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Maureen Lipman

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 Rob Exile Ward 06 Jan 2022

She's becoming a bit of a PITA, isn't she?

https://www.theguardian.com/film/2022/jan/05/maureen-lipman-attacks-casting-of-helen-mirren-as-former-israeli-pm

She also needs someone to check her words of wisdom before she makes them public if she doesn't want to make a fool of herself:

'“I’m sure [Mirren] will be marvellous [in the role of Golda Meir], but it would never be allowed for Ben Kingsley to play Nelson Mandela. You just couldn’t even go there.”'

But Kingsley playing Gandhi was perfectly OK (which it obviously was)? I'm sorry, you'll have to explain. 

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> But Kingsley playing Gandhi was perfectly OK (which it obviously was)? I'm sorry, you'll have to explain. 

That was quite a long time ago now and attitudes have probably evolved a lot.

 Postmanpat 06 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

>

>He also needs someone to check his words of wisdom before she makes them public if he doesn't want to make a fool of himself>

 

 You might want to check Ben Kingsley’s original name and background. Sorry, couldn’t resist 😀

  But Lipman is basically saying actors shouldn’t act, which is weird.

 Rob Exile Ward 06 Jan 2022
In reply to Postmanpat:

I never knew! So what's he doing playing Merlin then? Or the Jewish accountant in Schindler's List?Shouldn't be allowed!

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Give her a break! She's doing a great job as Tyrone's granny in Corrie.

 65 06 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Careful, you'll be accused of anti-semitism.

Lipman, talented and sharp as a razor as she was and possibly still is, has always been a bit hardline.  I wonder what she made of Jewish Warren Mitchell playing an English racist who threw the 'Y' word around with abandon.

I await Peter Tatchell raising objections to Daniel Day-Lewis or Benedict Cucumber-Patch for their performances in My Beautiful Launderette and The Imitation Game respectively.

The legal case against Omid Djalili in The Infidel could get very complicated. A Bahá'i pretending to be a Shia, then a Jew, and eventually both! 

And don't get me started on Mel Gibson! He may be a short irascible alcoholic racist but he's no' one of us.

Post edited at 22:38
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

What is Jewish Maureen Lipoman doing in acting roles as a gentile? Isn't this gentile-facing?

 Jon Stewart 06 Jan 2022
In reply to 65:

> I await Peter Tatchell raising objections to Daniel Day-Lewis or Benedict Cucumber-Patch for their performances in My Beautiful Launderette and The Imitation Game respectively.

Not Tactchell obviously, but there was a story along exactly those lines a year or two back I'm certain...pathetic!

 Tom Valentine 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

You get this sort of stuff all over the film industry : Latino actors claiming that Xavier Bardem shouldn't be allowed to play South American drug lords because he might share the same language as them but was born in Europe. 

Update: now there's a negative reaction against him playing the Cuban Desi Arnaz. 

A good job  American artists  in general  aren't as xenophobic or The Wire would have lost two of its best actors

I wonder if Ms Lipman thinks that only proper Jews should be allowed to portray Fagin?

Post edited at 00:29
 65 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

FFS.

 r0x0r.wolfo 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Chris_Mellor:

> What is Jewish Maureen Lipoman doing in acting roles as a gentile? Isn't this gentile-facing?

You say this as a joke...

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/film/2020/oct/14/gal-gadot-cleopatra-backwards-step-for-hollywood-representation

 Wainers44 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

It's everywhere.  Did you know the staring role in Jaws 2 was taken by a Tiger Shark, not a Great White? Charlatans.

 Ridge 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> You get this sort of stuff all over the film industry : Latino actors claiming that Xavier Bardem shouldn't be allowed to play South American drug lords because he might share the same language as them but was born in Europe. 

Bardem disgusts me. I was horrified to discover that as well as being European, he's also not really a psychopath who kills people with a captive bolt gun. He was just pretending. Surely studios could have employed an authentic hit man to play the role?

In reply to Ridge:

>  Surely studios could have employed an authentic hit man to play the role?

Alec Baldwin? 

 lorentz 07 Jan 2022
In reply to FactorXXX:

Too soon! But I still gave you a like... Edgy! 

 Tom Valentine 07 Jan 2022
In reply to FactorXXX:

Robert Blake has got better credentials.

 Ridge 07 Jan 2022
In reply to FactorXXX:

> Alec Baldwin? 

<Applause>

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> But Kingsley playing Gandhi was perfectly OK (which it obviously was)? I'm sorry, you'll have to explain. 

I'm with Trigger, from Only Fools and Horses, where Gandhi is concerned:

 "He made one great film and then you never saw him again..."

... And he wasn't referring to Kingsley.

 65 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Darren Jackson:

> I'm with Trigger, from Only Fools and Horses, where Gandhi is concerned:

>  "He made one great film and then you never saw him again..."

> ... And he wasn't referring to Kingsley.

Brilliant. For whatever reason it reminds me of a Will Ferrel line.

"They're laughing at us."

"Yeah, well they laughed at Louis Armstrong when he said he was going to the moon."

In reply to Tom Valentine:

> I wonder if Ms Lipman thinks that only proper Jews should be allowed to portray Fagin?

I can't decide whether having a Jewish actor playing Fagin or Shylock is semitism or anti-semitism. 

 fred99 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Dave Garnett:

It's going to be tough on wannabe Shakespearean actors;

Only 1 part for black actors, and Moorish only at that.

Then the requirement for Royalty and titled personages means that Prince Andrew might find he's in great demand again.

Mind you, there aren't that many Danish Royals who act, so some plays might never be done again ...

In reply to fred99:

> Mind you, there aren't that many Danish Royals who act, so some plays might never be done again ...

Just wait until you see the choreography for Swan Lake, with a chorus of real swans.....

In reply to Ron Rees Davies:

> Just wait until you see the choreography for Swan Lake, with a chorus of real swans.....

If they can find at least one black one.

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Uh oh, I played a shepherd in a nativity play at school, mind you it was 50 years ago and things were different. 

 Wainers44 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Dave Garnett:

> If they can find at least one black one.

Got loads of them here in Dawlish. I will send a couple. Would be easier if you could spray up the white ones. Is that not OK any more?

 wercat 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Wainers44:

yes, lots of "Black Swan" events in Dawlish!  Ignorant expression isn't it?

 Tom Valentine 07 Jan 2022
In reply to fred99:

Just seen a poster with Denzel playing Macbeth......

 squarepeg 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

What about black tie events, are they allowed? 

In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Phah... what's all this twaddle about acting?

Back to the subject -- Maureen Lipman.... so, what grade is her bouldering?? Where does she stand on E0, and does she offwidth or not?

 Maggot 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Darren Jackson:

I was traumatised for weeks when someone finally told me that Ted wasn't real.

 Clarence 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Maggot:

And Stuart Little wasn't played by a mouse!

In reply to Tom Valentine:

> Just seen a poster with Denzel playing Macbeth......

Denzel from Pemburthy?

 fred99 07 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> Just seen a poster with Denzel playing Macbeth......

Down with that sort of thing ...

 Tom Valentine 08 Jan 2022
In reply to fred99:

Yes, some might say that Denzel should "play the white man" by not actually playing the white man....

Post edited at 01:59
 deepsoup 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> Yes, some might say that Denzel should "play the white man" by not actually playing the white man....

Crikey.

 Tom Valentine 08 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

Yes it's a bit of a shocker,  like the American "that's mighty white of you".

I hadn't realised that its usage was more or less confined to Yorkshire and Humberside, though, when it was actually in use.

 deepsoup 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

I heard it often growing up in the late '70s through the early '80s.  (So I don't think it can have been confined to Yorkshire as Wikipedia says.)

I was more surprised to hear that it still is in use tbh, even in jest.

Post edited at 12:44
 Tom Valentine 08 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

Yes, I suppose it was a bit risky, hence the inverted commas. I'm surprised that "great white hope" isn't regarded as offensive but  I see that the jury is still out on "whiter than white". 

Post edited at 14:11
 65 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

>  "play the white man" 

Murray Walker used it while commentating during the Schumacher era. I was in my mid 30s and was watching the GP with some young students. I'd heard the phrase so often growing up, never at home though, that I barely noticed it. The young students were appalled, which I took as a good sign.

As said in Don't Look Up, "Different generation."

 Jon Stewart 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

David Baddiel was interviewed about this on R4 yesterday (World at 1?) from his 'Jews Don't Coun't' perspective. I thought he was wrong - other minorities get exactly the same treatment in equivalent cases as dippy Lippy is getting here.

 Rob Exile Ward 08 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

I don't like to think how embedded was the expression 'n [unacceptable word] in the woodpile' was, well into the 70s. 

 squarepeg 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I heard that used around year 2000. Nobody reacted. 

 nathan79 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I recall a lecturer using it during a class when I was at uni around 2000. I'm not white, and possibly all the rest of the class was. 

One of those "Did he just really just say that?" moments. Fairly sure I looked around and I don't think anyone else batted an eyelid.

In reply to Jon Stewart:

> David Baddiel was interviewed about this on R4 yesterday (World at 1?) from his 'Jews Don't Coun't' perspective. I thought he was wrong - other minorities get exactly the same treatment in equivalent cases as dippy Lippy is getting here.

Actually Maureen Lipman was a lot more nuanced and reasonable in the discussion I heard.

