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Thread: Palin Claims "Blood Libel"

  1. #1
    Havakasha is offline

    Palin Claims "Blood Libel"

    Palin accuses journalists Of 'Blood Libel,' Calls Loughner 'Apolitical' (VIDEO)
    Ryan J. Reilly | January 12, 2011, 7:50AM

    Four days after a gunman attempted to assassinate Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ), former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin responded to criticism over a map she posted before the election that featured gun sights over 20 targeted Democratic districts, including Giffords's.

    "Vigorous and spirited public debates during elections are among our most cherished traditions," Palin wrote in an early morning post on her Facebook account on Wednesday. "But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible."

    [TPM SLIDESHOW: Across the Nation, Vigils Held for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords]

    "There are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently apolitical criminal. And they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently," Palin wrote on Facebook. "But when was it less heated? Back in those 'calm days' when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols?"

    Palin pointed out that Giffords read the First Amendment on the floor of the House last week. "But less than a week after Congresswoman Giffords reaffirmed our protected freedoms, another member of Congress announced that he would propose a law that would criminalize speech he found offensive," Palin wrote.

    "It is in the hour when our values are challenged that we must remain resolved to protect those values. Recall how the events of 9-11 challenged our values and we had to fight the tendency to trade our freedoms for perceived security. And so it is today."

  2. #2
    Havakasha is offline
    “Blood Libel”
    January 12, 2011 8:28 A.M.
    By Jonah Goldberg
    I should have said this a few days ago, when my friend Glenn Reynolds introduced the term to this debate. But I think that the use of this particular term in this context isn’t ideal. Historically, the term is almost invariably used to describe anti-Semitic myths about how Jews use blood — usually from children — in their rituals. I agree entirely with Glenn’s, and now Palin’s, larger point. But I’m not sure either of them intended to redefine the phrase, or that they should have.

  3. #3
    Havakasha is offline
    Sorry for repeat posting. Can someone take one of these down. Thanks

  4. #4
    Havakasha is offline
    Sarah Palin: Attacks on me after Giffords shooting are blood libel
    In new video released Wednesday, Palin says 'Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own.'

    Former U.S. vice presidential candidate and governor of Alaska Sarah Palin hit back at critics Wednesday, comparing accusations against her in the wake of the shooting attack on Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords to blood libel, a centuries-old claim that Jews use the blood of Christian children in religious rites.

    "Especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence that they purport to condemn," Palin said in a video statement posted online Wednesday.

    “Acts of monstrous criminality stand on their own, they begin and end with the criminals who commit them -- not collectively with all the citizens of a state, not with those who listen to talk radio, not with maps of swing districts used by both sides of the aisle, not with law-abiding citizens who respectfully exercise their first amendment rights at campaign rallies," she said.

    Giffords, who is Jewish, is in critical condition after she was shot in the head during an attack in Tucson, Arizona last week. Six other people were killed by suspected gunman Jared Lee Loughner, 22.

    In the wake of the attack, Palin has come under criticism for her aggressive political style, including setting up a website called "Take Back the 20," which included a map of the United States with cross hairs on congressional districts of Democratic candidates she had singled out for defeat.

    One of those seats belongs to Giffords, who criticized Palin at the time.

    "The way she has it depicted has the cross hairs of a gun sight over our district," Giffords told MSNBC television last year. "When people do that, they've got to realize there's consequences to that action."

  5. #5
    Havakasha is offline
    Blood Libel does not mean what you think it means.

    by HeidiEight

    Wed Jan 12, 2011 at 06:05:02 AM PST

    If we hadn't seen her act so ridiculously before, I'd say this latest video was inconcievable.

    I don't know who wrote the speech she read off a teleprompter (it's reflected in her glasses) in the video she released this morning; I don't even want to link to it.

    But I'll quote the salient-to-this-diary point:

    But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn.

    Sarah, "blood libel" does not mean what you seem to think it means.

    Update: OMG! Rec list! Thank you so much, everyone! I'm trying to keep up with comments, but am heading out in about 20 minutes and will be back later this afternoon... Again, thanks!

    HeidiEight's diary :: ::
    Blood libel describes a horrible lie: the belief that Jews kill Christian children in order to make ritual use of their blood. The libel is nearly a thousand years old, and has been used by anti-Semites through the centuries to justify pogroms, massacres and the destruction of Jews.

    For Ms Palin to use that phrase in a complaint about the media, in the aftermath of a mass murder where the primary target was a Jewish woman, is, to put it mildly, weird.

    She can't possibly be this ignorant. Can she?


    There's already a backlash regarding her choice of words (whether she wrote them or not, she did speak them so she must hold full responsibility for them).

