I was thwarted from taking my treasured walk in our nearby public gardens on this breathtakingly beautiful Sunday because, well, it was too incredibly beautiful out today. There were so many cars waiting for parking spaces, I decided to make lemonade out of my forced change of plans by picking up ingredients for a delicious stir-fry my daughter concocted recently that we just cannot get enough of. My exercise would have to be on the treadmill after dinner. No problem. That’s why I got the treadmill, for times like this. No more excuses…
Well, after dinner I am pounding away at 3.8 on the treadmill and channel surfing. The channel lands on CSPAN-2’s Book TV which is airing a taped broadcast from 9/10 featuring conservative author Norman Podhoretz speaking before a small group of people at The Harvard Club about his latest book, Why are Jews Liberal?
This caught my attention because I admire and respect Mr. Podhoretz for the patriot and scholar I believe he is. In addition, I myself have wondered before why so many Jews are liberal (just like I wonder why so many of my fellow Catholics are liberal). I’ve had my own theories as to why, and after listening to this scholar expand on them so succinctly in an hour’s time, my perspective on the subject was broadened further.
He spoke of how non-Jewish liberals are often non-supportive of Jewish causes to the point of ofttimes being anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist. Ironically, the groups that liberal Jews do not trust – right wing evangelicals, Catholics and conservatives – are the ones who support Jewish causes, including the Jewish state, in overwhelming numbers.
Based on this premise, Mr. Podhoretz presents a confounding statistic of how, other than the black vote in the 2008 election, of which 95% voted for Barack Obama, the next largest voting block, at 75%! (more than Hispanics, Muslims, Catholics, women or other classically ‘liberal’ groups), were Jews.
The answer to the book’s title is complicated and resides in liberal Jews’ misguided interpretation of their history and religious beliefs. Mr. Podhoretz believes that the Jews’ classic distrust of the ‘right’ wing, rooted in historical perspective, is invalid due to the reality of subsequent world events. To make his point that liberal Jews’ thinking is wrongly stuck in time by refusing to see how groups of people can and do profoundly change, he used the analogy of the “Guns of Singapore”. The battle of Singapore was lost when they refused to listen to reliable intelligence and adjust their war strategy accordingly. Instead, based solely on previous battle successes they decided to aim their guns southward, in the same direction as they had in the last war. Their decision resulted in a disastrous defeat when the Japanese overwhelmed and defeated them from the north.
Mr. Podhoretz explains how many liberal Jews tend to believe that evangelical Christians do not like them because there are passages of the Bible that speak of salvation only through Christ. Mr. Podhoretz would like liberal Jews to also know that, more importantly, in Genesis 9:6 God tells all of us that the Jews are “God’s chosen people…blessed to God above all people…”. Liberal Jews need to open their eyes and see that it is conservatives, Catholic and evangelicals who are the ones who truly support them.
Mr. Podoretz’s said that it is his hope that over the next few years that Jews who voted for Barack Obama will have ‘buyer’s remorse’, and will see him for the ‘false messiah’ that he so apparently is.
Congressman Mike Pence, a true CONSERVATIVE, American patriot, friend of Israel, and a CHRISTIAN asks President Obama (a Progressive Liberal) whose side he is on?