 Jon Stewart 08 Jan 2022
In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Actually Maureen Lipman was a lot more nuanced and reasonable in the discussion I heard.

Fair point actually, she was quite nuanced - just wrong.

She made a point I quite identified with, which was that Jewish viewers can clock where others can't when a Jewish character just isn't spot on. I see this with gay characters played by straight actors (I'm not sufficiently Jewish to be able to tell with Jews!), there can be something they haven't captured and it slightly grates. To which I think "so what!".  Not all acting is brilliant. Some straight actors play gay roles brilliantly. The whole x's must be played by x's is a daft idea to promote, it's a restriction on creative freedom and builds up stiffness and resentment around what should be making art.

In reply to Jon Stewart: - I'm not disagreeing here, just attaching to your post...

If all roles were played accurately, where would we get our laughs - climbing/climbers in Cliffhanger comes immediately to mind.

My other thought is that the clue's in the name - ACTING - good actors will get their representation of a role correct (*) regardless of whether they're the same as the role they're acting or not.

(*) - doesn't have to be 100% correct, just correct enough for whatever the context is. We shouldn't lose sight of the fact that acting/films/plays etc is entertainment so it doesn't have to be totally correct as long as it's not unintentionally offensive (some art is intentionally offensive but that's a different discussion).

Post edited at 00:34
 David Alcock 09 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

It was a common saying amongst my family when us kids were being fractious. In their defence they left SA in disgust when apartheid started, but the phrase remained. I haven't passed it on. 

 Rob Exile Ward 09 Jan 2022
In reply to Michael Hood:

True anecdote: the bloke who made a walking film with Martin Clunes said 'In real life you're not at all like Doc Martin, are you.' To which Clunes replied 'No I'm not - I'm acting. It's what I do.' The bloke then said 'What about your character in Men Behaving Badly then?' 'Ah', said Clunes, 'that was different...'

 Tom Valentine 10 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

I agree, Jon .

A little  bit of blackface never really harmed anybody.

But I'm a bit less happy about southerners trying to act like proper Yorkshire folk.

 GrahamD 10 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> But I'm a bit less happy about southerners trying to act like proper Yorkshire folk.

Or just about anyone trying to do brummie, or even worse blackcountry. 

In reply to Jon Stewart:

> I see this with gay characters played by straight actors (I'm not sufficiently Jewish to be able to tell with Jews!), there can be something they haven't captured and it slightly grates. To which I think "so what!".  Not all acting is brilliant. Some straight actors play gay roles brilliantly. 

Just on a philosophical/sociological question: do you think there is some type of universal and perhaps even timeless "gayness"? I've never actually got round to watching the Imitation Game, but Cumberbatch (who is married to a woman and has kids so probably identifies as straight) plays Alan Turing (famously or perhaps because of his persecution infamously gay). I don't know if you have seen that film and love it or hate it, think Cumberbatch is great or rubbish - but do you think you can tell that someone playing a gay man in the 1940s isn't quite doing it right? Or would have being gay 80 years ago been different to how it is now?

Likewise, if you are watching a film that has contemporary gay characters in it, but is set in another country - particularly one you really don't know, lets say Iran or Egypt (I've not even visited either of them but they have film industries!) - do you think you can identify something particular about gay men in those countries?

I've been watching recently The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, it's quite good, but read back in the autumn some stuff about Sarah Silverman criticising Hollywood (not individual actors) for consistently putting non-Jewish actors in Jewish roles - she mentions Brosnahan who plays Mrs Maisel. Silverman called it "Jewface" and said “It’s defined as when a non-Jew portrays a Jew with the Jewishness front and center, often with makeup or changing of features, big fake nose, all the New York-y or Yiddish-y inflection." It did make me think that does an American Jew in 2021 know that an actor playing a role set in the 1950s is over-egging say the Yiddish-y inflection? They may well be but as most of us weren't around in the 50s in New York, it's hard to say. 

 Tom Valentine 10 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

>  but as most of us weren't around in the 50s in New York, it's hard to say. 

Or C19th Transylvania, in the case of Alfie Bass...

 Jon Stewart 10 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

> Just on a philosophical/sociological question: do you think there is some type of universal and perhaps even timeless "gayness"?

I can't say how universal or timeless it might be, that I can tell you that all the gay people I've every known or met seem to me to be at least a bit gay. And some, of course, are very gay. I suspect that yes, there is something both universal and timeless about said gayness, because I think the reason for it is differences/commonalities in brain structure.

For something so impossible to pin down, I doubt there's any way of testing this hypothesis. And just because something exists, doesn't mean it's always easy to see.

> I've never actually got round to watching the Imitation Game, but Cumberbatch (who is married to a woman and has kids so probably identifies as straight) plays Alan Turing (famously or perhaps because of his persecution infamously gay). I don't know if you have seen that film and love it or hate it, think Cumberbatch is great or rubbish - but do you think you can tell that someone playing a gay man in the 1940s isn't quite doing it right? Or would have being gay 80 years ago been different to how it is now?

I quite liked the film, but didn't think Cumberbatch nailed the subtle gayness that one might imagine Turing might have exhibited in his mannerisms, diction, intonation etc. But this is just totally subjective - as you point out, how on earth would I know? All I can appeal to is some vague feeling that had the performance really nailed it, I'd know it when I saw it. I appreciate this is total speculation and has no basis in any kind of evidence.

The performance I was actually thinking of was Macauley Culkin in Party Monster. I think some people thought it was good, but I just found it totally flat and unwatchable because he completely failed to capture the excessive gayness of the character, but not for lack of trying! 

> Likewise, if you are watching a film that has contemporary gay characters in it, but is set in another country - particularly one you really don't know, lets say Iran or Egypt (I've not even visited either of them but they have film industries!) - do you think you can identify something particular about gay men in those countries?

Being crap at languages, that gives me a really poor starting point. I think the idea is feasible in principle, but is just a level of gaydar too far for most average practitioners to achieve.

> I've been watching recently The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, it's quite good, but read back in the autumn some stuff about Sarah Silverman criticising Hollywood (not individual actors) for consistently putting non-Jewish actors in Jewish roles - she mentions Brosnahan who plays Mrs Maisel. Silverman called it "Jewface"

Yes, everyone in a minority can spot a bad portrayal based on third-hand stereotypes rather than first (second?) hand experience of people a mile off.

Interesting question!

Post edited at 20:46
 65 10 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

I'm interested in what you thought of Sean Penn's portrayal of Harvey Milk in the film, Milk, assuming you've seen it (and if not I very highly recommend it).

I have a good friend and ex-colleague who is in manner, body language and inclination very gay (or in his words, gayer than two cocks kissing), yet I'd worked and socialised with him for over a decade without it remotely crossing my mind. The nearest I ever came was occasionally wondering why he never had a girlfriend and concluding that he was too cerebral for such trifles. Now that I know, I seems so obvious. Possibly my hetero gaydar is poorly or non functioning.

 Jon Stewart 10 Jan 2022
In reply to 65:

> I'm interested in what you thought of Sean Penn's portrayal of Harvey Milk in the film, Milk, assuming you've seen it (and if not I very highly recommend it).

That was the other performance I had in mind...except that I haven't see it. From clips, it looks to me like an example where the actor might have really nailed it? I'll watch it and see what I think. Sean Penn is after all, really really good at acting.

I might be being unfair on Cucumberpatch. Maybe he did really nail it, and I wasn't switched on enough to notice...

> I have a good friend and ex-colleague who is in manner, body language and inclination very gay (or in his words, gayer than two cocks kissing), yet I'd worked and socialised with him for over a decade without it remotely crossing my mind

You do of course get those straight men who just happen to be really gay. Or do you? It's far from an exact science.

Post edited at 22:32
In reply to Jon Stewart:

It will probably wind you up hugely if we deny any biological determinism but being "gay" or indeed "straight" seems to be to a massive extent a social construction. I know that men having sex with men has been normal in some societies at some times, and punishable by death in others. I remember touching on this a bit when I did some anthropology courses at uni a long time back.

I had a mate when I lived in Finland, a young guy whose boyfriend was Egyptian and my Finnish friend had been there quite a lot. My friend said it was very hard to get your head around because he said it seemed like for a high proportion of men there, their first sexual experiences were with other young men because of the rigid separation of boys and girls in a conservative society (regardless of whether that Muslim or Copt, so Christian). He said there is (or at least was) a "gay scene" in Cairo but it was pretty underground, and "being gay" was something that people would leave the country to be. It's odd because until at least the 70s, many gay Finnish men moved to Sweden for pretty much the same reason. There is still a linger Finnish stereotype of Swedish men being effeminate gays, because why else would all the Finnish gay men want to go there? It always seemed funny when the rest of the world had this view of Sweden as being a heterosexual nirvana!

In reply to TobyA:

> but do you think you can tell that someone playing a gay man in the 1940s isn't quite doing it right? 

A gay man playing a straight man in the 1940s, at that. Or in Cumberbatch's case, a straight man playing a gay man playing a straight man...

I think the 'like playing like' argument is nicely parodied in a scene in 'Upstart Crow', where Kate says women should be allowed to act, and Bottom gives a list of all the characters that would be hard to cast: "a real dragon for St George and the Dragon"... Then there's the middle-aged man playing 14-yr old Juliet...

Then we have gay actors playing straight roles: Big Bang Theory has two, at least.

It all gets rather silly.