    Politico's Jennifer Epstein quotes 'Hank Sheinkopf, a New York-based Democratic political consultant and devout Jew':

    "The blood libel is something anti-Semites have historically used in Europe as an excuse to murder Jews – the comparison is stupid. Jews and rational people will find it objectionable. This will forever link her to the events in Tucson. It deepens the hole she’s already dug for herself... It’s absolutely inappropriate."

    But it seems Sarah Palin wasn't the first from the right wing to use the term "blood libel" in connection with the coverage of her brutal map. Yesterday, conservative blog Human Events featured a post entitled "The Giffords Blood Libel Will Fail" but did not use the phrase in the article itself.

    Glenn Reynolds also used the phrase in a WSJ piece earlier this week:

    So as the usual talking heads begin their "have you no decency?" routine aimed at talk radio and Republican politicians, perhaps we should turn the question around. Where is the decency in blood libel?

    Update at 9:40AM EST: And noted fictionalizer Andrew Brietbart used it in a twitterpost yesterday, and as of this moment, the term if trending on Twitter. CBS's Andrew Cohen tweet is the top tweet, Brietbart's is second. And Cohen also linked to

    the hateful, deadly history of the blood libel-- from Encyclopedia Judaica:

    Jonah Goldberg posted this about an hour ago:

    But I think that the use of this particular term in this context isn’t ideal. Historically, the term is almost invariably used to describe anti-Semitic myths about how Jews use blood — usually from children — in their rituals.

    Wow, I actually agree with a Jonah Goldberg sentence. Two, actually. (Personally, I don't agree with his last sentences: I agree entirely with Glenn’s, and now Palin’s, larger point. But I’m not sure either of them intended to redefine the phrase, or that they should have. But he was on a roll there. The comments on his post are fascinating.

    These right wing pundits and politicians have taken a phrase that means something devastatingly specific and twisted it to their own ends, and in this context - where a Jewish woman was targeted and shot through the head, and a child was killed, to have the phrase "blood libel" become another dog-whistle term for the right wing is disgustingly abhorrent.

  6. #6
    Havakasha is offline
    Jewish groups condemn Palin's use of term 'blood libel'
    by Barbara Morrill
    Wed Jan 12, 2011 at 10:43:55 AM PST

    Condemnations by Jewish organization, over Sarah Palin's self-serving use of the term "blood libel" to defend herself after the criticism she has received in the wake of the assassination attempt of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, are mounting:

    Jewish Funds for Justice:
    We are deeply disturbed by Fox News commentator Sarah Palin’s decision to characterize as a “blood libel” the criticism directed at her following the terrorist attack in Tucson. The term “blood libel” is not a synonym for “false accusation.” It refers to a specific falsehood perpetuated by Christians about Jews for centuries, a falsehood that motivated a good deal of anti-Jewish violence and discrimination. Unless someone has been accusing Ms. Palin of killing Christian babies and making matzoh from their blood, her use of the term is totally out-of-line. [...]

    Ms. Palin clearly took some time to reflect before putting out her statement today. Despite that time, her primary conclusion was that she is the victim and Rep. Giffords is the perpetrator. As a powerful rhetorical advocate for personal responsibility, Ms. Palin has failed to live up to her own standards with this statement.

    National Jewish Democratic Council
    Instead of dialing down the rhetoric at this difficult moment, Sarah Palin chose to accuse others trying to sort out the meaning of this tragedy of somehow engaging in a “blood libel” against her and others. This is of course a particularly heinous term for American Jews, given that the repeated fiction of blood libels are directly responsible for the murder of so many Jews across centuries — and given that blood libels are so directly intertwined with deeply ingrained anti-Semitism around the globe, even today.

    J Street:
    The country’s attention is rightfully focused on the memorial service for the victims of Saturday’s shooting. Our prayers continue to be with those who are still fighting to recover and the families of the victims. The last thing the country needs now is for the rhetoric in the wake of this tragedy to return to where it was before.

    Meanwhile, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), the only Republican member of Congress who is Jewish, had this to say:

  7. #7
    SiriuslyLong is offline
    SiriuslyLong's Avatar
    Joined: Jan 2009 Location: Ann Arbor, MI Posts: 3,560
    Quote Originally Posted by Havakasha View Post
    Sorry for repeat posting. Can someone take one of these down. Thanks
    You can. Go to "edit", and there's an option for deleting the post. I think.

    Yes, I just checked.
    Last edited by SiriuslyLong; 01-12-2011 at 02:59 PM.

  8. #8
    Havakasha is offline
    Having some problems doing the erase for some reason, but thanks anyway.

  9. #9
    Atypical is offline

    Poor, Poor Sarah

    William Rivers Pitt, t r u t h o u t | Op-Ed

    So let me get this straight.

    Twenty people were gunned down at a supermarket in Arizona on Saturday. Six were killed, including a nine-year-old girl. Fourteen others were wounded, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was the main target of the attack, and who was shot through the head. She is currently lying in a hospital bed with half of her skull removed because brain swelling from her bullet wound could kill her.

