In mid-August I wrote a blog about ethnic voters, Jews and Blacks, moving to support Bush. G.W. Bush is a president who has been directly supportive of both groups for strongly moral reasons. At the time I wrote the blog, polls had only shown a movement from 20% Jews for Bush to 40%. Blacks have since shown an identical doubling from 10% for Bush to 20%.
So both groups have the same level of sensitivity to a president who strongly supports them.
My remaining question is, “Why are Jews so slow to see the first powerful figure in history to openly support them?”
I can only speculate on the reasons by looking around at my Jewish friends who blithely ignore the issue of appreciating a president who publicly helps them.
The unappreciative friends of mine, including a few relatives, who don’t recognize what President Bush has done for Israel and Jews, fall into two general categories. Those who don’t know what’s happening in the world and those who identify with Woody Allen. The first group is just the way they are. No need to understand or explain.
As for the second group, you need to know that Woody Allen portrays a schlemiel in his movies. Woody Allen is a schlemiel. You may also need to know that schlemiel is a Yiddish word for a cowardly person who gets kicked around by everyone and seems to take pride in his lowly status. Jews have been largely forced into the role of schlemiel for 2,000 difficult years.
American schlemiel Jews: Think about the way Africans react to African-Americans: “They still act like slaves.” Israelis react the same way to American Jews: “They are cowards, afraid of their shadows.”
I suspect that the schlemiels who make up a large part of American Jewry look at President Bush and wonder: “Who can this person be who is not kicking us around? He must be kicking us around, I just can’t see it.”