 Jon Stewart 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

> It will probably wind you up hugely if we deny any biological determinism but being "gay" or indeed "straight" seems to be to a massive extent a social construction. I know that men having sex with men has been normal in some societies at some times, and punishable by death in others. I remember touching on this a bit when I did some anthropology courses at uni a long time back.

To completely derail this thread, I might reply to this properly later. I think we might actually agree-ish, but approach a similar conclusion from different angles... But I would say that there is now quite a lot of biological data out there that the social constructivist has got to account for if they want to be taken seriously.

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

But the point she is making is that Ben Kingsley playing Ghandi would never happen now. That is why she makes the analogy of a white actor playing Mandela. 

You can disagree with this as 'PC gone mad' etc, but why would it be different for Helen Mirren playing Golda Meir, whose Jewishness is as integral to the role as Mandela's blackness is to his?

 Rob Exile Ward 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

To derail still further, Pinker (in The Blank Slate, I think) uses the perceived sexual behaviour of gay communities as an illustration of how the different biological sexes (i.e. M & F - life was much simpler back in the old days!) differed in sexual behaviour. I.e. lesbians tended to be far less promiscuous than gay men despite their gayness giving them 'equal opportunity.' I.e. we blokes are jusr ravenous for sex ('most men would f*ck a tree,' as Jo Brandt succinctly put it) while women are more into the relationship and commitment side of things.

Just putting that out there ...

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

You've muddled it up a bit.  Ben Kingsley (born Krishna Pandit Bhanji) could still be cast as Ghandi (but he couldn't play Mandela obvs, which is what she actually said). 

If you're looking for a classic example of 'blackface' casting that couldn't be done now (and arguably shouldn't have been done then), the obvious choice would be Laurence Olivier's 'Othello'.

I'm not dismissing the concept of "jewface" here entirely, representation is important, but the obvious difference with Mirren playing Meir is that religion is not race. She doesn't need anything more in the way of makeup etc., for the role than she would to play Margaret Thatcher.

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> (i.e. M & F - life was much simpler back in the old days!)

Simpler for the majority who fit neatly into one box or the other perhaps, at the cost of life being rather more difficult for some of those who didn't.

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

I didn't realise Kingsley was Indian, fair enough. But you're wrong about thinking of Jews as just being of different religion: it can be both a religious (Judaism) and ethnic identity eg David Baddiel is an atheist Jew (and atheist Jews are still subject to antisemitism).

So it is directly comparable with non-black person playing Nelson Mandela, albeit Mirren's skin tone would be a closer match, but skin tone isn't the principle at stake here.

In reply to deepsoup:

> You've muddled it up a bit.  Ben Kingsley (born Krishna Pandit Bhanji) could still be cast as Ghandi 

But maybe shouldn't. I don't know if Mark Kermode came up with it himself, or maybe one of the listeners - but it's been a very long running gag on the Kermode and Mayo film review programme about Kingsley, that "when he is good he is very very good, but when he is bad he is Gandhi." I have to say it must be 30 years since I actually watched it, so I don't know if he was that bad or not but it is a funny line. 

> I'm not dismissing the concept of "jewface" here entirely, representation is important, but the obvious difference with Mirren playing Meir is that religion is not race.

This is actually really complex. IIRC, "Jewish" is treated as a race under British racial equality laws. The one place not to go if you think of Jewish people as "a race" is Israel, as you get Israeli Jews who are white, black and brown and look very different from each other. But the Ashkenazi Jews of Central and Eastern Europe who via emigration make up most of the Jewish populations of the US, Canada, South Africa, Australia and so on, do have certain common physical traits, which is where we get our stereotypical view of what Jewish people look like - particularly via US movies and TV.

 Tom Valentine 11 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

The issue of only casting authentic racial types might be surmountable in film but it would be all but impossible to tackle in live drama on stage. 

Is there a different principle involved?

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

She's likes the 'Ologies (at Stanage).

youtube.com/watch?v=NK5-2fPyCjA&t=29

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

> I have to say it must be 30 years since I actually watched it, so I don't know if he was that bad or not but it is a funny line.

Ha. Me too.  (On both counts.)

> This is actually really complex.

Yes.  (Almost too complex to be neatly crystallised in a short pithy statement made by one famous actor talking about another.)

As far as 'certain common physical traits' is concerned, I think if Mirren was going to wear a prosthetic conk to play Meir then that would be no better than Sir Larry's 'Othello' make up.  But..  nuance, innit.

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

So you wouldn't have any objection to non-black actors playing Nelson Mandela, for example? Because many people would object & they probably wouldn't be described as a "PITA" or "dippy" for it...

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> Is there a different principle involved?

Dunno.  Perhaps it's appropriate that the same principle should weigh a little more heavily on one theatrical production that has 100x the budget, audience and profile of another.  (And perhaps on one that will be immortalised forever compared to something more ephemeral.) 

"With great power comes great responsibility" kind of a deal.

In reply to captain paranoia:

> Then we have gay actors playing straight roles

And, to flip the 'men playing female roles' in Elizabethan theatre, there are plenty of examples of women playing Hamlet in the modern theatre. 

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

It's as valid a concept as "black" is as a race. (People tend to prefer the idea of ethnicity nowadays). Ultimately all Jews (apart from religious converts) can trace origins back to the Middle East.

In reply to troybison:

> Ultimately all Jews (apart from religious converts) can trace origins back to the Middle East.

Ultimately, all humans can trace their origins to the Rift Valley in Africa...

 lithos 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> I can't say how universal or timeless it might be, that I can tell you that all the gay people I've every known or met seem to me to be at least a bit gay. And some, of course, are very gay. I suspect that yes, there is something both universal and timeless about said gayness, because I think the reason for it is differences/commonalities in brain structure.

> For something so impossible to pin down, I doubt there's any way of testing this hypothesis.

seems quite easy (but expensive) to me to test this experimentally but hard to get past some ethics boards in a psych dept.  Even testing a gaydar would be quite easy to do but similar, indeed  probably/may have already been done. 

>That was the other performance I had in mind...except that I haven't see it. From clips, it looks to >me like an example where the actor might have really nailed it? I'll watch it and see what I think. >Sean Penn is after all, really really good at acting.

Sean Penn had access to  a lot of film of HM to base his mannerism etc on.  Not so with Turing

In reply to troybison:

> You can disagree with this as 'PC gone mad' etc, but why would it be different for Helen Mirren playing Golda Meir, whose Jewishness is as integral to the role as Mandela's blackness is to his?

I can't see the problem, if she's a good enough actress then she'll be able to convey whatever "Jewish" characteristics are necessary to make a convincing performance of Golda Meir.

If she's not a good enough actress then she'll fail in that performance and her performance will be justly criticised, but that doesn't mean that she should be denied the opportunity to try (and succeed or fail).

Bit more difficult with Mandela, there's no doubt that make up departments could make a white person appear convincingly black, and any differences in facial structure could be dealt with by protheses. But there's a historical issue with "blacking up". If "blacking up" had always been done to do good sympathetic portrayals of black people then it wouldn't have been a problem, however it was used in a way that demeaned, trivialised and often made black people objects of fun. This history means that any non-black portrayal of black people has a huge hurdle to get over before having any possibility of success - basically any attempt has no chance.

We have to live with the consequences of our historical baggage, and this "restriction" of who can play black roles is one of those consequences.

My apologies if "black people" is not currently accepted phraseology - no offence is meant; I would have to plead ignorance and ask to be informed so that I can get it right in future.

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

Slow clap

In reply to troybison:

Thank you.

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Michael Hood:

Jews have also been portrayed unsympathetically by white people in the past & demonised in film & on stage. There's no fundamental principle why the rule should only protect black people & not other minorities or ethnicities.

 Tom Valentine 11 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

>  There's no fundamental principle why the rule should only protect black people & not other minorities or ethnicities.

If your principle covers  other ethnicities then that includes " white".  Unless we are considered "beyond the pale".

In reply to troybison:

> It's as valid a concept as "black" is as a race.

But everyone with half functioning brain know that "Black" isn't a single ethnicity or race or national group, when Black people are ethnic minorities in white majority countries their family heritage might tend to come from certain places - in the UK I think its about 50/50 now for British Black people between the Caribbean and Africa, predominantly anglophone West Africa, but of course some from East and Southern Africa. But in France it is almost all Africa, and generally Francophone West Africa. After all, as Sivanandan said "we are here because you went there".  I don't know, but I suspect by now there must be at least a few British citizens whose families are Australian Aboriginal - they'd be seen as Black, but they won't have much in common with a Nigerian!

>Ultimately all Jews (apart from religious converts) can trace origins back to the Middle East.

Good luck on sorting out the percentage DNA of "convert"! The the main Diaspora of Jewish people goes back 2000 years, but there were Jewish people moving around the ancient world even before then. If you go to Israel and see Jewish Israelis from say Polish or Russian or German heritage next to those of Ethiopian, Yemini or Iraqi heritage, it does make it hard to really get your head around "Jewish" being ethnic or racial.  There are plenty of ethnic tension in Israel between Jews, leaving aside Palestinian or other Arab Muslims and Christians who are Israelis.

In reply to Jon Stewart:

My Mum knew Alan Turing. She was a librarian at Manchester University. All she would say was that he was a quiet person...

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

But, in general, "black" is a useful term in talking about ethnicity, just as "Jewish" is. Black people usually self-identify as such, just as Jewish people do.

