522 Comments

I've got to say, though I appreciate the reporting on this episode, it's extremely jarring to hear James - who possesses a typical example of a violent and predatory male sexuality - referred to as "she" throughout. It genuinely feels dystopian.

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While I'm not jarred by hearing James referred to as she, it is striking that James is a "she" but a detrans woman is "this person." Why this choice of whose identity to honor? Is it because Jesse thinks that James will sue, stalk, and behave in an assaultive manner?

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Maybe he didn't know the person's preferred pronoun?

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Yeah, when I don't know someone's preferred pronoun (and I am in a context in which there is a reasonable possibility someone is trans/nonbinary) I will use "they" or "this person."

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i have been listening from near this podcast’s inception. their position has always been a pragmatic one, where using proper pronouns is primarily done because it doesn’t give detractors a simple way to dismiss their work.

i’m not a fan of denying reality and don’t do so myself, but i 100% understand why a bit of tact is needed here to introduce normies to controversial ideas. most people aren’t sure what is truly hateful anymore, so they listen for keywords.

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In my comment, I was trying to allude to the fact that Jesse, like everyone, makes mistakes. There's an example early in the episode, when Jesse uses "this person" several times to refer to a detrans woman, whose pronouns he knows or can quickly find (she is a public speaker and activist in gender issues). You see, with many people you can afford to make a mistake.

Andrea James is not one such person, going by the episode content. The contrast is striking in how carefully and delicately her pronouns and identity are addressed. Jesse, in his article, didn't even state that James is transgender. I think he was so concerned with not seeming to focus on her trans status, he erred in the other direction.

My comment is a remark on how striking I find the contrast in this instance. It speaks to Andrea James' character that so much caution is observed around her.

In the larger picture, the example of why and how people deal with Andrea James' pronouns (and her putative femaleness) speaks to the character of transgender activism. Precepts of gender ideology are observed often out of caution and strategy, rather than respect or acceptance.

Proponents of gender ideology might be standing on a thin crust over a long fall, rather than on top of any substantial glass (or cotton) ceiling.

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I'm in agreement with Katie and Jesse here. Calling James "he" isn't going to produce any useful result, and is just going to alienate the very people you might want to convince.

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People who don't see that there's a problem here won't be convinced by anything, so I don't much care about alienating them. I care about perpetrators of male pattern violence or stalking being referred to as male, because that is what the truth is, and because that's what will keep them out of female jails, changing facilities and hospital wards once normal people wake the fuck up on this issue.

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I'm not so sure. Lots of people really don't consider the far-ranging consequences of gender ideology, but when you point out some of those consequences--men in women's sports teams or in women's restrooms--they often become more reluctant to sign on. After all, the vast majority of Americans never knowingly encounter a trans person in those situations, so it makes sense they don't think about it very much.

Now I agree that the activists will never be convinced of anything they don't already believe, but they're not the people we need to convince.

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Good pair of posts, TN. The vanguard of today's extreme left wing is saddled with two primary weaknesses (which, of course, become perfidious if they aren't properly exposed and exploited as they often are by the BAR): shit marketing and nincompoop-grade reasoning.

Refusing to respect the gendered terminology that matches a trans person's desired and -- **visually rational** -- expressed gender identity surrenders the high ground on both counts.

Regarding shit marketing, it makes YOU look mean and petty and potentially those with whom you ally most manifestly.

With respect to reasoning, wanton pronoun refusal grants the claim of the vast illiberal proto-Maoist nincompoopery that gender is inextricably linked to sex. Furthermore, it makes it damn hard to argue that the concept of mis-gendering is bogus -- except as a means to forestall disagreement and deify motivated self-actualization -- IF YOU are explicitly engaging in it.

NB: Referring to your opponent as nincompoops and proto-Maoists is probably not smart marketing either, at least in mixed company.

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I totally get where you are coming from. However, I will say that I was very much in the “woke” space until I found this podcast. I was feeling very uncomfortable with the way the rhetoric around trans people was headed, but I was still very much in the “mid gendering is literal violence”mindset until I found this podcast. Since I was terrified of becoming a bigot, I needed to be exposed to new ideas in a language I could understand. By using preferred pronouns I felt safe to listen to this new viewpoint and eventually I was able to break out of the cult mindset I was in.

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Respectfully, Katie and Jesse are liberals, not reactionaries, and respect pronoun preferences.

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Hi, Ms. No. I'm in agreement with you. I can't remember if we've met here before. (I currently have COVID so I'll let that be my excuse for not remembering.)

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I agree that's a valid point that it may be alienating to some you are trying to convince, which is why you explain why you are doing it at the beginning of the discussion. And even given your point, I'm not sure why Jesse was so dismissive of those taking issue with it, when clearly it's understandable that one would be offended by the use when it comes to someone like James or a rapist.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 25, 2023

With all due respect to our hosts: That Jesse and Katie does not quite get the importance of the pronoun thing in this context is...well...annoying, but also destructive. Yes, everyone greatly appreciates Jesse's article pointing out the James story, but not acknowledging the person's real sex *in this particular case* is, in its own way, destructive to the fight against this growing and devastating misogyny.

It is like talking about the chronic historical oppression of women and using the word "mankind" for all humans as you describe it. ("In the history of mankind, women have been chronically oppressed.") It is like talking about the legacy of historical slavery in the U.S. and not acknowledging that the vast majority of people enslaved were Black (and with that, the history of being kidnapped from the African continent), or actually calling those slaves "Caucasians" if that were a word formerly used as the default term for all humans. It is like using the f-word for gay people when talking about how tragic it is that "those people" were considered mentally disordered by the field of psychiatry. It is all derogatory to that oppressed population. The sentiment is positive but the inaccurate or derogatory language embeds the sentiment with more of the same destructiveness. It furthers it in its own way.

If you can't see how acquiescing to calling someone hellbent on overturning progressive culture to the detriment of women a "she" is in itself a cruel insult to all women, and that it furthers the use of that language toward our diminishment and erasing, especially at this pivotal moment in history (when even rapists are granted "she" status at their request), then you need to take one more step backwards. It is easy enough to say at the top of the discussion that you are going to use "he" pronouns considering the circumstances.

I say this knowing how hard it is to enact in my own life as I navigate a minefield of acquaintances and professional contacts in these discussions! But I thought Jesse's dismissiveness of the complaints was worth pushing back against.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 25, 2023

There can be more than one way of approaching the matter. While I can see where you're coming from, here is how I view it. I posted this elsewhere in this thread:

"Re pronouns: just because I refer to my neighbor as my Catholic neighbor doesn't imply that I agree that the Pope is the head of the Christian church. Which is to say, I don't need to refer to him as a Roman catholic or a papist or whatever.

Using people's preferred identifiers in a pluralistic society isn't a denial of reality, it's just civility, imo."

I think it's possible to simultaneously oppose excesses, some of which you describe in your comment. I agree that those are bad. I also think trans women competing in elite sporting events and winning when they were only mediocre competing with men is bad.

But I have no problem using someone's preferred pronoun as a signal of civility in an increasingly polarized and uncivil culture.

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Right, but I emphasized "in this particular case."

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Sorry, I'm not following you then. I don't see why a terrible person needs to be refused their preferred pronoun.

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Because they aren’t worth the mental gymnastics and cognitive dissonance it takes to use wrong-sex pronouns.

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It takes no "mental gymnastics" for me, but then I'm not a virulent transphobe.

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I dunno, sure it probably would have been better for Jesse to describe AJ as a transwoman in his article for clarity, but he says in the episode that he asked the editors to fix that and said he had assumed people would figure it out on their own. Maybe that was a tiny bit sloppy (and something he corrected/acknowledged) but cmon, it's a tiny issue that is causing you to distract from the overall point.

I feel like people who focus on this kind of thing are missing the overall point (and also telling on themselves as anti-trans). It doesn't matter if AJ is a man or a woman or anything in between, what matters is the online behavior/assault on people that AJ perceives as anti-trans.

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Male aggression matters. Leaving that fact out makes a world of difference.

