The Corner


The War on Adjectives

Noah Berlatsky of Forward is unimpressed with my recent essay on fake hate crimes and has come up with a novel response: Fake hate crimes . . . aren’t fake!

He writes:

Anti-Semitism doesn’t require individuals who participate in it to hate Jews, or even to care about Jews.  . . . You don’t have to hate Jews to commit anti-Semitic acts.

I don’t want to argue with Berlatsky about this, for the same reason that I don’t want to argue about metaphysics with a goldfish. But if, for the sake of argument, we accept the premise that anti-Semitic acts do not require anti-Semitism Jew-hating, shouldn’t someone come up with a word for hateful things done to Jews by Jew-haters because they hate Jews?

We used to have a handy adjective for that, but, apparently, that adjective got drunk and is now totally useless.


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