Israel accepted Jews from Iraq, Egypt etc when they were ethnically cleansed after Israel's formation, so Jews certainly have the concept of "Jewish" as an ethnicity (or a group of related ethnicities).

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Tom Valentine:

Yes, of course.

 Rob Exile Ward 11 Jan 2022
In reply to neilh:

'All she would say was that [Turing] was a quiet person...'

That doesn't give an actor a lot to work with, frankly...

In reply to troybison:

> But, in general, "black" is a useful term in talking about ethnicity, just as "Jewish" is. Black people usually self-identify as such, just as Jewish people do.

Yes, to a certain degree within countries where they are a minority and to some degree face prejudice. But that's not to say that within UK Black society, and even more so - among African Americans, there aren't tensions over colourism, and because of the national diversity of different people's heritage. Black African or Caribbean immigrants to the US talk about at times facing prejudice from African Americans, due to the sense they don't truly understand what it means to be Black in America. Obama faced that to certain degree - both due to having a white mother and a Kenyan father.

> Israel accepted Jews from Iraq, Egypt etc when they were ethnically cleansed after Israel's formation,

I think many Israelis might bristle at the use of "accepted" - Israel was formed to be a homeland for all Jews from anywhere. But, yes, many Jews from the Mid East were forced out after '48 by their own governments and might have stayed otherwise. This happened again after the 6 day war. 

> so Jews certainly have the concept of "Jewish" as an ethnicity (or a group of related ethnicities).

A group ethnicities related by a shared religion! Long time ago now but I got to go Sderot, and go to the police station where they kept the racks and racks of homemade missile bodies that Hamas and IJ were regularly firing into Sderot - they weren't as well made then so tended not to go much further. I think it was the mayor who said to us "if this was happening to the white Jews in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem they would have crushed them by now, but because we are brown and poor no one cares." Sderot for some reason does have a mainly Sepharic and Mizrahi originating population, so maybe he had a point.

 Jon Stewart 11 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

> So you wouldn't have any objection to non-black actors playing Nelson Mandela, for example?

I don't object to this, it's hilarious!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rngrl9jM04&ab_channel=01biltho

But more seriously, that would be excruciating because of the way the history of blackface has played out. The reason blackface is unacceptable isn't that there's something inherently immoral about blacking up, it's the historical connotations which make it offensive.

These arguments usually involve demands for consistency between things that aren't the same. Racism against black people, antisemitism and homophobia are all equally vile, but they're not the same thing; they work in different ways and have different histories.

Post edited at 19:19
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Spot on. What he ∆ said.

In reply to troybison:

> Jews have also been portrayed unsympathetically by white people in the past & demonised in film & on stage. There's no fundamental principle why the rule should only protect black people & not other minorities or ethnicities.

But you wouldn't know that I was Jewish if I chose to hide it (although of course nobody should feel they have to); black people can't do that. Historically that has been a fundamental difference between black people's experience of racism and jews' experience of antisemitism for some time now (let's say 100 years but the amount is arguable either way).

 mondite 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

> That doesn't give an actor a lot to work with, frankly...

It does let the casting director to include the search term "mime" though.

 Jon Stewart 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

> It will probably wind you up hugely if we deny any biological determinism but being "gay" or indeed "straight" seems to be to a massive extent a social construction. I know that men having sex with men has been normal in some societies at some times, and punishable by death in others. I remember touching on this a bit when I did some anthropology courses at uni a long time back.

This really depends on what you mean by "being gay", "massive extent" and "social construction". 

We have to contend with the 'problem of other minds', that we can never know what's going on in anyone else's head, if indeed anything at all; but we can infer a lot by what they say and do. And also a bit from their brain structure.

I think everyone would have to agree that sexual attraction at its base level is not socially constructed (I think people do actually make these kind of idiotic claims from time to time). It's obviously a biological function that evolved for the most bloody obvious reasons, rather like hunger and thirst and pain. Given that, there's a question of how flexible it is, what might influence it, etc. The idea that it's a social accident that heterosexuality is considered the norm is absurd. The question is how different societies might deal with deviance from this standard, whether they could conceivably encourage homosexuality, and if indeed sexual orientation is at all flexible to social influence.

I used to take the view that because I'm completely inflexible and all the social pressure in the world, and conscious wanting, did not succeed in budging my orientation one notch (unless you include interactions with girls that went no further than snogging, which I did not find arousing) then that must be the same for everyone. I now think I am a bit further out on this bell-curve and more people are a bit more more bi/flexible than me. But I am 100% sure that we're not all bisexual and just swayed by social factors - that is entirely preposterous to me. It doesn't match up either to introspection nor empiricism.

My guess is that while the majority of people are just straight, there's quite a lot of flexibility out there, so depending on social factors there's an infinite number of ways that some natural prevalence of homosexuality/bisexuality can be expressed in people's behaviour. It's a luxury of modern liberal society that people like me can just "be gay", i.e. be honest about their consistent same-sex attraction, and get on with life. In many societies, it would be more rational to marry someone of the opposite sex and fantasise really skilfully while shagging them. In such societies it's going to look like there is a low prevalence of homosexuality. In a society where there's a positive expectation that lads bum each other or whatever, then the slightest hint of any homosexual/bisexual/flexible/fruity tendency will be expressed openly and with glee. It'll look like there's a lot more gays in that society.

It gets even more complicated if you consider the "independent but not orthogonal" trait of gender identity. I'm thinking of societies where gayness seems to be expressed more along the lines of transsexualism ("ladyboys"). Again, it's because of our liberal values that we get to see how sexual orientation and gender identity are different traits - we ask people what they feel and we let them do as their nature guides them, to a greater degree than in traditional societies.

The general principle here is that the more liberal a society, the more the underlying biology can be seen in behaviour. The more coercive, the more distorted the picture.

 squarepeg 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

What? 

 Rob Exile Ward 11 Jan 2022
In reply to squarepeg:

What post does your 'what' refer?

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

A white actor could play Mandela without blacking up. A black actor played Ann Boleyn without make-up.

I think a lot of people would object though & I wouldn't disparage them for it, so I don't see why Maureen Lipman should be attacked for her point either, even if you disagree. 

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

Most, but not all, Jews share the religion of Judaism. But atheist Jews, eg David Baddiel, are Jewish because it's also an ethnic identity, a concept that you seem sceptical about.

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

> I don't see why Maureen Lipman should be attacked for her point either, even if you disagree. 

Who on this thread is attacking Maureen Lipman, as opposed to disagreeing with her?

Post edited at 22:50
 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

eg the thread begins by accusing her of "becoming a bit of a PITA".

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

Oh right, yeah fair enough, at a bit of a stretch I suppose you could characterise that line in the OP as an attack. 

My mistake,  I thought you were replying to Jon almost a hundred posts in.

 Jon Stewart 11 Jan 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

I called her "dippy Lippy" just because it rhymes, I thought her point was annoying, and i find her a bit annoying. Never enjoyed her work.

I don't actually think she's dippy, she seems pretty intelligent. 

In reply to troybison:

I've got a number of mates who are in that long and noble Jewish tradition of being atheists, the idea of being culturally Jewish, but not believing anything is really quite normal. I've actually taken to describing myself as a "cultural Methodist" - I'm an atheist and haven't been inside a chapel in a number of decades, but I'm a member of a trade union, the Labour Party, I don't gamble and without meaning to, I think I look down on those who do. I do drink but, but like a good [or bad?] Methodist I have a deep seated feeling that it's not something to be proud of etc. etc. This idea I have directly pinched from my atheist Jewish friends and from getting to know the idea if cultural Jewishness through my studies. 

So there are fortunately lots of of other words available beside "religion" and "ethnicity" - "culture" most obviously.

As I said at the start, UK law holds that both Jews and Sikh are distinct racial groups for purpose of the race relations act and subsequent equalities legislation - that puts them in a legally different position to Muslims and Hindus for example. But UK law is a funny old thing - that distinction seems a bit random. When you go to Israel and see white, black and brown Jewish people there, calling them one ethnicity because of some shared cultural traits or religious beliefs, seems a bit silly. But, what is "ethnicity" anyway - like someone said earlier, ultimately we all come from East Africa.

 deepsoup 11 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Ah, I missed that.  Well in that case you're a terrible person.

 elsewhere 12 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

It's an amusing reflection of reality that the first two definitions I found online for the word 'lapsed' both include the example of 'lapsed Catholic'.

My experience is that average lapsed Catholic is culturally very Catholic as the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Post edited at 00:02
In reply to elsewhere:

> as the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

I thought the fundamental Catholic problem was plucking the apple from the tree...

Post edited at 00:51
 Andy Gamisou 12 Jan 2022
In reply to lithos:

> seems quite easy (but expensive) to me to test this experimentally but hard to get past some ethics boards in a psych dept.  Even testing a gaydar would be quite easy to do but similar, indeed  probably/may have already been done. 

There's been definitely some "work" in applying machine learning algorithms to facebook profiles to predict sexual orientation and even to detecting gay men via analysing facial features from photos (I did a quick trawl around the literature as part of the ethics unit of a machine learning module some months ago).  All a bit scary I thought.  

 squarepeg 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

The previous waffle, sorry should have quoted it. 

 troybison 12 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

>UK law is a funny old thing

The UK's legal position is not unusual in this, nor does it "seem a bit random". The idea of Jews as a distinct, identifiable ethnicity is shared by most Jews of whatever skin tone, who share a common ancestry, which DNA evidence confirms. 