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Dec 3, 2023·edited Dec 3, 2023

I agree that the pattern of aggression by male trans activists matters. I think it's less about them being male, and more about the malignant culture of trans activism and how it specifically elevates anti-social people into leadership. Male leadership is a common feature in a lot of movements but rarely is characterized by this degree of anti-social behavior, so there's a sickness to the culture and values of trans activism. This is a movement with too many prominent trans figures who want to impose their belief system through fear and intimidation. They are breaking a social contract of civility and nonviolence in far more serious ways than the women who refer to them, in reaction, as "he." There is some social benefit when women refer to anti-social trans women as "he" because it is the only negative feedback that many of these trans women ever receive. Also, as many of you point out, it clarifies the situation when a male person is fighting to enter female spaces. I personally don't do sex-based pronouns but I respect women who use male pronouns. They have a persuasive argument when they explain that they're being true to their own belief system (that sex matters) and their values of resisting intimidation and abuse. Women get too much intimidation and abuse and more men need to start relating to why women would become "rude" to the perpetrators. Instead many liberal men have developed a rich language of contemptuous terms for these women, and yet they have nothing comparable for the aggressors.

That being said, I think we could all respect that Jesse and Katie have reasonable explanations for their use of preferred pronouns, too. I don't think I've ever heard them condemn women who use sex-based pronouns and that respect could be mutual.

The violence of trans activism began with its leaders harangueing people for not using approved language, and now I'm wary when other movements do the same.

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"If you can't see how acquiescing to calling someone hellbent on overturning progressive culture to the detriment of women a "she" is in itself a cruel insult to all women..."

This is totally wrongheaded. Maybe just my perspective, but pronouns aren't "earned" by being a decent person. I don't call someone he or she or whatever based on my understanding of their natal sex in context of their moral fitness. It's really 90% about how they look. Someone looks like a woman, then she looks like a woman. Someone looks like a man, then he looks like a man. For that last 10% I'll refer to the not-passing-but-trying trans folks with whatever terms match what they seem to be going for. And when passing through spaces where people care I'll not straight up call out a person who doesn't try.

I think a lot of TERFish folks (and trans folks) need to get with the idea that we can talk about sex and gender in meaningful, concrete, and distinct ways. That it's not the case that you should call a person "she" based on the size of her gametes, but also not based solely on the gametes in her heart. That woman or man can be understood as social categories apart from sex, so you can call a male person like AJ a woman, and also not believe she should have a right to change the sex marker on her birth certificate to F.

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Nov 30, 2023·edited Nov 30, 2023

You seem to not understand that WOMEN are being ERASED. We are chest feeders in medical journals. We are non-men (Johns Hopkins University wrote that.) We are now committing sex crimes in larger numbers...except, of course, we are actually not. Our accomplishments are erased by men who enter women's sports, our safe spaces are deemed unnecessary even as we are not the ones committing the sex crimes...and who is saying they are unnecessary? Those who endanger us. It is EXACTLY the same as the race thing. Rachel Dolenzal and her ilk were committing fraud, absorbing the support meant for people of color, invading community spaces to exploit them. There is ultimately no difference. And women at first did not care about any of this. We were fine with people being trans, we were fine with the pronouns and so much of it. But now we need to draw the line as it seems to have become a quest to erase our very being. And that is no exaggeration.

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"You seem to not understand that WOMEN are being ERASED."

While the attempts to spare the feelings of some trans people has resulted in de-sexed, obscurantist language, it's not ERASING women, anymore than the linguistic regime it's replacing is ERASING transexuals. It's hurting your feelings maybe, as "breast feeding" no doubt hurt some transman's feelings somewhere. But women (adult human females) exist, and calling adult human females "chest feeders" instead of "breast feeders" doesn't erase their very being, nor does calling a transexual adult human female who nurses his child a "breast feeder" erase his being. That's hyperbolic, and an exaggeration.

Perhaps a weak form of the Sapir–Whorf hypothesis is at play here, as the ultimate problem is policies that fail to distinguish between gender and sex. For example, should a transexual woman be housed in the genpop of a women's prison because she's a woman, or men's prison because she's male? The answer is neither, because she's a risk to adult human females, and at risk from non-transexual adult human males (and prisons should be locations of reform, not violence and abuse, but one topic at a time). The foolish equivocation between the physical bodies of transexual and non-transexual people should be resisted on both sides. That's a perfectly good line to draw. I just strongly disagree with a black-and-white approach. It's more complicated than that.

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But do you notice a PATTERN HERE? A pattern that's been going on since, I dunno, the beginning of civilization? Can women have two seconds of equity? Two seconds of parity? No. Apparently not. Look at the big picture. WHAT IS THE PATTERN WE KEEP SEEING?

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Yeah, I'm not blind to the anti-female bias, I'm just not with the black-and-white thinking and doomer rhetoric. Get your caps lock fixed.

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For some reason, "she" wasn't as jarring as "woman". When James is referred to as she I roll my eyes. When James is referred to as a woman it does not compute.

Just call these people by their name and dispense of the pronouns entirely.

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

There have been episodes on this very podcast about women who exhibit dangerous, stalkerish behavior. As if this is a domain for men only. Please.

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Yeah, it's wild to me that people don't understand the pronoun thing. I think this podcast attracts trans haters and people who can't see beyond their own biases and personal experiences which is unfortunate.

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I don't really care what Jesse calls him and I understand the reasoning behind using "she" pronouns for a man in this case. But just because someone disagrees and thinks that a man should be called "he" in all cases doesn't mean they don't understand or come from a place of "hate."

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I honestly don't understand why you think they should not be calling Andrea James "she." It's not like Jesse and Katie disagree with the concept of trans people existing or being able to change their gender identity, and they generally try to respect people's preferred pronouns. Why should they not do that with Andrea James?

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Would you go out of your way to be respectful to John Wayne Gacy?

Same principal here. It’s just on a continuum.

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I wouldn't randomly call John Wayne Gacy "she," because that would be confusing and obnoxious.

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Lol right? For the same reason I wouldn't just misgender anyone I was arguing with or mad at because it's such a weird way to insult someone. There's plenty of ways to call out someone's *actual* bad behavior. Misgendering someone is a great way to undermine your own actual point and make you look like an asshole (unless your actual point is that you don't think being transgender is real, which is not what Jesse and Katie's stance is)

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Lol that is such an exaggerated example but yeah, I would call John Wayne Gacy "he" or "she," depending on how he identified, for the reasons I describe below. And also maybe I worded my comment sloppily but by "respect people's pronouns" I didn't mean they do it to *show respect*, just that they try to *adhere* to what people ask to be called, for a few reasons.

It especially makes sense in cases like this bc to insist on calling Andrea James "he" is just confusing (since everyone knows her as "she"); it would also be petty and distract from the larger issue of her online behavior, which was the point of the episode; and finally it would automatically paint them as some kind of biased anti-trans activists themselves, which they aren't, and undermine the actual point they're trying to discuss (her online behavior). Like I said, their issue is not that Andrea James is a trans woman or that her pronouns are she/her, their issue with AJ is her insane online behavior.

The fact you can't see that makes me question your judgment and biases tbh. I guess this podcast gets a bunch of nut jobs who hate trans people but Katie and Jesse's mission with gender-related issues like this is the cultural discussion/journalism coverage/science behind the issue, not the fact that people want to identify a certain way (it gets murkier when the conversation is about "social transitioning" and weird they/them/xir stuff, which some people just consider stupid).

It's clear that Andrea James is sincere in her trans identity so why not call her "she" ? I imagine they might not *adhere* to someone's preferred pronouns if it were obvious that they were just using it as a front for something, even though I don't really know what that situation would look like. Maybe something like that school shooter who suddenly decided to start going by they/them for PR reasons?

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Andrea James' "typical example of a violent and predatory male sexuality" you describe (your words, and I disagree) actually isn't an issue about being male or female, it's just the central question about the politics surrounding trans cultural/science/journalism discussion that Katie and Jesse focus on. Saying that it's obviously a predatory male sexuality thing so Andrea James should clearly be called "he/him" makes me think you're approaching this from a biased POV. If AJ was clearly faking some kind of trans/she/her identity for PR purposes or whatever it would make sense to call her out on that, but that isn't the case here. She's clearly a transwoman

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James does look quite feminine. Maybe she possesses a violent and predatory feminine sexuality.

