Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

‘Pinkwashing?’ – Forget About Israel

January 5, 2012 9:07 pm 1 comment

The New York Times building in New York. Photo: Haxorjoe.

How does one translate “pinkwashing?”  After I read a New York Times Op-Ed on November 22nd 2011, I understand it as something between using advances in gay rights as a smokescreen, a marketing tool and taking the gay community for a ride, and that it is one of Israel’s latest sins. Because granting rights to homosexuals is part of “a deliberate strategy to conceal the continuing violations of Palestinians’ human rights behind an image of modernity signified by Israeli gay life. Because Israel is marketing itself as a place for gays and lesbians to vacation and because LGBT people ‘mistakenly judge how advanced a country is by how it responds to homosexuality.'”

What was the reaction to the piece from Israel defenders? defense with a little offense. Defense? Israel is a country where LGBT people have rights (among them: common-law marriage, right to adopt, recognition of foreign same-sex marriages) and are protected against discrimination. For good measure, let’s add that this applies to all LGBT people, regardless of religion. Offense?  You can’t be gay anywhere else in the Middle East; Israel is the only democracy in the region; blah, blah, blah.

Forget about Israel! Who cares?  Read the Op-Ed again.  I did – but I replaced Israel with “What-ever-land“ and references to LGBT people with “women.“ The piece did not only scare me – it also peeved and insulted me and made me feel more like a minority than I usually do (which is not at all). The Op-Ed informed me that I am a thief, an oppressor and a tool – all in one package.

Shame on me for having rights when other women don’t: for having rights when other minorities don’t. Should it not be, “Shame on the places that brutally rob women of their rights?” No, I ought to be ashamed that I vote, work and am not sold or mutilated. I should apologize to all you mothers out there who fight for your daughters’ rights to an education, all you women who stand up and risk it all, including your lives. But I also feel compelled to warn you that should you ever prevail, you will be an “oppressor.”  You’re a thief for having rights others don’t have and an oppressor because not all have those rights. You’ll be persecuting not only other women but other minorities, as well.

Seriously, none of those rights are the results of societal response to change, facing old demons, or the usual evolving. No, positive developments are part of some Machiavellian plot, a smoke screen, and I, the weak minority, am too clueless to see through it – or may be willing to participate because of my victim mentality. Whichever way you look at it, I am being used. I have no identity but that of my minority. And as such I should side with other minorities – I should have no thoughts of my own, no likes or dislikes. So let’s add a “nothing” to the list – I am a thief, an oppressor, a tool, and a nothing.

Now, while this Op-Ed was a result of a compulsion to bash Israel, the response it seems to have engendered is an equally pathological need to defend Israel. Can’t we just say that it was irrational, (even crazy) to any sane person, and a slap in the face to anyone who has ever fought for human rights?

1 Comment

  • Vanessa as you fight for human rights -fight too for a secular America.
    For the past two..maybe four years the Republican Party’s candidates have been vying as to which of them is the more ‘Christain’ and thus more deserving of election.
    Remeber the “Straus” affair in Texas http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/12/09/christian-conservative-replace-jewish-speaker-texan-pols-say/

    There are 6 1/2 – 8 million Jews in American they too are as deserving of respect as the Israeli Jews.
    I feel that the GOP has thrown me “under the bus” but Jews accept this from the GOP because of what they fell is support for Israel–Lip Service suppport.
    I live in rural Georgia ..I have farmed and ranched I know the rhetoric outside the Shetl/ghettos of the Northeast,South Florida and a the few dozen metro area suburbias..The Deep South and the midwest are my stomping grounds -the same area that is the heartland of the GOP vote..probably the same folks through whose areas Jews were afraid to traverse..and not these Jews put their security and Israels in the hands of these folks.
    Believe me the love–or non-love for Jews has not changed in the past decades just the David Duke-ing(more politically correct) rhetoric.Away from Jewish populated areas the anti-Semitism is still thriving and almost all its entirety ensconced in the Republican Party.
    Have you spoken out against the “Christian proving” of American candidates ???