It's naive to think that ethnicity doesn't exist & that white-looking Jews won't face discrimination because they have light skin. Jews like Rachel Riley, Maureen Lipman, Ruth Smeeth, Tracey Ann Oberman, etc (like any Jew who has the temerity to speak out about antisemitism, but women in particular) face torrents of antisemitic abuse online (NB I don't mean on this thread, but eg Facebook/Twitter).

 Wilderbeest 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Unsure if this excellent article by David Baddiel has been linked to yet.

https://www.theguardian.com/film/2022/jan/12/helen-mirren-golda-meir-maureen-lipman-david-baddiel-row-jews-bojack-horseman

His opinion is that she shouldn’t be abused for making a pretty clear and obvious point.

He points out about  the casting in “it’s a sin” …. “authenticity is leading us to joyous places.”

Post edited at 10:28
 deepsoup 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Wilderbeest:

Interesting read, ta.  I can't argue with that, especially the last paragraph:
"It is, as I say, complex. At the end of the day, I don’t know the answer. But I think that I – and Maureen Lipman and any other Jew – should not be abused for asking the question."

Nuance innit.

Interesting that he mentions Michael Fassbender (only to say that he's not going to play Ghandi).  Well obviously he's not going to play Ghandi, but is it ok that he and Ian McKellen played Erik Lensherr (aka Magneto) in the X-Men films?

 Cobra_Head 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Wilderbeest:

> Unsure if this excellent article by David Baddiel has been linked to yet.

I don't think it is excellent.

Obviously, she shouldn't be receiving abuse, but there's no reason why people shouldn't disagree with her, or him.

She was pretty vociferous about Corbyn and gave him no chance of reply, when all the allegations were being levied at him and the Labour party, so you might say she's getting a little of what she gave out.

As for actors, that's what they do, act!

Miren is arguable one of the best, so why would you choose someone else, who's hard to work with, or not as good in the roe, as someone Jewish might be?

 Rob Exile Ward 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Cobra_Head:

I wasn't aware that Lipman was 'asking a question'; she was trying to lay down the law.

The idea that no one who is not black, gay, Jewish-or other than ME - can possibly empathise, resonate or understand at least some of what that 'other' experiences denies the reality, the raison d'etre of culture.

And it is a tad ironic that Lipman is probably best known for playing a caricature of a Jewish mum that a non Jewish actor would have, perhaps rightly, been criticised for. What rabbit hole does that lead us down?

 Tom Valentine 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Cobra_Head:

Baddiel makes the same assumption as the other complainers: that only  film acting counts.

Nowhere in any of this has the issue of stage acting arisen.

Deep Soup says that it is a matter of scale and that larger scale productions and audiences  have more responsibility to do the right thing, whereas I don't consider morality to be on a sliding scale based on the number of people involved in the activity.

If it's wrong for Mirren to play Meir on film then it would be equally wrong for her to play the role on stage.

Post edited at 13:17
In reply to Tom Valentine:

But Baddiel isn't saying it's wrong. He's basically saying it's a fait-accompli in the industry for black, gay, trans, etc. in which case it should also apply to Jewish roles, and that this differentiation is wrong.

I agree with your "scale" point, there may be some points of morality that are size dependent (I've no idea what) but I can't see this being one of them. 

 Jim Fraser 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Next time I see somebody playing MacBeth who isn't an Invernessian ginger, I'm going to totally lose my composure. 

 elsewhere 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Jim Fraser:

> Next time I see somebody playing MacBeth who isn't an Invernessian ginger, I'm going to totally lose my composure. 

I won't mention Denzel's latest project then.

 Tom Valentine 12 Jan 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

Too late.....

In reply to troybison:

Of course, in the same way Sikhs face prejudice for their visible differences. But lots of British Muslims also face horrible prejudice and abuse - even white converts - and most British Muslims will be black or brown - so visibly different. But they don't get protection from Islamophobia as an ethnic group under the race relations act. But the act does give it to Jews and Sikhs as ethnic groups. In that sense UK law is odd or uneven.

You mention DNA, I wonder how closely linked by DNA Jews of, say, Lithuanian descent are to Jews of Ethiopian descent? I suspect not very closely! When the Ethiopian Jews wanted to make Aliyah (emigration to Israel as Jews) at first the Israeli government said they weren't really Jewish so had no right.

 Jon Stewart 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Wilderbeest:

> Unsure if this excellent article by David Baddiel has been linked to yet.

Thanks for the link. I've got a lot of time for DB, but I think he's wrong here.

Davies was not, thankfully, mightily abused on social media for saying it – which is what happened last week to Maureen Lipman, after she suggested, on being asked about the casting of Helen Mirren in a biopic of Israel’s former prime minister Golda Meir, that Jewish parts should perhaps be played by Jewish actors.

It's not the same. Davies made the positive decision to only cast gay actors in It's A Sin. He did not piss and moan about a specific straight actor getting a part he'd rather was played by gay instead.

Even in animation, voice actors now need to correspond to the ethnicity or sexuality or gender preference or able-bodied status of their avatars. The risks of outrage if this stricture isn’t followed are too great.

Sorry I don't buy it. How many examples even are there of trans characters in animations either being voiced or not voiced by trans actors?

Having a non-Jew do Nebbish Being – if you follow the same logic that would apply if this was a black, gay, trans, disabled or any other minority character, playing-up stereotypical aspects of that minority – is disrespectful, or at least not true, to Jews.

This does apply equally to all minortities. Anyone who does a bit of shit, stereotypcial gay acting is going to get crucified by the gays on twitter, just as anyone who does bad jewface/Nebbish Being is going to get crucified by the Jews on twitter. It's about the acting: if it's bad, let's slag it off; and if it's good, let's celebrate it. One way to improve the chances of getting really good acting is to go for "authenticity" and make a decision to cast actors close to the roles as in It's A Sin. That's one approach. Or you could cast really good actors who can play the part well, while navigating issues of representation etc.

At the end of the day I just don't agree with DB's central point that there's something unfair about the way Jews are treated as a minority compared to other minorities. All minorities suffer unique forms of discrimination depending on factors like how visible they are, what marks them out as a minority - why they've suffered discrimination - and crucially, the history.

Antisemitism is a very specific form of discrimination that reflects a unique history. Homophobia is a different very specific from of discrimination. The important thing is to tackle them where they exist, not to draw up rules that say "if you do this for the gays, you've got to do exactly the same thing for the Jews". DB is trying to take a nuanced view, but I find his take simplistic and whiny.

 Cobra_Head 12 Jan 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

What do you do when you want to make a film about Crippen?

"It's a pity we couldn't get a real mass murderer to play Dr. Crippen"

 Wilderbeest 13 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

It may be coming across as “moaning” but using the example of Helen Mirren has certainly brought the issue to peoples attention.

I was genuinely surprised that the majority of the main actors in Friday Night Dinner were not Jewish and that Tamsin Grieg has said she shouldn’t have played her role.
 

 Tom Valentine 13 Jan 2022
In reply to Cobra_Head:

No, and if the murderer is gay you don't need to have a gay actor to portray him. David Tennant was outstanding as Dennis Nilsen in last year's TV drama. To be fair, though, his physical and facial likeness to Nilsen was so remarkable that there really was no other choice.

 fred99 13 Jan 2022
In reply to Wilderbeest:

> I was genuinely surprised that the majority of the main actors in Friday Night Dinner were not Jewish and that Tamsin Grieg has said she shouldn’t have played her role.

If Tamsin Grieg was telling the truth I ask one simple question;

Why didn't she turn it down ?

 troybison 13 Jan 2022
In reply to TobyA:

You're simply saying that racism & prejudice can be both based on ethnic or religious reasons. "Muslim" isn't an ethnicity, it denotes a follower of Islam . However, Muslims are rightly protected under equalities law and laws against hate crime, as are Sikhs and islamophobia (in the sense of anti-Muslim hatred) is rightly regarded as a form of racism.

Antisemitism can be motivated by both religious and ethnic prejudices. As Baddiel says "many instinctively see Jewishness as a religion, rather than an ethnicity, and therefore antisemitism as religious intolerance rather than racism".

 troybison 13 Jan 2022
In reply to fred99:

Have you never seen something you did in your past as wrong that you didn't see as wrong at the time?

 Jon Stewart 13 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

> As Baddiel says "many instinctively see Jewishness as a religion, rather than an ethnicity, and therefore antisemitism as religious intolerance rather than racism".

I can't speak for others but I see antisemitism as racism. No one understands what Jews believe in, and most of the religious ones I know are pretty vague about it. 

Baddiel has a good story about admitting his atheism to a rabbi...

 troybison 13 Jan 2022
In reply to Cobra_Head:

The allegations levied at the Labour Party that were vindicated by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission Report, you mean?

The one that said that the Labour Party, under Corbyn, had "breached the Equality Act 2010 by committing unlawful harassment" against Jewish people?

The report that was fully accepted by the current leader of the Labour Party?

 troybison 13 Jan 2022
In reply to Jon Stewart:

eg Toby seems adamant that there's no such thing as Jewish ethnicity, despite it being a very mainstream concept and recognised in law.

I don't think Judaism is harder to understand than, say, Islam and is much more familiar (via the Old Testament) than religions like Sikhism or Hinduism.