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I'd like to see untouched photos before saying there is anything "feminine" about James

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To say that a change in someone's political beliefs is due to being "driven crazy by gender stuff" is way too dismissive. Many people are understandably alarmed at how quickly the new faith-based gender orthodoxy has been embraced by all mainstream institutions, including the federal government, schools, and the medical establishment. What's really crazy-making is when journalists refer to a hateful, vindictive, scheming man as a woman, out of respect for his self-proclaimed identity.

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I think that gender criticism can absolutely be a gateway to right-wing beliefs.

To some extent I get it; some on the left are so completely ensorcelled by gender jihadism that it can feel like a relief to see Matt Walsh effortlessly humiliate those gender experts in "What is a Woman." That said, I never, ever forget that Walsh is opposed to me, does not want me on his side, and wants to limit my experience of the world. So although he and I agree on one narrow topic, he's not someone I want to associate with.

Speaking for myself, I am 100% comfortable being pro-choice, pro-Biden, pro-Medicare-for-all....AND pro-gender-criticism.

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Given the price that we are paying for the Biden administration's gender-affirmative policies and attitudes, I may decide that I will have to disregard everything I agree with the Dems on and become a one-issue voter. I do hate that it's seen as a right-wing stance. Until three years ago I considered myself far left on almost everything.

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I really can't see how the Biden administration has that much influence, or how a hypothetical Trump administration would do anything constructive against the problems you describe.

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The Biden administration changed the applications for passports and Social Security to substitute Gender for Sex--with M, F, and X as the options, which anyone is free to change at any time for any reason or no reason. They have also redefined sex to include gender identity under various antidiscrimination laws. And Biden has supported the need for "gender-affirming care" for minors. I know I come across as some kind of right-wing crackpot even mentioning these things, but I don't think self-ID and medicalization of gender nonconformity are good directions to be going.

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Oh, and as someone pointed out earlier, Biden's SCOTUS nominee did not know what a woman is.

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She knew, she just didn't have the guts to say it. I don't support a party too cowardly to speak the truth.

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I don't think you are a crackpot, no; I just disagree on the weight given these measures. (Some of which, to be sure, I don't like.) My view is that while Biden could be better on gender, Donald Trump would like to end democracy and turn the nation into his personal ATM. That, to me, is an easy choice.

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You're more charitable than I; claiming that implementing a straightforward statutory-interpretation precedent issued by a 6-3 conservative court is "redefin[ing] sex to include gender identity" is either malicious lying or extreme crackpottery.

The simple fact is that anyone who wants to vote Trump on these grounds already wanted to vote Trump for other reasons anyway (likely being pissy about price increases, which is fairly typical for the sort of upper-middle-class posters who frequent these parts), and is looking for an excuse to hang their hat on.

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It's really frustrating hearing people already proclaiming that it will be Trump vs Biden again. It doesn't have to be this way. Maybe if we had more people on the right voting for people other than Trump we would get better candidates. So yes, come over to right, vote for someone other than Trump in the primaries.

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Dream on. Dream on. There is not one of the Republican clowns near Trump. Biden will crush any opponent.

It’s Trump v Biden.

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Obama made it possible for men who ID as women to be sent to federal women's prisons. Trump undid that. It's the only good thing I've ever said about him. Biden, the guy I voted for, undid that right after he took office. Democrats are actively causing physical and emotional harm to incarcerated women to placate progressive donors and it's vile.

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That's great and all but this 2x Obama, Hillary, and Biden voter has had enough of Dems betraying women & girls. I'm a single issue voter on this. I cannot support a party that pushes policies that result in incarcerated women (nearly all survivors of rape, often multiple times over their lives) being locked up with fully intact men who identify as women. It's cruel & unusual punishment. We can't lock up & women POWs together according to the Geneva Convention, but Dems are making that happen domestically and it's inexcusable.

Also, the gaslighting of a generation of girls and young women being forced, by Dem policies, to share locker rooms with boys who identify as girls. Their consent is irrelevant according to Dems, and in my state of Vermont a public school tried to punish girls on a volleyball team for objecting. It was only when a conservative law firm filed suit did the school back down and settle. Over and over I see this.

Dems can't stand up for women & girls if, according to them, anyone can identify in those groups.

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GCs are going to GC 🙄

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Women can't be hateful, vindictive and scheming? Sexist!

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Sure they can. And I will call them all women.

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I was being glib but, in all seriousness, my question is what someone's terribleness has to do with how they Identify.

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

Using wrong sex pronouns for someone causes me cognitive dissonance and also some linguistic gymnastics. I know it’s a man. But he thinks hes a woman, so I have to call him by female pronouns. It’s a pain in the ass! And more importantly, it makes it impossible to argue for women’s rights. How can we fight for sex based sports if we are calling men “she”? It makes the entire argument non sensical if we can’t refer to, say, Lia Thomas, as a man. Example: “ Lia Thomas fights for her right to be on the woman’s team” versus: “Lia Thomas fights for his right to be on the women’s team”.

Bottom line: il not going to do the cognitive dissonance thing for an asshole. And I’m not going to concede to a new custom that makes it more difficult for women to exert their rights.

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Dude, the fact that you can't just keep up with the fact that they're talking about Andrea James with she/her pronouns and that she's a transwoman who used to be a man makes me think you're being intentionally biased about this and also don't understand what Jesse/Katie are actually talking about.

You saying you're not going to do the "cognitive dissonance thing" is literally you just not wanting to make the tiny tiny effort to make the connection about who they're talking about? Which you obviously have already done because you know who they're talking about. Try not to let tiny personal issues distract you from the overall point.

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Dude, I can absolutely "keep up" with it. Never said I couldn't. You are fighting with yourself here. This piece explains the cognitive dissonance piece well.

https://fairplayforwomen.com/pronouns/

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Once a man, always a man.

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Ross Tucker has made many cogent critiques of the fairness of including trans women in women's sports without ever, to my knowledge, even unintentionally misgendering someone.

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Shall we all send him a cookie?

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-I don't find it difficult and it doesn't give me a pain in the ass. It just doesn't make a difference to me one way or the other. ITSM that it only matters if one feels an ideological point is inherently being made. I feel like it's the same as how my mom had to use the word homosexual and couldn't use the word gay. She felt like using the latter implied condoning, which she couldn't do.

-I concede that the issue of sports has been difficult, it's not impossible. Multiple international organizations have recently concluded that the line should be drawn at whether a person has gone through male puberty. That seems fair to me. Took a minute, but I feel like we're on the way to that issue being resolved.

-And it doesn't make any sense to me to call bad people papists and good people Catholics.

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Not much really. It just seems that someone who behaves so despicably is especially unworthy of deference to his assumed identity.

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We aren't polite to people because they've somehow earned it politically.

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I don't see what despicable behavior has to do with politics. And I don't think it's either polite or impolite to refer to someone as what he actually is. I'm not going to politely tell the naked emperor that he has lovely clothes, unless he's a 5-year-old who knows that we are playing make believe.

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But why does it seem that way? I'm not trying to be pedantic, I just honestly don't see how the two are connected.

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Whether right or wrong, I think it's fairly common for people to decide that a person who acts abhorrently is unworthy of respect. I didn't mean to suggest that the acceptance of self-ID should be based on whether someone is a good person.

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That's because they are completely unconnected.

If the goal was simply to insult bad people, then they would nonsensically misgender cis women. It's not; the goal is to enact bigotry on what is deemed to be an acceptable target, as a gateway to normalizing it for all trans people. It's in the same vein as Der Sturmer running stories about "Jewish crime" every time a Jew got arrested.

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Also, that happens to be whom this episode was about.

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Not because of their behavior.

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I think the "evangelical Zionists" claims are way overblown - that is a weird regional thing that isn't shared by most evangelicals. My parents met during an evangelical revival and my mom worked at an evangelical magazine and watched the 700 Club every day, and they had never heard of Christian Zionism until I asked them about it after seeing a Vice documentary on the subject.