    Twenty people shot.
    Six killed.
    Fourteen wounded.

    And guess what?
    It appears Sarah Palin is the principal victim of the shooting.
    No, really.

    Don't believe me? Watch the video she posted to her Facebook page. There she sits, in front of a fireplace and beside an American flag like some cruel joke on Franklin Delano Roosevelt, wreathing herself in pity because people are coming to the conclusion that politicians like her - the ones who have spent the last two years talking about guns and civil war and reloading and such - should bear some of the blame for what happened in Arizona.
    How on Earth could anyone come to such an irresponsible and reprehensible conclusion?


    In a message posted on her Facebook page Sunday afternoon, Sarah Palin reiterated her call for supporters to "reload" in the battle against health care reform, a term that provoked controversy last week after critics accused her of inciting violence against members of Congress. Presenting her message as an exhortation to college basketball teams competing in March Madness, Palin stood her ground in using firearm imagery against the administration.

    "The crossfire is intense, so penetrate through enemy territory by bombing through the press, and use your strong weapons - your Big Guns - to drive to the hole. Shoot with accuracy; aim high and remember it takes blood, sweat and tears to win," Palin wrote. In the headline of her update, she mockingly predicted that the message would be "subject to new politically correct language police censorship."
    (Emphasis added)

    That was supposed to be about basketball, and as usual, all sorts of mean people jumped up and down on her for once again vomiting gun-violence rhetoric into the political debate. Yup, she was the victim then, and is now the victim once again.

    Poor, poor Sarah.

    Before you start spluttering and staggering in an attempt to comprehend the sheer galactic magnitude of this new round of idiocy - "Who the what the where the when the why the how the what?!" was my initial response - stop a second and remember that this is how people like Sarah Palin operate. This is how they get others to follow them. They make themselves out to be victims, and convince their followers that they, too, are victims.

    Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, Savage, O'Reilly and the rest of the right-wing media machine have turned professional victimhood into a license to print money, and people like Sarah Palin are all too happy to jump on that bandwagon. You're losing your country, your rights, your guns, your family, your religion, the sanctity of your marriage, the supremacy of your heterosexuality, my God, you're losing Christmas, for the love of God! You're losing everything (...psssst...they're talking to White Christians when they say this stuff, by the way, which just cracks me all the way up...), and if you don't "take up arms" to stop it, well, it will just make the Baby Jesus weep bitter, bitter tears.

    Speaking of "taking up arms," here is Palin's explanation for such rhetoric: "When we say 'take up our arms,' we are talking about our vote."
    Of course. How could we have missed such an obvious reference? Silly us.

    Poor, poor Sarah.

    Since we're on the topic, here's another hoot from another professional victim: Sharron Angle, the only living human who can make Sarah Palin seem sensible and coherent by comparison. In her own comments on how awful it is that people who think her "Second Amendment remedies" talk might have something to do with politicians getting shot in the head, Angle said, "The irresponsible assignment of blame to me, Sarah Palin or the Tea Party movement by commentators and elected officials puts all who gather to redress grievances in danger."

    Let that one sink in for a second.

    The twenty people who were shot on Saturday were gathered peacefully with their elected representative to petition for a redress of grievances when they were mowed down like grass. But they are not the victims. Angle, Palin, the Tea Party are the ones in danger here. They are the ones whose rights are in peril. They are the victims.

    Or something.

    Something else happened here, however, speaking of victims. In her puling, self-pitying video rant, Palin accused her critics of committing a "blood libel" against her. From the New York Times:

    The term blood libel is generally used to mean the false accusation that Jews murder Christian children to use their blood in religious rituals, in particular the baking of matzos for passover. That false claim was circulated for centuries to incite anti-Semitism and justify violent pogroms against Jews. Ms. Palin's use of the phrase in her video, which helped make the video rapidly go viral, is attracting criticism, not least because Ms. Giffords, who remains in critical condition in a Tucson hospital, is Jewish.

    So was Gabriel Zimmerman, who died on Saturday.

    The geometry of all this is a little bewildering, so let me try to sum it up. The victims of Saturday's shooting have caused Sarah Palin and her ilk to become the real victims, so Palin decided to further victimize Saturday's victims by framing her own victimhood with the use of perhaps the sickest anti-Semitic slur ever to exist on the skin of this Earth.

    But guess what? It wasn’t even her line. She used it, sure, but lifted it from a Wall Street Journal headline and article by right-wing columnist Glenn Harlan Reynolds, a.k.a. "InstaPundit." So she’s a victim as well as unoriginal.

    Contain your shock.

    Poor, poor Sarah. We weep bitter tears for your travails.

    Not. I will save my tears for the real victims here, for the living and the lost, and the America that people like Sarah Palin have been tearing apart for ambition and profit.

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