Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | MARCH 11, 2009 7:17 AM

The ‘DI problem’

The DI Editorial Board has a long way to go in regards to, well, just about everything concerning Holocaust references and who’s making them [in their Tuesday editorial, “Clarity should stop the Holocaust references.”]

Let’s put into perspective just what a legal defense is: a narrative constructed for the purpose of defense. It has nothing to do with what is or is not morally astute.

That’s not the crux of the DI’s problem, though. Given the particular wording and the dismissive rhetoric regarding anti-Semitism, “Clarity should stop holocaust references” would have you believe we Jews go around willy-nilly claiming all the non-Jews in the world are one and the same as Hitler.

“Their proposed reason for dismissal? Anti-Semitism on the part of grand-jury members … Please. This case has nothing to do with religion. It’s about the law” is incredibly condescending, prejudiced, and reductive. Who could possibly believe that prejudice and bigotry against a very visible minority is possible? The end result would have one believe that now that the Holocaust is history there are no legitimate accusations of anti-Semitism.

Insofar as “historical sympathy” is concerned, clearly the authors of said article are the ones in need of a history lesson; anti-Semitism is systemic, as are other prejudices.

Furthermore, this litany of assertions leads the reader to believe that Jews are the ones arbitrarily throwing around the term Nazi for anything remotely annoying. Such rhetoric completely bypasses the disconnect between legal defense strategy and other accusations of anti-Jewish sentiment, perpetuating the notion that Jewish people are exceptional and therefore incapable of being victimized by the majority. The article could have made a point in regards to real defense strategy concerns, however, by couching the argument in “the Holocaust card” (incredibly prejudiced rhetoric) the DI Editorial Board completely undermines any credible argument it attempted to make.

Marni Steadham
Iowa City

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