I think most Christians support Israel because the Israelis let everyone visit the Holy Land, and they see themselves as closer to Jews than Muslims - at least Christians and a Jews share the Torah, whereas Muslims believe in a new and alien set of scriptures that they claim supercede both Christianity and Judaism.

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It’s left-wing cope so they can pretend religious conservatives are all antisemitic but of course antisemitism doesn’t exist on the left, nope, not at all.

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I agree that the claims are overblown. My own support of Israel, as a Christian raised person, comes from the fact that one side wants peace, the other side wants extermination. It’s a pretty simple line for me. That doesn’t mean either side is exempt from ridicule or responsibility for their actions though.

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Say what you will about Palestinian objectives, but the idea that Israel "wants peace" is laughable. They have-- repeatedly, specifically, with eyes open-- elected governments whose public position is that Israel should conquer its neighbors. Netanyahu specifically won voters over with his promises to obstruct any efforts at permanent peace.

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This is not a fair characterization of what’s happening. The Israeli government is not opposed “peace” in a general sense, but certain factions are opposed to a two-state solution. They believe that Israel controlling the whole region *IS* the only chance at lasting peace. And you know what? I don’t f’ing blame them for that anymore. Before I knew anything about this conflict, I couldn’t understand why anyone would be against Palestinian statehood, but now I do. I would not want a sovereign nation in my backyard that’s full of people who are determined to exterminate me and everyone I love. For Israel, allowing the Palestinians to have their own state would be legitimately suicidal. Now even just retreating from Gaza, which was supposed to bring some semblance of peace, looks like a huge mistake in hindsight. You can still disagree with that strategy or with steps Israel has taken in pursuit of it, but it would be nice to show a commitment to accurately explaining what’s going on.

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You cannot seriously be contending that "peace via annexation and apartheid" represents a plausible interpretation of the word. You're well into Humpty Dumpty territory at that point; it's the kind of propaganda a Roman Emperor might use to justify invading and conquering some irritating barbarian tribe. (And there's no logical stopping point to it; it would justify invading every neighboring country of Israel that has ever been involved in a war with it, might be involved in a war with it, or might one day think about going to war with it.)

Tacitus had a nice turn of phrase to describe this thinking: "ubi solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant", "they make a desolation and call it peace". That's stood the test of time in a way that none of the braying, trumpeting rhetoric of the emperors did.

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Now today we have Netanyahu reiterating that he will prevent Palestinian statehood in Gaza, and also "Judea and Samaria."

These delusional reads of Israeli opinion just keep looking worse and worse. They want war.

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Yes the Israelis want to exterminate the Palestinians.

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Hahahaha. Thats hilarious. Have a good night man.

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You're a psychopath

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I am utterly unbothered by whatever opinion you want to have of me. Your statement was absurd, as the Israelis could have glassed Gaza and the West Bank in less than a week at any point for probably the last 40 years. And yet, we are still here with the world upset with Israel for not responding “proportionally” after Hamas has been intentionally sending rockets with intent to kill civilians and then murdering over a thousand innocents in a day. Now they, and their supporters, are crying because Israel has had enough of their bullshit.

Israel is indeed worthy of criticism and there is much that can be fairly levied against them. Accusations of attempted extermination are hilarious to me because even if that was their goal, they would be at that point reciprocating the same hostility that they face.

Anyway. Have a good night man. Think of me what you will.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 27, 2023

We aren't talking about what they could have done...what they ARE doing is genocide according to the Geneva Convention. I get it that you think Palestinians are animals and their children deserve death but maybe you could shut up about it while.in public?

People like you disgust me. Children are not Hamas terrorists and you can't keep people in a concentration camp their entire life, murder them indiscriminately for decades and then act surprised when they become violent against their oppressors.

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People like you are the reason why the term genocide has largely been reduced to a meaningless slur.

You lurch between trying to an appeal its definition in international law (despite conflating the Geneva Conventions, other war crimes and the Genocide Convention) and “but they’re killing children”.

You’re engaged in a completely unserious moral cos play.

You’re are the worst kind of friends the Palestinians could have, reducing a genuinely complex issue to political team sports.

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How many children need to be bombed before you'll admit it's genocide. Give me a number or a percentage please.

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Good grief, you’re chucking around a term it would appear you’ve made no effort to even try and understand. You’re not showing yourself to be a serious person.

Either please stop, or may just rant at people who might be impressed by your moral cos play.

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

I understand it FAR more than you obviously bc you're DENYING A HOLOCAUST right now.

Thousands of children have been MURDERED by f-ing bombs but yea...let's pretend it's not ethnic cleansing even when Israel straight up says they are intentionally killing civilians. They killed babies by turning off their incubators. They bombed a refugee camp after telling people to go there!

Israel is doing to the Palestinians what the Nazis failed to do to them. Put them all in camps and exterminate them. Israeli officials have literally called for the NUKING OF GAZA! Do you deny these things?!?!?!

No you don't bc they are facts. You're just gaslighting people as if I can't see interviews with Israeli officials saying out oud that Palestinians are animals.

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If the Israelis “want to exterminate the Palestinians”, given they have the capacity why aren’t they?

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If the Israelis “want to exterminate the Palestinians”, given they have the capacity why aren’t they?

Perfunctory throat clearing: "not all Israelis but definitely the current radical right-wing government" "I condemn Hamas as a genocidal right wing group" etc

Because they'll get less push back by doing it slowly through attrition. They've been stealing the homes of Palestinian Arabs, refusing to allow those who left to return, pushing illegal settlements, and engaging in collective punishment, killing Palestinian civilians in numbers often 10 times over what was done to them. They're "allowing" Palestinians to flee to other countries, but they'll never let them back.

The end-game for the current government is expulsion or eradication, though they're obviously not going to go so hard that they squander all their sympathy and good will from their simps in the international community. Even China has nice clean "re-education" camps for their Uyghurs, and the junta running Myanmar hasn't wiped out all the Rohingya. It's not 1945 anymore, you gotta have good PR if you're gonna do an ethnic cleansing.

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Sounds nice in theory but given that the Palestinian population is growing and growing faster than Israel if the goal really was extermination it doesn’t really stand up.

I would be happy to accept those individuals actions are unjust, but implying there’s an overarching genocidal agenda at play is pure projection.

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It seems the actual population growth rate in Israel is 1.9%. In the West Bank it's 1.69%, and in Gaza it's 2.02%. Israel's grown from about 6.3m in 2000 to about 9.7m today, while what remains of Palestine has grown from 3m to about 5.2m, estimated. That's a little faster than Israel, but they're working from a lower number and just watch when the numbers start approaching parity between the State of Israel and those ever-shrinking reservations...er, townships...I mean territories. Any right-wing government in power will see to it that the population drops. First choice is always expulsion to Egypt or Jordan. That's what they're offering the Palestinians now while they're bombing the shit out of them. Deprive them of sanitation, money, calories, like they do right now. Outright killing is hard to get away with without upsetting the international order, but right now they've shaved 10-15k off, and not a single supportive government has peeled off from their side. That's nothing to sneeze at.

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

What's the matter? They're not doing it fast enough for you to care? Tell me...how many children do they need to bomb in order for you to decide it is genocide?

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Mary Katherine Ham made this very point on the Fifth Column the other day. Like a number of other posters here, she has been around evangelical Christians all her life and never heard anyone express the views about Israel and the End Times that the MSM is claiming. Her statement was very much like what you said: they support Israel b/c it's a democratic government surrounded by authoritarian states, and it allows Christians to visit places important in the New Testaement. Unfortunatley, a lot of those places are located in the West Bank, where, if Christians were to try to visit them, they would likely be met with a huge blast of Love and Peace from The Religion of Love and Peace.

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Nov 24, 2023·edited Nov 24, 2023

Christian Zionism (that is, particular beliefs connecting the state of Israel to the end times) is more specific to certain denominations/traditions than certain regions.

More widespread among evangelicals of many traditions is a more generic support of the state of Israel for philosemitic reasons that have nothing to do with an understanding of prophecies about the end times.

You can hold to the first set of beliefs and/or the second. My childhood evangelical denomination didn't get into the end-times stuff, but our median member was pretty friendly to the state of Israel. Contrast that with our mainline counterpart, which was not friendly to Israel on an institutional level and got big into the BDS movement around 10 years ago. A classic set of cases of politics and culture coloring the split between evangelical and mainline denominations that had parted ways with each other only as recently as the 1970s.