In reply to troybison:

> eg Toby seems adamant that there's no such thing as Jewish ethnicity, despite it being a very mainstream concept and recognised in law.

Toby has pointed out that there is a similar level of ethnic diversity within Judaism as there is within Islam. It seems a pretty fair and accurate observation to me.

 Jon Stewart 13 Jan 2022
In reply to troybison:

> I don't think Judaism is harder to understand than, say, Islam and is much more familiar (via the Old Testament) than religions like Sikhism or Hinduism.

What's baffling to me is how anyone this side of the middle ages could base a belief system on the Old Testament...

But exactly the same could be said of Sikhism, Hinduism and the rest. 

 troybison 13:02 Thu
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Yet it has shaped the three Abrahamic faiths' moral principles for thousands of years. Luckily, it isn't interpreted literally, by the vast majority of religious people. 

 troybison 13:03 Thu
In reply to captain paranoia:

He's pointed it out, yes. But he's wrong. 

 Jon Stewart 13:12 Thu
In reply to troybison:

> Yet it has shaped the three Abrahamic faiths' moral principles for thousands of years.

You say that as if it's a good thing. I'll stick to secular humanism based in science and reason thank you. That way I won't find myself accidentally subjugating women, hating gays, invading my neighbours, that kind of thing.

Post edited at 13:19
In reply to troybison:

I didn't say there was as much ethnic diversity in Judaism as there is in Islam FWIW, I very much doubt that's true when you compare 20 odd million Jews to over a billion Muslims.

I don't think we have good definitions for race or ethnicity, but I started off by pointing out Jews are seen as a race by British law. That is what it is, but I said when you look at Jews in Israel they look diverse in terms of ethnicity.  

In reply to troybison:

> But he's wrong. 

That's a very convincing argument, well done.

So the Ethiopian Jews are the same ethnicity as east European Jews?

I suppose it depends which definition of 'ethnicity' you are using.

In reply to TobyA:

> I didn't say there was as much ethnic diversity in Judaism as there is in Islam 

Apologies if i misrepresented your point.

 troybison 14:54 Thu
In reply to captain paranoia:

Toby's claim is that there really isn't any such thing as ethnicity, or at least as far as Jews are concerned. That claim is counter to all serious academic discussion (and law) on these issues that I've seen, so the onus should be on the claimer to prove their point. Toby's claim would imply that Baddiel isn't even Jewish, bc he isn't religious. Try explaining that to the racists who send him antisemitic abuse.

There is DNA evidence to show that Mizrahim, Ashkenazim, Sephardim share common ancestry and these are by far the largest groups in Israel. Obviously converts would be an exception. The Ethiopian Jews may not be as closely related, but they are recognised as Jewish. It isn't that DNA is the key factor, but it really disproves the fatuous point that someone made that there is no ethnicity because all humans ultimately came from the same ancestors millions of years ago.

Post edited at 14:57
 deepsoup 14:59 Thu
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> I can't speak for others but I see antisemitism as racism.

I agree, very much like islamophobia.

The elephant in the room with antisemitism as opposed to other forms of racism is the ongoing effort by various individuals and organisations (including the Israeli government itself) to counter human rights protest by trying to 'weaponise' accusations of antisemitism against protestors.  Protests including even the mildest expressions of solidarity with people who are effectively living under a regime of apartheid.

Similar has been attempted with islamophobia too, of course, by those seeking to counter protests against human rights abuses in Iran or Saudi for example but with very much less success.

Of course that doesn't imply that antisemitism is not a very real and serious problem (just as being paranoid does not necessarily mean they're not really out to get you), but it does muddy the waters considerably in a world in which nuance seems to be in very short supply.

Christ, speaking of expressions of solidarity for those living under apartheid - can you imagine the outcry if a protest song like "I've Never Met A Nice South African" was released about Israel now?

 troybison 16:04 Thu
In reply to Jon Stewart:

>You say that as if it's a good thing

That's your interpretation, I didn't say it with any particular judgement in mind.

You seem very down on Judaism, Christianity & Islam. It seems a very one-sided take. There's no evidence that destroying religious belief will lead to the ending of misogyny, homophobia, war and "that kind of thing".

 Cobra_Head 16:51 Thu
In reply to Tom Valentine:

> To be fair, though, his physical and facial likeness to Nilsen was so remarkable that there really was no other choice.

Have you seen pictures of Golda and compared them to Mirren?

Interestingly, Mirren's roots are Russian, while Meir are Ukranian (Russian Empire - at the time, soon to be again by the looks of things) , maybe this link will be enough for Lipman and Baddiel!

 troybison 16:51 Thu
In reply to deepsoup:

The accusation is often made that Jews are "weaponising" antisemitism, when they're really just calling it out. There is a whole hashtag #ItWasAScam, largely promoted by people now considered too racist to be members of the Labour Party, who argue that all the cases of AS were exaggerated, or weren't actually AS. Let's not forget that Alan Bull, a *Labour* candidate, posted literal Holocaust denial on Facebook (amongst other AS posts) and was *supported* by his local CLP even after it was exposed. The 2 decent CLP members in the CLP who whistleblew were hounded out of the party and branded "far right".

https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2018/03/we-tried-call-out-anti-semitism-our-local-labour-party-we-felt-ignored

To be clear, it isn't AS to demonstrate or show solidarity with Palestinians, but an "elephant in the room", to coin a phrase, is that at pro-Palestinian rallies in the UK, you'll see openly racist banners and AS chants such as "Khaybar, Khaybar Ya Yahud". The far-left have made common cause with extreme antisemites in far too many cases.

 Cobra_Head 16:56 Thu
In reply to troybison:

> The allegations levied at the Labour Party that were vindicated by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission Report, you mean?

In some instances yes, but at the time the Labour party was supposedly "full" of anti-Semites, surprisingly they all seemed to disappear after the Tories won the election. Doesn't that make you uneasy, it should.

> The one that said that the Labour Party, under Corbyn, had "breached the Equality Act 2010 by committing unlawful harassment" against Jewish people?

Where were the prostitutions, this is a crime, so why no prosecutions, does that question not bother you?

> The report that was fully accepted by the current leader of the Labour Party?

ha ha of course it was. FFS!!

From daily news, on the hours every hour, it's all just disappeared, give me a break!!

 Cobra_Head 17:02 Thu
In reply to troybison:

> ..... It isn't that DNA is the key factor, but it really disproves the fatuous point that someone made that there is no ethnicity because all humans ultimately came from the same ancestors millions of years ago.

How would this sit with Pastafarianism? Would it still be racism to abuse on the their flock?

 troybison 17:07 Thu
In reply to Cobra_Head:

It obviously wouldn't because the reasons Jews fled Russia and the Ukraine were because Russians and Ukranians knew they were ethnically Jewish & launched pogroms against them.

 deepsoup 17:12 Thu
 Cobra_Head 17:16 Thu
In reply to troybison:

> It obviously wouldn't because the reasons Jews fled Russia and the Ukraine were because Russians and Ukranians knew they were ethnically Jewish & launched pogroms against them.

What's that got to do with them not having the same historical roots, the only part missing is the Jewish bit. Depending on how Meir was brought up, the similarities could be much much closer than simply having a Jewish actor play Meir.

 troybison 17:22 Thu
In reply to Cobra_Head:

Who exactly said that the Labour Party was "full of antisemites"?

>surprisingly they all seemed to disappear after the Tories won the election

And no, there is still a problem within the Party's far-left fringe suppport base  as anyone with a strong stomach can see if they read the pro-Corbyn Facebook forums, which include everything from conspiracies about Starmer's wife being in the pay of Israel to speculation about Zionists taking over the BBC and the inevitable David Icke-ian Rothschild conspiracies.

> Where were the prostitutions [sic - prosecutions], this is a crime

No, it isn't a crime to be racist unless you commit an actual crime motivated by racism, in which case it becomes a hate crime. There are numerous cases of Labour members & elected officials being disciplined for antisemitism though. High profile ones like Ken Livingstone too. 

> ha ha of course it was. FFS!!

Care to elaborate on why you think so badly of Keir Starmer for taking action against antisemitism? 

 Cobra_Head 17:24 Thu
In reply to deepsoup:

> 'Calling it out' like Danny Danon was when he attacked Emma Watson?https://www.thejc.com/lets-talk/all/emma-watsons-post-was-not-antisemitic-56uc5CLyFdIYeS73miifnY

Anybody supporting Palestinian rights, gets  accused of AS at some point.

There's the usual, : -

Palestine is a made up country and never existed.

There's no such thing as Palestinians.

Then is usually veers off into, insults and supporting Hamas, wanting all Jews dead, and Anti-Semitism.

It makes no difference if the person supporting them is Jewish too.

I've not seen Baddiel mention Watson's support by Jewish actor Miriam Margolyes.

 Cobra_Head 17:30 Thu
In reply to troybison:

>  High profile ones like Ken Livingstone too. 

You really think Red Ken is anti-Semitic?

> Care to elaborate on why you think so badly of Keir Starmer for taking action against antisemitism? 

Because it had little to do with Starmer, he kicked a few people out who needed kicking out, but no where near the number we were being told was in the Labour party. What really happened is no one cared any more once Corbyn was gone. so there's probably the same amount of AS in the Labour party as before, as there is in society, sadly.

 troybison 17:50 Thu
In reply to deepsoup:

No, in that case I agree that Watson's post wasn't antisemitic. You can find cases with any sort of racism where an accusation isn't justified.

