The Other McCain has a great post of a symposium over at Commentary magazine regarding Norman Podhoretz's latest book Why Are Jews Liberals.
Just the question alone has to send shivers up and down the spines of the left-wing Jewish elite.
But what I want to ask is can Jewish people be conservative?
Of course they can.
But, they need to give up a lot of preconceived notions about themselves and their world view.
Firstly, being a liberal and or a Democrat because your parents, grandparents, great grandparents, great-great grandparents were needs to stop. The guilt that a Jewish person has over any given issue must stop and stop now. It is OK and a great thing to be smart. To be great businessmen and women. To be involved in your community. To make things better for the next generation, God willing. But to have this overriding guilt about all of these things makes one neurotic and mindless about something called the real world.
Second, rediscover the faith of Judaism, shed the faith of liberalism.
As I have written, my father, God rest his soul, was Jewish. In religious terms, I would not be because my mother was not. Go figure. But, I always have and always will embrace my cultural Jewish identity. Just as I embrace my Scots heritage and indentity on my mother's side. Never over being an American first and foremost.
But most people that identify themselves as Jewish do so culturally. They have replaced a faith in God with a faith of big government and liberalism. Yes, the father of communism, Karl Marx, was the ultimate self-loathing Jew. This is not to say that being Jewish and liberal makes one a communist. It means that for some, it is not just about big government but total control. If this is the only life we have and nothing to look forward to beyond this one, well we do not need to have a religious morality but a "people's" morality.
Being an observant, religious Jewish person means giving up the thought that we are in total control of the world around us. As a Christian, it is often hard to do, but it makes living with the unexplainable much better than the alternative.
Third, stop being afraid of Christian traditionalists. We who consider ourselves traditionalists are the best friends that Jewish people have now. For all the subjection to the Temple of Liberalism, the contempt of the Jewish people by non-Jewish leftists and liberals is astounding. Yet the cultural Jew tries to make the Christian traditionalist the boogyman. That it is the Christian Coalition, the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, et al that is coming after the Jew. Not far behind are the fools in the white hoods-the Ku Klux Klan. Give to the "People For The American Way", or any other liberal Jewish organization and we will protect you.
Yes, by its very nature Christianity is a religion based on converting those to believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. As the Son of God and given power unimaginable to any human, living or dead. And yes, Christianity has not always been kind to non-Christians. I know the religion haters are going to harp on The Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, et al. And I sure do not defend the excesses of the fervor. But, in 2009, the average Jew has less to fear from a well meaning Christian traditionalist than a self-loathing leftist and one who hates having a Jewish background.
Forth, get back to the land.
Overwhelmingly, American Jewish people urban. Period. Most are still ghettoizing themselves in a few large cities on either coast. How many Jewish people do you find in Wyoming? Or anywhere else in the Plains? How about in rural Texas? You get the point.
When the state of Israel came into being in 1948, a agrarian group started Kibbutz. These were communal farming camps. They did everything that the farmer would do for each other. There was no property, per se, and everyone lived in big houses. The one fundamental flaw. No spiritual basis for the Kibbutz movement. It was a socialist model of agriculture that at first seemed to be the way. Again, it failed because the people could not sustain the model without a religious center.
Now, I am not suggesting that American Jews leave the cities and start Kibbutz in Iowa. Just that it would open up a new world to get back to the land. To understand a huge swath of the United States beyond their comfort zone. To be a farmer or a rancher would be something for someone never beyond the cultural walls of New York City or Los Angeles or Miami Beach.
One last thing.
Jewish people need to stop assimilating and marry each other and start having babies. Lots of them.
As Eric Golub at the Tygyrrr Express notes in his book Ideological Bigotry, more than anything else is Jewish people having relations with and marrying non-Jews. And many choose to not have children or have only one. It is a certain way to self-destruction. It is, yes this is harsh, a self-induced Holocaust. It is the slow-death version of Judaism. And that has to stop.
I want to read Mr. Podhoretz's book to get where he is coming from. And I am actually positive about American Jewish people taking a look at conservative ideas, politics and values. It may not happen in my lifetime. But neither will American Blacks be voting Republican by similar 80% margins as they do now. But, it is worth the engagement.
I leave with this quote from the symposium from William Kristol:
But first, read Why Are Jews Liberals? Norman Podhoretz has explained with great insight and elegance how it came about that, in the words of my late uncle Milton Himmelfarb, “Jews earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” The challenge now is for Jews to live like . . . Jews.