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P. S. I definitely endorse your second paragraph. The persistence of Christian academic biblical scholarship and the popularity of church-related trips to the Holy Land are hugely influential on Christian culture in the United States.

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“All our shit’s there” - Michael C. Moynihan

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That was so funny. But also if you're Christian-y, and like to read the bible, probably a third of your reading is going to be the Old Testament.

Like the Psalms, for instance. So we share a LOT of words too

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It's wild how progressive some mainline churches became - e.g. Episcopal church officials in New York assisted a FALN terrorist who accidentally detonated a bomb in his apartment (after bombing a restaurant and killing four people) from the authorities in the 70s.

https://www.nytimes.com/1977/04/01/archives/episcopal-leaders-badly-split-in-fight-on-hispanic-panel-episcopal.html

https://content.time.com/time/subscriber/article/0,33009,947279,00.html

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Wow, I did not know about this incident! Thanks for the link!

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For me, it’s more than wild -- it’s disturbing. My father is a lifelong far-left activist and Protestant minister but I was still shocked to hear him recently, after a few drinks, compare Israeli citizens to terrorists and suggest that they should all be moved from the ME to the U.S.

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Interesting. I am coming to the conclusion that regarding the intersection of religion and politics, I know nothing.

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Yes indeed, the intersection of religion and politics is very troubling. It seems like we are on the verge of becoming a theocracy.

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Please take your meds, Archibald

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I will take them after the pastors take over the government. You betcha.

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I posted re this above but it’s fascinating to me where this is coming from. I’ve literally never heard it from a single Christian.

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I'm Catholic, and my support for Israel has 0 to do with the Holy Land or how close I see Judaism and Christianity vs Islam and Christianity (I would say all worship the same, and only, God, but Jews and Muslims have a more similar understanding of that God than Christians do, given the whole Trinity thing). I don't discriminate among people based on their scriptures either (I would happily vote for Mitt Romney these days).

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I grew up with an AoG Mom 50 years ago and it was already a big thing *then*. I’m happy for you having saner relatives than I had, but accept that that’s not a universal.

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Sure, but Assemblies of God is like 3% of Evangelical Christians in the US- even if there are 10 million Evangelical Zionists that's like 10% of the Evangelicals in the US, that is not anywhere near a plurality let alone a majority

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I've known people who think like this. Some of them really do have pull in policy circles.

I mean, compare it the usual lefty hobby horses of BARpod: trans activists and Black psudo-radicals.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2018/05/14/half-of-evangelicals-support-israel-because-they-believe-it-is-important-for-fulfilling-end-times-prophecy/

"The LifeWay poll also asked evangelical respondents what factors contribute to their support for the state of Israel. More than 6 in 10 cited God’s pledge to Abraham. The third-most-cited reason was that the existence of Israel was necessary for fulfilling prophecy. More than half of evangelicals said that was a reason they supported Israel’s existence."

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*a* reason, not *the* reason, thanks for sharing a poll that basically confirms what I said.

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Their reason is "Religious indoctrination". The fact that there are many facets of their religon which indoctrinate them to blindly support Israel is not really relevant here.

They believe they will be spiritually punished if they don't.

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No, we don’t, but many thanks for atheistsplaining our own religion to us.

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We Christians do not support Israel because of the end times. I keep hearing lefties saying that and it's really inaccurate.

Yes, some Christians believe that Jesus won't come back until the Jewish temple is rebuilt on the Temple Mount (I THINK that's what it is, I've been in evangelical Christianity my whole life and I'm only sort of sure that's what it is). But I don't know of any Christians who are actively trying to make Jesus come back sooner. In fact, the Bible says that no one knows the time; we're also busy living our lives, not trying to bring about the end times.

The reason Christians support Israel is that the Jews are God's chosen people, and the Bible also says something along the lines of "woe to those who turn their backs on God's chosen people." Then of course there's just normal conservative politics: Israel is an ally, the only democracy in the Middle East, they've been attacked and persecuted by their Islamic nation neighbors since 1948, and that whole Holocaust thing, etc.

I think what's happening is that lefties hear other lefties, like Briahna Joy Gray, say that Christians are Zionists because of the end times stuff, and they repeat it.

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I’ve literally only heard this theory from secular Jews and lefties. I’ve been swimming in evangelical waters in several states and several different denominations for 50 years and I have never heard anyone say anything even vaguely like this as a reason to support Israel. It’s bizarre. I have no idea where this silly rumor started but it’s either so regionally or denominationally niche that I’ve never heard it or it’s utter bulls**t. Why do they want to believe it so badly? It’s weird!

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Catholics don't believe this. Only evangelicals and Baptists and other American Christians denominations. It's widespread in the USA.

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No it’s not.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 25, 2023

Yes...it is a basic belief of all evangelicals. Half of them believe it according to wapo article below. Gw Bush believed it. They also believe in predestination which means no matter how they behave while on earth they are guaranteed to get into heaven or go to hell. Their worldy actions have no impact.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2018/05/14/half-of-evangelicals-support-israel-because-they-believe-it-is-important-for-fulfilling-end-times-prophecy/

"The LifeWay poll also asked evangelical respondents what factors contribute to their support for the state of Israel. More than 6 in 10 cited God’s pledge to Abraham. The third-most-cited reason was that the existence of Israel was necessary for fulfilling prophecy. More than half of evangelicals said that was a reason they supported Israel’s existence."

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Do you actually know any American evangelicals? Because I do, and this is ridiculous. Now I’m curious why you’re so determined to push this narrative in spite of evangelicals here and elsewhere insisting that their support of Israel has nothing to do with this.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 25, 2023

Yes. Read my other posts. Evangelicals are happy to tell you about this stuff when Israel isn't murdering thousands of children on TV

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Evangelicals do not believe in predestination. They believe in free will. You are confusing the concept of predestination with the concept of salvation by faith alone. Evangelicals are supposed to believe in salvation by faith alone, but interestingly, a significant number of churches seem to hedge on in it practice - otherwise the concept of "backsliding" wouldn't represent a threat to salvation.

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Some Calvinists go off on a whole "there are only 144k names in the book of the lamb so you are born elect or you aren't" but that is quirky and not at all mainstream.

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Tomato vs to- mah-toe

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You can speak on behalf of yourself as a Christian, but unlike sex, Christianity exists on a spectrum with current end-points being the Westboro Baptist Church and the Unitarian Universalist Association — and then many, many shades between them. Your beliefs, and the beliefs you have engaged with, are no more typical of Christianity than any specific hue can represent color itself.

Try googling “the end times and Israel” and you will find dozens of websites making claims like this: “In Ezekiel 37 and 38, the Bible speaks of the regathering of Israel, and then it speaks of a large force from her north attacking her. That force is identified as Magog. Who is Magog? Listen, no one can say with absolute certainty... The Bible says that Magog will come against her will; the Bible describes hooks in her jaws, pulling her forward almost as though Magog is coming in reluctantly along with her ally, Persia (or Iran)...” [https://harvest.org/resources/gregs-blog/post/war-in-israel-a-fulfillment-of-bible-prophecy/]

Liberty University, coming from the same end of the spectrum, will tell you, “One of the major Divine purposes for the tribulation in relation to Israel is the conversion of the Jewish remnant to faith in Jesus as their Messiah. This will take place throughout the tribulation, but by the end of the seven-year period the entire number of the elect remnant will become converted to Jesus. That number is likely a third of the Jewish people as noted in Zechariah 13:9. ‘And I will bring the third part through the fire, refine them as silver is refined, and test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, and I will answer them; I will say, «They are My people» and they will say, «The LORD is my God.»’ As part of the process of bringing the Jewish remnant to faith Zechariah 13:8 speaks of a purging out of the non-elect Jewish element from the nation...”

You can readily find people online reacting to the Hamas attack, and its Iranian supporters, as confirmation of their belief that the rapture will soon be upon us. It’s really not a “silly rumor”; it’s just not the kind of Christianity with which you are familiar.