I mean eg ordinary Jews who consistently called out antisemitism, often in the face of massive abuse & pile-ons from the delightful twitter Corbynites.

https://twitter.com/supergutman/status/1479739651514585088

Post edited at 17:54
 troybison 17:59 Thu
In reply to Cobra_Head:

> You really think Red Ken is anti-Semitic?

You really disagree with the statutory anti-racism body, the EHRC, which found that he was?

You really disagree with the Labour Party's own disciplinary process which would have expelled him for it, had he not resigned to spare himself & Corbyn the embarrassment?

 troybison 18:17 Thu
In reply to Cobra_Head:

The fact that one ethnic group literally launched pogroms against another might indicate that they had some important differences and that the "Jewish bit" might be quite significant, eh?

Post edited at 18:17
 Jon Stewart 18:25 Thu
In reply to troybison:

> It seems a very one-sided take. There's no evidence that destroying religious belief will lead to the ending of misogyny, homophobia, war and "that kind of thing".

I rather think there is. Have you read Enlightenment Now by Stephen Pinker? 

In reply to troybison:

> Toby's claim is that there really isn't any such thing as ethnicity,

I definitely haven't claimed that. In my very first post I pointed out among Ashkenazi Jews there are common physical traits that make them identifiable as Jewish! I have a colleague in Derbyshire who is Jewish and from Connecticut - before I even heard her accent I thought "she's got to be New York Jewish!"  

> or at least as far as Jews are concerned.

And I haven't argued that either - I'm not sure how anyone can't have ethnicity - it's just that it's a really complicated idea. 

> Toby's claim would imply that Baddiel isn't even Jewish, bc he isn't religious.

Again, not what I said and patently stupid. Weren't you here when we were talking about the very well established idea of being culturally Jewish? Just like most of us white British are culturally Christian even if we are (like Jon BTW, as you expressed surprise at him being "down" on the Abrahamic faiths! ) hardcore atheists. There are plenty of black Jews in America now, some of them might well be atheists, but they are still Jews - regardless of their ethnicity or DNA. 

> There is DNA evidence to show that Mizrahim, Ashkenazim, Sephardim share common ancestry and these are by far the largest groups in Israel.

Of course most will have common heritage because Judaism began in the Middle East and spread! But if you want to say 'brown' Iraqi Jews are the same ethnicity as 'white' Lithuanian Jews, I don't think the word ethnicity has much meaning. I came across this when looking up something else, but it's a nice article written by a Rabbi: "The Jewish world is more ethnically and racially diverse than many people realize." https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/sephardic-ashkenazic-mizrahi-jews-jewish-ethnic-diversity/

In reply to TobyA:

Definitely not universally accepted by Jews as a Rabbi if her name's Rachel 😁, but maybe we better not go down that rabbit hole.

 troybison 12:08 Fri
In reply to deepsoup:

>can you imagine the outcry if a protest song like "I've Never Met A Nice South African" was released about Israel now?

Or the outcry of a song like "Ive never met a nice Turk" or "I've never met a nice Pakistani"?

I think they'd rightly be condemned as racist, yes.

 Jon Stewart 12:34 Fri
In reply to deepsoup:

> I agree, very much like islamophobia.

> The elephant in the room with antisemitism as opposed to other forms of racism is the ongoing effort by various individuals and organisations (including the Israeli government itself) to counter human rights protest by trying to 'weaponise' accusations of antisemitism against protestors.  Protests including even the mildest expressions of solidarity with people who are effectively living under a regime of apartheid.

Extremely muddy waters in the Labour Party where both the antisemitism and the weaponisation of antisemitism by the pro-Isreal lobby were real.

In reply to Michael Hood:

haha! Yes that did cross my mind.   But as you say, perhaps a rabbit hole to go down another time.

 elsewhere 13:00 Fri

Applying clarity and logic to race may be a bit dumb. The Nuremberg laws, Jim Crow laws and Apartheid laws are recognised as fundamentally evil and dumb, the latter because logically defining race makes so little sense when you end up trying to compare skin colour or something with some scale (did they need colour charts?).

I don't think race, religion, ethnicity, culture and nationality are separable with much clarity because in most cases they all come from the same place - parentage.

 deepsoup 19:13 Fri
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> Extremely muddy waters in the Labour Party where both the antisemitism and the weaponisation of antisemitism by the pro-Isreal lobby were real.

Quite so.  And perhaps most of all in that particular case, the weaponisation of antisemitism by the right wing press looking for a stick to beat Corbyn (and Labour more generally) with.

 Jon Stewart 19:40 Fri
In reply to deepsoup:

It annoyed me beyond all belief when it became apparent that alongside the trumped up charges of antisemitism were indeed a load of disgusting racists. Heart sinking. 

 troybison 22:32 Fri
In reply to Jon Stewart:

If you think the charges are "trumped up" then, in the words of Keir Starmer:

"And if – after all the pain, all the grief, and all the evidence in this report, there are still those who think there’s no problem with antisemitism in the Labour Party, that it’s all exaggerated, or a factional attack, then, frankly, you are part of the problem too. And you should be nowhere near the Labour Party either."

https://labour.org.uk/press/keir-starmers-statement-in-response-to-ehrcs-report-into-anti-semitism/

 Jon Stewart 22:44 Fri
In reply to troybison:

Did you read the whole sentence? 

 troybison 10:24 Sat
In reply to TobyA:

So David Baddiel's ethnicity would be Ashkenazi-Jewish, which would have more in  common with Mizrahi and Sephardi than eg a native Lithuanian (Indo-European people of Baltic ethnic group). Ashkenazi, Mizrahi, Sephardi can be viewed as sub-groups of a Jewish ethnicity. We've already dealt with the fact that there are a minority of black Jews since "Jewish" is an ethnoreligious signifier. 

A white-looking Ashkenazi Jew from Lithuania (there are very few left because of the Holocaust, where your ethnicity literally determined whether you lived or died) could be culturally Lithuanian, but it would not make him/her ethnically Lithuanian. Your example of being "culturally Christian" is similarly not an ethnicity.

 troybison 10:46 Sat
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Yes. Do you agree with Keir Starmer or not?

 elsewhere 10:47 Sat
In reply to troybison:

Does that mean ethnicity is so heavily genetic that in your example the white-looking Ashkenazi Jew can never be ethnically Lithuanian despite Lithuanian roots going back generations and longer than some other white-looking Lithuanians have been there?

What makes somebody ethnically Lithuanian that excludes your example of the white-looking Ashkenazi Jew?

Supposing somebody had white-looking Ashkenazi Jew roots without knowing. Could they be ethnically Lithuanian (or by choice if they knew their roots)?

I think imposing clarity, rules and logic on the complexity of identity is not healthy, it looks exclusionary.

Post edited at 10:48
 Jon Stewart 11:12 Sat
In reply to troybison:

> Yes. Do you agree with Keir Starmer or not?

Yes. 

Let's read it accurately, shall we?

"And if – after all the pain, all the grief, and all the evidence in this report, there are still those who think there’s no problem with antisemitism in the Labour Party, that it’s all exaggerated, or a factional attack, then, frankly, you are part of the problem too. And you should be nowhere near the Labour Party either."

I think Starmer is a shrewd operator, he chooses his words wisely.

 deepsoup 12:20 Sat
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Quite so.  I think the Labour party's problem with antisemitism has been exaggerated, and has been 'weaponised' as part of a factional attack, but is also real (and nauseating) and have no problem agreeing with that statement of Starmer's.

Also nauseating was the spectacle of people in the run up to the last couple of general elections being convinced to vote Tory - the party of the "hostile environment", Theresa May's "go home" vans, Windrush and Grenfell - on the grounds that the Labour party is institutionally racist.

 Cobra_Head 16:00 Sat
In reply to troybison:

> > You really think Red Ken is anti-Semitic?

> You really disagree with the statutory anti-racism body, the EHRC, which found that he was?

Red Ken was daft, and he made a mistake, what he said though had SOME truth to is, and there were Jews who spoke with Hitler, so most of what he said was rooted in facts, they're not very nice one's but facts are facts.

Ken, like Corbyn, have been life long anti-racists, and while it's not impossible, I find it pretty hard to think they have singled out Jews as an exception. They I'm sure you'll agree are against the Israeli Government's policies, but the Israeli Government does not equate to Jews, and making this comparison is considered AS in some people eyes.

The weaponising of AS against the Labour party did it's job, and now no one cares again, hence the media silence. It's lasting effects carry on though.

 Cobra_Head 16:14 Sat
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> It annoyed me beyond all belief when it became apparent that alongside the trumped up charges of antisemitism were indeed a load of disgusting racists. Heart sinking. 


That was the problem and it could have been dealt with better, but people became defensive, while others piled on more pressure and saw AS everywhere. It did no one any good "real" AS was swept away by some as people simply moaning.

It would be ludicrous to believe AS, or any other form of racism, doesn't exist in any political party and it should be rooted out, but our politicians are ordinary people, and reflect society as a whole, sadly we need to change society, to improve everyone's life.

Having to be very precise with you language doesn't help, people make mistakes, while others can be deliberately vague. Jews does not equal Israel, Israel does not equal Jews, Israel does not equal the Israeli government, etc..

