Saturday, December 18, 2010

Since when is ignorance a Jewish value?

Since always, according to Tzvi Fishman. Apparently bored with making quasi-reasonable arguments promoting aliyah to Israel, Tzvi has decided to go back to his roots. His painful, aneurysm-inducing, roots.
 But the bottom line is that if you care about your children and want them to have a strong Jewish identity, and if you want your grandchildren to remain Jewish, and not some mixed-up, schizophrenic, half breeds, Israel is the one and only place where there’s a future for the Jews.
That's right, folks, Half-breeds. At best, Tzvi is comparing your kids to dogs. At worst, he's invoking some of the 20th century's least savory "thinkers," all in an attempt to goad you into heading for Hebron. This is like the time Levi Brackman wrote a column about how people that claim patrilineal descent is ok are letting Hitler define their Jewishness for them.

Tzvi's great test for determining Jewish identity? A random assortment of historical and pop cultural pictures, shown to some of his kids. His kids can't identify any of them. Not Lincoln's assassination, not Martin Luther King, not the Wright bros at Kitty Hawk, none. Granted, things like the Alamo or the Three Stooges are not necessarily the most relevant or significant thing a kid should know, but it takes some real chutzpah to pat yourself on the back that your kids don't know anything about another country's history.
Like I said, my kids didn't recognize any of the pictures. That shows that their heads aren’t polluted with a foreign gentile identity the way that Jewish kids in America think they’re half Jewish and half American, and that George Washington is their founding father and WDC their nation’s capital. My kids learn Jewish/Israel history in school and not American history, or Canadian history, or Australian history. They are truly Children of Israel, just like it says in the Torah.
Yes, go team Fishman.

Tzvi also has a counter-test he proposes administering to American Jewish kids of elementary age, to see if they can identify any of the famous Jewish scenes or leaders.
I’ll bet a bagel that none of them can identify more than 3 out of 10. Anyway you look at it, that’s a flunking grade. And I’m not talking about the vast majority of American kids from non-affiliated and assimilated families, who are stoned most of the day watching Internet porn, but even your typical Modern Orthodox, Monsey Satmarites, or Boro Park Hasidim – they’re just as Americanized as everyone else.
Of course, he's also cheating by blurring the line between Israeli culture/history, Jewish sages, and Zionist leaders. Sorry, Tzvi, there's no direct line connecting Herzl, Maimonides, and the Baba Sali. Also, funnily enough, I identified all of your pictures. Does this make me Jewishly "Smarter than a (Haredi) 5th grader?"

Tzvi followed this up a few days later with another quiz. I personally think it's less interesting and clever, but feel free to check it out if you've got too many brain cells and want to do some winter cleaning.

Oh, and speaking of winter, Tzvi's most recent post had a great line I just had to reproduce here:
Just so the jolly little elves and white-bearded Santas don’t fool you, it pays to recall the truth about Christianity... The “profane culture” [Rav Kook] writes about which has come to dominate Western civilization is the outgrowth of Christianity, whose doctrines of repression have now burst through Christianity’s outer guise of gentility and brotherhood in a monstrous storm of violence and hate.

That's right, anti-masturbation zealot Tzvi Fishman, owner and writer for Tzvi Fishman, "let's talk about the Secrets of the Brit" twelve more times Tzvi Fishman, is accusing Christianity of having "doctrines of repression!"

*Clap. Clap. Clap.*

Bra-va, sir.

Ending a Hiatus and a Stupid Look Back

Haven't blogged in a while; been busy wrapping up the school term. For my first ice-breaker, I'd like to congratulate Ohio's new governor, John Kasich. Kasich, of course, was a long-time Republican Congressman until 2001, when he decided he'd rather be President than Congressman. This, of course, did not happen, so Kasich went into the sweetest political exile possible for conservatives: becoming a Fox News blowhard. We here at the blog have been longtime, well, not quite fans, of Kasich, but at least admirers that he has enough self-control that he can say the things he does with a straight face.

In that spirit, here are two Kasich blasts from the past:

2006: I hate inconsistency! Only I'm allowed to do that!

2008:  The Heartland is Jewish. Also, I'm totally from the Heartland. Just check out the cool Main Street the Disneyland people built for us near the mega-mall.