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I grew up during the cold war and gog and magog were interpreted to be the Soviet union in my church.

Hal Lindsey's the late great planet earth was a very influential book in many evangelical circles in the 70s.

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The lefties say a lot of nutty stuff but they are not wrong about evangelical support for Israel being based on an obsession with the book of revelations and the of the world narrative with the establishment of Israel. This is not new at all. All the major mouths of the evangelical movement in the past, like Robertson, Falwell or Graham ranted this stuff. The Israelis themselves have supported the Evangelical views because it has resulted in massive military support for Israel over the decades. Netanyahu has given speeches to Evangelicals in order to drum up support for Israel. Even though he is going to hell by their insistence.

What is troubling is that the Trumpy Republican party is in thrall to the Evangelicals and fall over themselves to get their votes.

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Thank you for getting this discussion back on track. Most people have no idea how crazy some of the religious figures around Trump are and the insane belief systems they're spreading.

For more information, listen to the following two episodes of the Politicology podcast:

Holy War

Amid the sea of Trump flags outside the Capitol on January 6th, there were signs that read "Jesus is my Savior, Trump is my President." A group of protestors carried a giant cross as they marched around the Capitol.

Why were these Christian images on prominent display? What role did Charismatic Christianity play in the buildup to the riot at the capitol? How is it continuing to shape our politics?

In this two-part episode, Matthew Taylor (writer and creator of the audio-documentary series “Charismatic Revival Fury: The New Apostolic Reformation" ) joins Ron Steslow to discuss how the non-denominational Charismatic Christianity built to the attack on January 6th and what it will mean going forward.

Part 1: https://politicology.com/episodes/holy-war-pt1-110824/

Part 2: https://politicology.com/episodes/holy-war-pt-2-112223/

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It is amazing to realize that Christianity started as a failed Jewish messiah cult that a Roman mass murderer named Paul transformed into a universal messiah cult. The cult became the Roman state religion and then was taken up by the barbarians who destroyed the Roman Empire. All these centuries later it is still with us infecting our minds and politics. Truly amazing.

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How amazing must Jesus have been?

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Who really knows? Paul created Christianity and created the amazing Jesus to be the universal messiah. Considering the radical influence of this religion over the centuries, it makes more sense to say that Paul was the amazing one.

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Insane luck and circumstance does not require an amazing person. It just requires someone to be in the right place at the right time, and history follows from that. Jesus was most likely very ordinary.

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He was not the messiah. He was just a naughty boy.

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Fairy tales, pure and simple. I'd sooner memorize and old Yellow Pages than fill my head with the tenets of any religion.

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I agree they are Fairy Tales but the fact remains that humans seem to have a need for these tales. We all thought that religion would fade away after the Enlightenment and the rise of reason and science. But it hasn’t. If anything it has mutated and gone down different paths. Look at the rise of the gender fairy tales discussed here. Humans have a huge need for the illusions given by irrational doctrines. You and I can’t stop this, we can only hope they don’t kill us for not believing their nonsense.

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Well said!

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He was not the messiah. He failed. Paul created the religion that still infects our minds to today.

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My wife's parents are staunch believers that this is the end times and the rapture will occur before they die. They are early 60s. They specifically state that Joe Biden is possessed by demons and Israel must be defended so the Jews of the world can return and begin Armageddon.

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It may no longer be true, but in the evangelical circles I grew up in it was very much a thing in the 1980s.

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As horrifying as it is, I find it somewhat amusing that the feminine archetype James seems to be choosing to emulate is the psychotic, stalkerish, single white female trope from 1990s erotic thrillers.

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I wonder how this works exactly. A significant number of trans women choose to model their appearance and demeanor based on existing archetypes in film. Is it a conscious choice or is it unconsciously something they repeat. Why don't they just choose to be a version of themselves that takes estrogen and has surgery done on them instead of this other person?

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Presumably because they are trying to be someone they identify as, which _isn't_ necc a "female version of them" but rather their idea of a female -

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Haha. Spot on..Jennifer Jason Leigh "transformed" into Bridget Fonda. And Rebecca de Mornay wanted to transform into Annabella Sciorra.

And of course several dozen Lifetime movies where a psycho woman kills or kidnaps a woman and assumes her identity.

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...also from real life.

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Happy birthday! Also, just started listening to the ep, but I like how Meghan Murphy takes issue with being called a Trump supporter, and then proceeds to say she would vote for Trump over Biden. Bit of an eye roll moment.

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I think there's a difference between actually supporting a political figure and saying that they're the lesser of two evils.

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Given Meghan's issue of choice, it seems rational that she might want to vote against the person who nominated someone the the Supreme Court who could not define the term "woman".

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I disagree in an American political context (although she’s Canadian, so it doesn’t matter) - given the winner-take-all nature of our voting system and the fact that unless third parties suddenly become as competitive as the other two parties they serve as spoilers, supporting one candidate over another makes you a supporter IMO. You are allowed to disagree with your preferred presidential candidate and still be a supporter.

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The very nature of the American system means people are forced to vote for someone they don't support in order to keep out someone they consider more dangerous.

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What could possibly be the difference between 'voting for' and 'supporting'?

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Whether most of the things you say about a person are good or bad. Whether you'd vote for them instead of someone you like.

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I’m kind of in her camp. I think trump did quite a few good things as president. I also think he’s a sociopath. His meme quality as a president is hilarious as well. I am not a big trump guy, I don’t think that he should be running. I want all of the 75+ year old members of the of Washington establishment gone. All of them. I think 80 would maybe be ok for the SC. All of that said, if it’s trump vs Biden....trump gets my vote 10/10 times. I’m homeless though. I don’t like the group think, or the punishing of wrong-think on either side.

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"I'm PoLiTIcaLLy HomElESs"

[votes robotically for far-right candidates up and down the ballot]

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Bro, chill. That’s not how we talk here. We don’t mock each other. We communicate like grown-ups.

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Yeah, no, fascists cosplaying as moderates are going to get mockery from me every day of the week and twice on Sunday. I see no reason to respect liars.

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If you think trump is far right.......I’m not sure what to tell you man. He’s a moderate, and a populist. Honestly I would wager that the representation in Washington right now is more extreme, to the left and right, than the constituency. Most people are more centrist than extremist.

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Ah yes, the guy who wants to destroy the civil service, entrench himself in power forever, stack the courts with ideologues who think things like "can we really prove the Framers would have taken guns away from husbands who just wanted to keep their wives in line with a little physical discipline" are sensical legal questions, and collect tens of millions of dollars in bribes from foreign governments sure seems moderate to me!

Oh, and those tax cuts that go near-exclusively to the top 1%! Such populist, very authenticity.

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Well, getting rid of large portions of the civil

Service and replacing them with elected people is an argument for more democracy-not less. You have no proof whatsoever that he wants anything more than a second term as president. BTW Hillary also was an election denier after she lost, trump was certainly more brazen about it but this is not a new phenomenon unique to trump. As far as 2A is concerned, no you can’t prove that, so if you want to change 2A put it to a vote. I don’t think it will change for a long time but I’m not upset about a vote. Not to mention that court packing is not even remotely unique to trump, or any democrat, or republican who has been in power in recent history. You’re probably right about the bribes, it also likely true of many more people who have been in his position in recent history. Again, his real crime it seems is being more brazen about the quid pro quo’s than his predecessors.

The tax cuts is not something I necessarily agree with him on. It’s not a deal breaker for me though. I’m in favor of a flat tax personally.

Man, even the Washington post describes his as riding a populist wave. They hate him. I didn’t just make that up. He also did get a lot of votes I think on the basis that he was willing to say what he was thinking and not filter everything for political speech. He won over a large portion of the working class vote and is making more and more territory with the black vote and a couple other demographics as well.

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Project 2025 is not about replacing the civil service with "elected people," it's about replacing them with political patronage hacks and returning the country to the spoils system. That's an almost indescribably bad idea that can only be propounded by someone who is either ignorant of this country's pre-1880s history or actively desires to return it there.

"HIllary was an election denier" is so absurdly idiotic that I don't even know where to start. She didn't even attempt to use legal process to overturn her loss (which I would be fine with as long as the challenges weren't frivolous, like Trump's were-- legal process is there for a reason), much less foment a coup d'etat.

