issues of Jews and race as Jewish people of color who necessarily understand the intersections of anti-Semitism and white supremacy based on lived experience. Meanwhile, the vitriolic response we have received when we have shared our voices — including being likened to Holocaust deniers — reflects the realities of racism within the Jewish community. If white Jews are people of color, what does that make us? The combined exclusion and vitriol directed towards our voices and perspectives reminds us that ironically, there is no room for Jewish people of color within a white Jewish racial frame that casts itself as non-white.
Let me start by pointing out that this neurotic talmudic exchange is a perfect example of two jews having three opinions about what’s best for the jews. It’s a semi-coded argument about Whites and Whiteness, conducted by jews on all sides. Though some dance around it more than others, all of them agree there is a fundamental difference between Whites and jews. They all identify themselves entirely positively as jews, and all regard Whites entirely negatively.
All these jews are perfectly fluent in the thought and language of anti-White “anti-racism”. The debate is more of a collegial intra-tribal conversation. It touches on virtually every Frankfurt School/Critical Theory/identity politics/semitically correct term or idea ever weaponized for use against Whites. Key words: othering, oppression, privilege. Key concepts: us versus them, who/whom.
To put it in something akin to their own terms, what these jews are discussing is intersectional jewing. As I’ve previously noted (here and here) “anti-racist” jewing has metastasized into something so baldly anti-White that it is beginning to blowback and interfere with the jewing of the jews who are still dissimulating as White.
What these jews are disagreeing about here is the narrative, how to jewsplain all this duplicitous jewing in some way that doesn’t place any blame on jews. Their problem lies in the apparent conflict between two big lies they have promoted: the idea that jews are White, and the idea that Whites are privileged and “racist”.
Some jews – like Behan, Mueller, and Tuttle-Singer – are relatively frank in describing Whites as enemies. They see no value in encouraging the conflation of jews with Whites. Other jews – like Berlatsky, Nathman, and Herman – favor maintaining the pretense, arguing that in the balance jews benefit from their transracial fraud. They insist they are “white”, or that goyim mistake them as such, but express no shared interests with Whites. On the whole they are more apt to express sympathy and see common interests with other non-Whites.
It is no surprise that the mixlings – Behan and Tseng-Putterman and Pierce – make the plainest distinction between jews and Whites. They’ve chosen their chosen halves. Nor it is any shock that the most visibly jewy jew – Berlatsky – likes the “jews are white” mask. He appreciates that jews can thus white-wash their jewing.
Of all this intersectional jewing the most emblematic moment was the two “anti-racist” people of discolor oyveying lamely about all the other jews being too “white” and taking the genetic/biological basis of race, and specifically jewry, for granted. Indeed, it is through hybrids that jewry’s virulence is most clearly expressed. The jew oppression narrative mutates and squirts about in awkward ways as the parasite manages various hosts, and crosses over to new ones, all necessitated by its very own zionism-for-me-chaos-for-thee jewaforming activity.
Finally, notice that none of the articles linked above mentions that jews run Hollywood and created the comic genre from which Wonder Woman and many of the more recent popular films derive. Herman’s emoting almost spills the beans. Most goyim don’t realize it, but the comic/Hollywood superhero is a jew metaphor, it’s how jews imagine themselves.
11 June 2017, Nathan Abrams, haaretz.com, The secret Jewish origins of Wonder Woman:
Jews sought invisibility and had to earn their “whiteness.” It was only begrudgingly bestowed upon them when they had assimilated to the point of no longer being perceived as a threat by mainstream society.
But all of this misses the point. Superheroes all have a coded Jewish history, whether they were invented by Jews or not. To paraphrase the great American comedian Lenny Bruce: If you’re a superhero, you’re Jewish even if you’re goyish.
Like all the other jews, Abrams propounds a typical jew version of history, portraying his toxic tribe as having no agency and thus no responsibility for anything even as he describes everything as springing from and revolving around them.