In reply to Cobra_Head:

I think both Ken and Corbyn think of themselves as not racist and I've never seen anything that shows them being intentionally discriminatory in a negative way about people that would be seen as a racist action.

But I also think that left wing politicians have a tendency to have a sort of political arrogance where they believe that they are 100% right about their political views and that any other view is wrong.

This IMO leads to them being blindsided sometimes resulting in them doing or saying things that will be taken as racist by some (including me sometimes).

In summary, I don't actually think they're racist but they sometimes do racism.

 troybison 23:00 Sat
In reply to Jon Stewart:

>It annoyed me beyond all belief when it became apparent that alongside the trumped up charges of antisemitism were indeed a load of disgusting racists

Can you cite cases that were brought against Labour members that were "trumped up", as you claimed?

Keir Starmer's words are very, very clear, hence the withholding of the whip from Jeremy Corbyn:

"And – perhaps most telling of all: 'a clear breakdown of trust between the Labour Party, many of its members and the Jewish community'. I found this report hard to read. And it is a day of shame for the Labour Party.

We have failed Jewish people, our members."

Post edited at 23:12
 troybison 23:25 Sat
In reply to Cobra_Head:

Livingstone was racist, not daft. Most racist conspiracy theories have SOME truth. 

There's nothing antisemites such as Ken like more than taunting Jews with accusations that they collaborated with Nazis, or are Nazis themselves.

German Jews had no choice but to negotiate emigration from Nazi Germany with the Nazis if they wanted to survive. To imply, as Ken did, that Hitler supported Zionism is racist nonsense. Hitler thought that Jews could be exterminated in the Middle East, before the "Final Solution" was put in place.

Ken is a nasty little racist, hence his jibes to a Jewish reporter about being "like a concentration camp guard".

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2005/feb/12/pressandpublishing.londonpolitics

 troybison 23:30 Sat
In reply to troybison:

"And to the members of Labour Party staff who spoke out, I want to say this: I know how hard these last few years have been for you. How painful today will be and how hard you have had to fight to have your voices heard.

So let me be clear, I hear you. And I can promise you this: I will act.

Never again will Labour let you down. Never again will we fail to tackle antisemitism and never again will we lose your trust.

The Labour Party I lead accepts this report in full and without qualification. 

We will implement all the recommendations."

 troybison 00:36 Sun
In reply to deepsoup:

The Labour Party was found to be institutionally racist though.

And a huge majority of British Jews thought its leader was himself an antisemite. 

 aln 01:03 Sun
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

Aye, best to let Jewish actors only play Jewish people. 

 Cobra_Head 10:32 Mon
In reply to Michael Hood:

> In summary, I don't actually think they're racist but they sometimes do racism.

I'd agree with this, but I'm pretty sure it's unintentional, I also think one man's racism is other man's protest. Mention Palestine and you're always going to upset someone, it doesn't have to be racist for people to start shouting AS.

Israeli and AS is a difficult subject because there's a thin line, people get confused, like I said earlier Israel does not equal Jews, etc. not everyone is so careful with their language, and so it can be seen / made to look like AS. Ken and Corbyn, should know better, but everyone can make mistakes.

I notice Baddiel and Lipman haven't found time to comment on Emma Watson's a Miriam Margolyes support of Palestine.

 Cobra_Head 10:37 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> German Jews had no choice but to negotiate emigration from Nazi Germany with the Nazis if they wanted to survive. To imply, as Ken did, that Hitler supported Zionism is racist nonsense. Hitler thought that Jews could be exterminated in the Middle East, before the "Final Solution" was put in place.

How do you know what Hitler thought? Before he decided to kill the Jews of Europe, he was expelling them, this is recorded in the documents of the time.

 Cobra_Head 10:42 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> And a huge majority of British Jews thought its leader was himself an antisemite. 

Are you sure? Labour party membership amongst the Jewish community didn't change that much, at the time. This might have been widely reported but figures don't support it, and "huge majority"?

My question still has to be, where did ALL the Anti-Semites go? There has been that many expulsions, so what happened to them all, if the party was SO riddled with Anti-Semites, what's happened, why isn't the news still giving us hourly updates on the Labour / Jewish problem?

For some balance;

The Conservative party code of conduct does not expressly mention antisemitism once – let alone define it.

The party maintains that they have adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Association definition of antisemitism, unlike Labour. The Conservative party code of conduct does include a provision for harassment on the basis of religion and belief, which would presumably be invoked to deal with antisemitic behaviour in the party.

Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that the scandal surrounding Labour is about whether and how it defines antisemitism in its party rules. It is difficult for Theresa May to criticise the Labour on this front – as she did on Wednesday in parliament – when her own party has not specifically mentioned antisemitism in any of its official documents or rulebook.

Post edited at 10:48
 troybison 12:53 Mon
In reply to Cobra_Head:

>I also think one man's racism is other man's protest

The BNP will be pleased to hear that.

Amazing how quickly Israel-Palestine is brought up when the discussion is about British Jews & British antisemitism. I was looking at a Corbynite thread on the  "Jeremy Corbyn is our Prime Minister" group. The topic posted was Chinese spies in parliament. "What about all the Israeli spies?" was the majority response. Quite demented.

 troybison 13:02 Mon
In reply to Cobra_Head:

>This might have been widely reported but figures don't support it

Yes they do. Polls showed the percentage of British Jews who think Corbyn is an antisemite to be in the mid to late eighties. This Survation poll is the latest one where it was 87% with "not sure" roughly equal to "not antisemitic". 

https://www.survation.com/new-polling-of-british-jews-shows-tensions-remain-strong-between-labour-and-the-british-jewish-community/

 troybison 13:40 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> >It annoyed me beyond all belief when it became apparent that alongside the trumped up charges of antisemitism were indeed a load of disgusting racists

> Can you cite cases that were brought against Labour members that were "trumped up", as you claimed?

No, it appears not.

 deepsoup 13:56 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> Amazing how quickly Israel-Palestine is brought up when the discussion is about British Jews & British antisemitism.

And vice-versa: amazing how quickly accusations of antiseminism are made when Israel-Palestine is brought up.  eg: Emma Watson

 Cobra_Head 14:13 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> Amazing how quickly Israel-Palestine is brought up when the discussion is about British Jews & British antisemitism.

Amazing how quickly AS is brought up in any discussion about Palestine! Snap!

I brought it up precisely because of the links people make, if your pro-Palestine, you will at some stage be accused of being AS, this was very relevant to the Labour issue, because that's what was happening in many instances, in other instance, people who were pro-Palestinian rights, use poor language and were called AS, and in some instances there were out and out, racists, probably and sadly, reflecting society as a whole.

Oh! and not a spy, but a diplomat; Shai Masot. His stated aim, on hidden camera to influence Labour Party policy.

Post edited at 14:15
 mondite 14:15 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> "What about all the Israeli spies?" was the majority response. Quite demented.

May did have to boot one Israel official out for trying to interfere with uk politics. So not completely demented.

 Jon Stewart 14:22 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> No, it appears not.

Sure. Off the top of my head, that wanker Margaret Hodge's claim that Corbyn was antisemitism had no basis.

I don't think "a poll says lots of people [who read the right wing press] think he's antisemitic" is evidence - do you?

Later tonight with the help of Google I can go through a bunch of other trumped up charges.

Of course, if you think that criticism of Israeli policy is antisemitic by definition, you're going to find yourself making a lot of unfounded accusations of racism yourself. 

 Cobra_Head 14:23 Mon
In reply to troybison:

> And a huge majority of British Jews thought its leader was himself an antisemite. 

This isn't born out be the number of Jewish Labour supporters though, is it?

So not everyone thinks the same, do they?

In reply to Cobra_Head:

> Oh! and not a spy, but a diplomat; Shai Masot. His stated aim, on hidden camera to influence Labour Party policy.

I thought he was caught trying to persuade some rather junior British political flunky in the conservatives to "take down" Alan Duncan - a tory who has spoken out against the illegal settlements?

All diplomats in political sections (and arguably some other sections also) are ultimately there to try and influence policy in the country of their posting. Otherwise, why pay them and spend money on having embassies?

In reply to Cobra_Head:

> How do you know what Hitler thought? Before he decided to kill the Jews of Europe, he was expelling them, this is recorded in the documents of the time.

I don't think "expelling" is quite the right sentiment. There were many Jews who paid to get out of Germany and other countries under Hitler's control, but they were basically fleeced of all their assets (in many cases) before being allowed to leave.

Don't forget that Nazism had a vision that they would end up being in charge of the whole world, so it didn't matter (at the time) if some Jews were allowed to go elsewhere. Just deal with that bit of the "problem" later, but pick up any potential assets/money now.

There are very few countries (are there any? I don't know) whose handling of the "Jewish refugee" problem before and during WW2 comes up smelling of roses. Certainly the UK's and the USA's handling of it was abysmal, effectively consigning a lot of people to their untimely deaths. Whether the handling was actually antisemitic is argued about a lot; they were certainly antisemitic in the effects that they had.

 Cobra_Head 12:32 Tue
In reply to Michael Hood:

Agreed.

 Cobra_Head 12:34 Tue
In reply to TobyA:

> All diplomats in political sections (and arguably some other sections also) are ultimately there to try and influence policy in the country of their posting. Otherwise, why pay them and spend money on having embassies?

Can't remember the exact details, off hand, there's an Al Jezera program about him, and that's how they caught him on camera. It was a bit more than trying to influence, IIRC.


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