Re: the Second Amendment, I would simply appoint judges who aren't far-right loons.

No one in "recent history" has openly operated businesses to solicit bribes from interested individuals. Indeed, none of them has operated businesses at all; they've all had the good sense to divest those businesses before taking office.

And the observation that you "are in favor of a flat tax personally" puts you on something like the rightmost 10% of all Americans when it comes to tax policy-- that would be a massive, massive shift in favor of the wealthy at the expense of the middle class-- so it's unsurprising to say the least that someone with plutocratic economic views appeals to you.

In short, what we have here in this comment section is a classic ploy-- the extreme right-winger cosplaying as a quote-"moderate"-unquote to spread lies designed to influence people to view his extremist candidate as socially acceptable. Unfortunately, I happen to actually know a thing or two, and so it's not going to work.

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Nov 25, 2023·edited Nov 25, 2023

Let me first state to Jesse and Katie, I am not angry, I'm just disappointed. I understand why this happens, but I wanted to offer some respectful criticism for one minor thing on the show: for people who are so horny for nuance, you sure are quick to go with whatever the dumbest/most MSNBC thing to believe about Christians that is available: i.e. we support Jews because we are trying to hasten the return of Christ. Of course there are many who believe that, but you didn't offer the throat clearing for me that you do virtually every time a lefty org comes up, which you literally did later this same ep. "i'M sUrE tHiS iS jUsT a SmaLL sUbSeT oF ThIs GrOup"

My bona fides on this topic? I am the son of a pastor from Western Washington so my options were to either search out ACTUAL answers for the things I believe, or abandon it and become an atheist. I am happy to go toe to toe with anyone on scripture for exactly this reason. As with anything in life, if you are surrounded by a bunch of people who agree with you and don't challenge you, you stay stupid.

I'll explain why smart Christians support Jews and Israel since you already know why dumb ones do

1) Genesis 12:3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.”

- Not only is this a prophecy of Jesus in the first book of the Bible, but it's also a promise from GOD that He will bless those who bless the Jews and curse those who curse them. For most of use who believe the bible, that's the beginning and end of the matter. God keeps His promises. Every time I see or hear about antisemitism from my ranks, I cringe and don't savor the coals they heap on their own heads.

2) Three short chapters after that in Genesis, God puts Abraham to sleep and makes a covenant with him “To your descendants I give this land, from the Wadie of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates, the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.”

- God made everything, it's His to give and to those who don't like it, tough tits, once you can overpower God, you can give YOUR creation to Hamas. Israel is called the promised land for a reason. No johnny come lately "religion of peace" gets to undo that anymore than the skinheads who declare "Jews will not replace us"

3) The reason I think those Christians are dumb who want to blow up the dome of the rock is the same reason I think people who predict the day Jesus is coming back are dumb or grifters: the bible EXPLICITLY states that no man knows the day or the hour, EVEN THE ANGELS AND JESUS. So you're telling me Clyde Johnson in Littlerock has the bead on something Jesus doesn't? kindly shut up. The Dome of the Rock will one day be thankfully destroyed and the Temple rebuilt where it should be. but God is going to handle that. We don't have to race to try and fulfil prophecy, God will handle it. It is profound arrogance and pride on the part of Christians to believe we must be the ones to do it. The bible doesn't give us that instruction. it orders us to pray for the PEACE of Jerusalem, not war (Psalm 122)

Those are the two, I believe, sound biblical arguments for supporting Israel and Jews more broadly. That being said, to throw in a bonus, the bible is also clear that Gentiles are grafted onto the tree of life along side the Jews, in no way is that implied to mean we replace the Jews. They are still God's chosen people and He has plenty of promises that ONLY apply to them. We Gentiles simply get to share in redemption. By the way, when I say Gentiles, I simply mean non-Jews.

As for the non- religious reasons for supporting Israel. They are legion.

1) Self Defense. As you two have stated I think, we on the right are downright HORNY for the rights of self defense. I myself am what is classified in the US as a "super owner". Do hanker for the chance to use my guns? Absolutely not. Would I use them with prejudice and without compassion were me or my family threatened? No question. I don't know why globally, it seems like self defense is a principle that largely only "the right" seems to not only believe, but vocally support. Even when the subject comes up on your show, there is typically some throat clearing or "but" thrown in to try and lower the level of moral superiority that those defending themselves have in that situation. I am pretty black and white that if someone is attacked, they have carte blanche within whatever applicable laws there are to erase the other person from existence.

2) The right is much more clear about who our friends and enemies are. The left claims it wants to try and love the hate out of every dictator and horrible regime on the planet. But the opinion from the right is that the left wants to take morally and economically bankrupt ideologies and try to wash the blood and gore off them to redeem them, such as Marxism, not understanding that those ideologies are the wellspring of most of the atrocities we see occurring. If that means tearing down posters of missing babies so you don't have to confront just how evil the allies you have chosen are? Better tear them down.

3) Israel itself is also the only outpost for actual liberty in the region. They are surrounded on all sides by hot, shitty countries who spend their money on rockets instead of infrastructure which would give them AC and make them less pissy by default. it's EASY for me to ally with Israel. Likewise, it's ALSO easy for me to default to antagonism with most of the surrounding countries for the same reason I loathe China and Russia: the people have little self determination in their lives when compared to people who live in more democratic societies.

4) There is the added reason that Jews have also been much more friendly to the US than Muslims. If I am forced to pick a side, and Muslims seem all to willing to impose that decision me, what with their open and joyful striving for real genocide, I'm going to pick the side that DOESN'T take 9 month old hostages. No Jews are taking hostage 9 month of Muslims in the name of Israel. The left and the world more broadly seem to celebrate that as "freedom fighting."

I have no patience for bad actors. I am on the right, after all, and believe that being the world police is the unasked for responsibility that comes with being THE global superpower. We either intervene and attempt to increase individual liberty, or we allow China to continue enslaving countries through their belt and road initiative, or allow organizations like Hamas to "govern" their citizens and literally call them "a nation of martyrs". what kind of a ghoul supports an alleged government who says stuff like that? I see way more of them in the democratic party than i do in the gop, and I think we're more hardcore about calling out the REAL antisemites and not just the skinhead larpers. I think they are equally as repugnant, but one is CLEARLY a bigger threat to peace than the other.

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Thank you for taking the time to share this. Really informative.

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Thank you so much for this thoughtful, comprehensive post.

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What a thoughtful response. Thank you for writing that all out!

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

1 - Genesis 12:3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.

Ok as a non religious person I'm confused. So God said he would punish the children and descendants of people who treated Jews with contempt? So therefore it's OK for Israel to murder Palestinian babies for the crimes of their parents? Isn't God a "Just" creature? How is it just for a baby to be punished for the crimes of its parents?

2 - "Three short chapters after that in Genesis, God puts Abraham to sleep and makes a covenant with him “To your descendants I give this land, from the Wadie of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates, the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.”

Why would God give land to the Jews that had other people living on it? Was his plan for the Jews to murder them and take it? Couldn't God just move those people with a thought instead of the Israelis having to slaughter them all? Couldn't God have made them live together in harmony with the Jews? Why did God want those cultures to all be genocided by the Jews?

Also...non-religious aside: Did it ever occur to you that this book was simply written by Jews and so naturally they wrote that God gave them the land which they took by violence? History is written by the victors and stuff like that? Why do you swallow the words of a 2000 year old book instead of thinking about it logically?

3 - "We don't have to race to try and fulfil prophecy, God will handle it. It is profound arrogance and pride on the part of Christians to believe we must be the ones to do it. The bible doesn't give us that instruction. it orders us to pray for the PEACE of Jerusalem, not war (Psalm 122)"

So you support Israel not because you like Jews but because you believe God told you to and because someday YOUR version of God will destroy the most famous Jewish TEmple and then YOUR PEOPLE will get to return, rebuild YOUR most famous temple, and the YOUR VERSION OF GOD's Messaih will return and violently convert all the Jews to Christianity?