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Features World Graves of Jewish Pirates in Jamaica Give Caribbean Tourists Taste of Little-Known History

    Graves of Jewish Pirates in Jamaica Give Caribbean Tourists Taste of Little-Known History

    Tour operators are calling attention to Jamaica’s little-known Jewish heritage by arranging visits to historic Jewish sites on the Caribbean island, including a cemetery where Jewish pirates are buried. A report in Travel and Leisure magazine describes the Hunts Bay Cemetery in Kingston, where there are seven tombstones engraved with Hebrew benedictions and skull and crossbones insignia. According to the report, centuries ago, Jewish pirates sailed the waters of Jamaica and settled in Port Royal. The town, once known as “the wickedest city in the […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Filmmaker Eyal Resh Embraces the Challenge of Telling Israel’s Story (VIDEO)

    Filmmaker Eyal Resh Embraces the Challenge of Telling Israel’s Story (VIDEO)

    JNS.org – Telling Israel’s story. It’s the specific title of a short film that Eyal Resh created last year. It’s also the theme behind the 27-year-old Israeli filmmaker’s broader body of work. The widely viewed “Telling Israel’s Story” film—directed by Resh for a gala event hosted by the Times of Israel online news outlet—seemingly begins as a promotional tourism video, but quickly evolves to offer a multilayered perspective. “I want to tell you a story about a special place for me,” a young woman whispers […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Features Israel Geeks Out: Science, Art and Tech Event Embodies Jewish State’s ‘DNA’

    Israel Geeks Out: Science, Art and Tech Event Embodies Jewish State’s ‘DNA’

    JNS.org – The entrance to Jerusalem’s Sacher Park was transformed from April 25-27 by a fire-breathing robotic dragon, which flailed its arms and attempted to take flight. The robot, a signature feature at Jerusalem’s first-ever “Geek Picnic,” was one of more than 150 scientific amusements available for the public to experience. This particular dragon was designed by students from Moscow’s Art Industrial Institute in conjunction with the Flacon design factory, said Anatasia Shaminer, a student who helped facilitate the display. Children […]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Opinion The Syrian Virgin (REVIEW)

    The Syrian Virgin (REVIEW)

    The Syrian Virgin, by Zack Love. CreateSpace, 2015. The Syrian Virgin, by Zack Love, is a very interesting novel. Equally a political and romantic thriller, at times a real page-turner, it gets you intimately involved in the dire situation in today’s Syria, as well as in the romantic entanglements of its mostly New York-based characters — whose entanglements just might determine the fate of that dire situation in Syria. Along the way it introduces a really important idea that somehow […]

    Read more →
  • Features Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    JNS.org – Aside from Israel itself, those with a vested interest in the Jewish state are accustomed to tracking developments related to Middle East players such as Iran, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. But much global attention has recently focused on the Caucasus region at the Europe-Asia border, specifically on the suddenly intensified violence between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh area of western Azerbaijan. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, while not taking place in Israel’s immediate neighborhood, does have what one scholar called […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Features Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    JNS.org – On Friday, April 22, 196 nations across the world mark Earth Day, the annual day dedicated to environmental protection that was enacted in 1970. Not to be forgotten on this day is Israel, which is known as the “start-up nation” for its disproportionate amount of technological innovation, including in the area of protecting the environment. For Earth Day 2016, JNS.org presents a sampling of the Jewish state’s internal achievements and global contributions in the environmental realm. Water conservation Israeli […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture World New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    Holocaust humor and the role that laughter played in the lives of Jews during World War II are the focus of a documentary that made its world premiere on Monday at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. In The Last Laugh, first- and second-generation survivors, as well as famous Jewish and non-Jewish comedians, discuss their thoughts on when joking about the death camps is appropriate or taboo. “Nazi humor, that’s OK. Holocaust humor, no,” Jewish comedic giant, actor and filmmaker Mel Brooks says in the film. “Anything I […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    JNS.org – Sherri Mandell’s life was devastated on May 8, 2001, when her 13-year-old son Koby was murdered by terrorists on the outskirts of the Israeli Jewish community of Tekoa. Yet Mandell not only shares the story of her loss, but also celebrates the lessons she has learned from tragedy. Indeed, “celebrate” is this Israeli-American author’s word choice. Her second book, The Road to Resilience: From Chaos to Celebration (Toby Press), came out earlier this year. The lesson: in every celebration, there is […]

    Read more →