Dennis Johnson with one of his academic awards.
Dennis Johnson with one of his academic awards.

Just this morning I wrote a piece for this blog entitled, Gun Safety Reform: 620,000 Americans Died For This?, in which I wondered, not for the first time, what price America has paid by trying to make one nation out of two.  For convenience sake, we today often refer to that divide as being between red and blue states.  In 1860, the divide was being between The Union and The Confederacy.  To try and describe that divide in terms of intellectual and cultural differences would force this ‘supposedly’  tolerant blue state person to use politically incorrect adjectives. And as well all know, being intolerant of intolerance is a form of intolerance (I dare you to say that 3x fast!).

Still smarting from yesterdays Senate vote in which any kind of gun-control reform was defeated, I came across a video in which Dennis Johnson, the Republican Majority Leader in the Oklahoma legislature used the term “Jew-down” in a sentence as if it were a perfectly legitimate – acceptable way of saying, bargaining for a lower price.  After being informed by one of his colleagues that what he said was offensiveness, Johnson, decided to do a bit of damage control by offering the reflection,  “I apologize to THE Jews.”  Mr. Johnson does want you to know BTW, that Jews are ALSO good businessmen.

BTW, Did you hear the one about the Republican  Oklahoma state ‘leader’ who is trying to break into the filed of diversity training?

The historian, Henry Friedlander (Z’L) whom I was fortunate enough to study with while attending Brooklyn College, time and again made the point that anyone who refers to people of Jewish decent as “the Jews,” is anti-Semite.  I’ve yet to hear or read of example this disproves Friedlander’s postulate.

No doubt, had the Republican House Majority Leader of the Oklahoma legislature made a  derogatory, condescending remark about people of color instead of Jews, the hue and cry across this land would be loud and definitive. The East and West coast media would never have allowed a racist remark from an elected official to pass without bludgeoning his career mercilessly with sensational headlines and round the clock reports about his verbal faux pas.

But anti-Semitism is a chronic fact of history that is not all that newsworthy.  And I guess that in red states where there are few people who care about diversity or give a possum-jumbala pot pie if their elected officials make disparaging  comments about anyone or any group that is not white and Protestant,  us  bagel munching, half-dick, hymie-town, Christ killers are just supposed such ignore such slurs without comment.