Are you familiar with Kholbergs stages of Moral Development? There are six stages. You are using stages 1 and 2 here which is the equivalent moral development of an 2-7 year old. Of course most adult humans don't pass beyond that stage so you're not unique. In fact it makes sense because you believe you are a "Child of God" and so therefore you use a child's reasoning for supporting Israel. 'MY daddy told me I had to or else I'd be punished"

(PS Kholberg was Jewish)

https://www.simplypsychology.org/kohlberg.html

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Nov 27, 2023·edited Nov 27, 2023

1) Ok as a non religious person I'm confused. So God said he would punish the children and descendants of people who treated Jews with contempt? So therefore it's OK for Israel to murder Palestinian babies for the crimes of their parents? Isn't God a "Just" creature? How is it just for a baby to be punished for the crimes of its parents?

You're making quite a leap there, I'll assume it's in good faith, but obviously not. no where does that verse even imply what you're suggesting. The promise is to "bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you". My initial point was that I was not interested in testing the latter of the two things there.

edit: re-reading this after having gone through the rest of your stuff, I think this is a good example of attempting empathy. You seemingly have none, or are disinterested in expressing it in this exchange. You would find exchanges like this more profitable if you were able to place yourself in the other person's shoes in order to understand what they are saying. You are resorting to a bunch of really boring straw man attacks.

2) Why would God give land to the Jews that had other people living on it? Was his plan for the Jews to murder them and take it? Couldn't God just move those people with a thought instead of the Israelis having to slaughter them all? Couldn't God have made them live together in harmony with the Jews? Why did God want those cultures to all be genocided by the Jews?

You're asking questions here that God knows the answers to, but I will take a swing but I want to be clear that I am not speaking for God here. The first thing I would say is that we're not talking about gentle peace loving people here. You take a look into what was involved in Ba'al worship and get back to me. Some cultures SHOULD die, like the Aztecs and the Incas. But to your question, God can do anything He wants, He chooses to give us free will. But that doesn't mean all paths are equally as profitable. Worshiping false gods is the wrong choice. The short answer to your question is that no, God would not force them to live in harmony. He would uphold his word though, so had those tribes not already been at a defacto state of war with the tribes of Israel (as all tribes were at that point), and instead had blessed Israel, I assume they would not have been targeted.

3) Also...non-religious aside: Did it ever occur to you that this book was simply written by Jews and so naturally they wrote that God gave them the land which they took by violence? History is written by the victors and stuff like that? Why do you swallow the words of a 2000 year old book instead of thinking about it logically?

Yes, growing up in one of the most viciously atheist states in the union, it never occurred to me. I think it's a bit of a leap after everything I wrote to imply I cannot think logically. That just feels kinda like a "I hate religion, dumbass" cheap shot. but you do you I guess. To give you a serious answer, the bible does not paint Jews in a good light. And that's kinda the point. The bible, in whole, is about God's plan to redeem the world from original sin. He demonstrates that plan through His chosen people who are extremely flawed, which showcases that we can ALL have the redemption offered.

3 - "We don't have to race to try and fulfil prophecy, God will handle it. It is profound arrogance and pride on the part of Christians to believe we must be the ones to do it. The bible doesn't give us that instruction. it orders us to pray for the PEACE of Jerusalem, not war (Psalm 122)"

So you support Israel not because you like Jews but because you believe God told you to and because someday YOUR version of God will destroy the most famous Jewish TEmple and then YOUR PEOPLE will get to return, rebuild YOUR most famous temple, and the YOUR VERSION OF GOD's Messaih will return and violently convert all the Jews to Christianity?

wtf are you talking about? you really are not asking any of this in good faith. you go to the most insulting and dumbest interpretation of what I said. Maybe try reading what I wrote without picturing me as a mustache twisting villain. Holy shit. I support Israel for all the reasons I said. And if you read what I wrote, I am pretty clear that my stance on things that are prophecied in the future is to not worry about it. But you're also wrong, by my understanding of the faith, I'll already have been raptured when the JEWISH temple is rebuilt (even in Revelation, we're talking about the Jews rebuilding THEIR temple, so I guess I will chalk this one up to ignorance on a faith you are not a part of. I thought I was explicit that Christians don't in any way supplant Jews, but you seemingly missed that). but i also love this weird "violently convert all the jews to christianity" thing. I think I understand the problem here, since you don't believe in God, you seemingly can't even put yourself in the mental framework of what a person in my position would think or feel. You seem to be under the impression that God needs the help of Christians to accomplish anything. This could not be more false, and that's my point. What is in the bible WILL happen, regardless of my actions. you may not like the outcome... but... oh well? I don't make the rules.

Are you familiar with Kholbergs stages of Moral Development? There are six stages. You are using stages 1 and 2 here which is the equivalent moral development of an 2-7 year old. Of course most adult humans don't pass beyond that stage so you're not unique. In fact it makes sense because you believe you are a "Child of God" and so therefore you use a child's reasoning for supporting Israel. 'MY daddy told me I had to or else I'd be punished"

Yes, having gone to grad school for psychology, I am unfamiliar with this and are incredibly stupid. You seem to be responding to someone else's or you just love the shit out of straw manning. I saw that there was a beefy response earlier, but didn't have time to dig in and read and respond until now. I have to say, I am really bummed. I was hoping for more from a BARPod listener. You accuse me of being juvenile, but as I stated in my original post, because of where I grew up, I have heard basically everything and you are like spouting level 1 miniboss shit here. Community college philosophy 101 class stuff. I was kinda hoping I'd get more substantive questions instead of REALLY clever word traps ("when did you last stop beating your wife" sort of shit). You had a chance here to ask smart questions instead of being the caricature of the smarmy asshole atheist, but that seemingly was too difficult for you. What a shame. I'm sorry I was unable to give you the answers you were looking for.

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I for one am shocked that the woman that makes a lucrative living off of saying whatever she wants about white people would also decide that she could also say whatever she wants about Jews.

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Hi Jesse,

I would like to critique your reference to Zionist with evangelical leanings. As a fellow pervert for nuance, I believe boiling all evangelical reasons for Zionism to eschatological underpinnings is misleading. I think the majority of Evangelicals who could be called Zionists could be more accurately described as believing that the Old Testament blessings of God still apply to Israel and Jews today. I won't accuse you of Christophobia, but this sort of treatment of Islam would definitely be seen that way. This editorial at The Dispatch has a lot more history and explanation: https://thedispatch.com/article/pray-for-the-peace-of-jerusalem/

As one commenter in the above piece notes, your description is more of the caricature of the evangelical than the actual evangelical position on Israel.

Your Hispanic cousin,

Mocha

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Don’t let Google fool you they give preference to certain websites by tagging them as credible source. They’ve been doing this since 2015 or so. For example, Dr. Martin Luther King there is many racist websites but those are demoted or not indexed. How do you think kiwi Farms doesn’t appear at all in Google?

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Yeah Jessie seemed super super naive during that part, I think he has some insider contacts there he doesn't want to piss off, plus he is just generally a naive person when it comes to friend's intentions. Almost always believing the best.

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Yes, like the way he defends the lachrymose serial fabulist Taylor Lorenz. He also has a sentimental attachment to Jonathan Chait for his past work, even though at this point Chait is largely a defender of Official Truths. Like a lot of good, decent, and honest people, Jesse often has a blind spot for those who don't see any problem with bending the truth to suit an agenda.

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For a reporter who’s generally good at approaching things from a skeptical perspective, Jesse can be weirdly gullible

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Nov 27, 2023·edited Nov 27, 2023

I have friends who work at Google, and they are unfortunately the wokest of the woke.

Jesse does seem to think that Google, an enormous company, has some kind of guiding intelligence. When in reality these things down in the weeds are implemented by ultra online progressives.

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Indeed. Google can easily press a button and make this site irrelevant. I get that Jesse didn't want to put words in their mouth though and just relayed his reporting.

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Zionism is a poorly used and much abused term. Zionism is the movement for/belief in self determination for the Jewish People. Originally, Zionists were more agnostic about the location. Palestine of course has deep connections to Jewish history, had a growing population of Jews from Europe settling in the late 19th/early 20th century, and in 1917, the British “Balfour Declaration” established the idea of Palestine as a Jewish homeland to be British policy. In the aftermath of the First World War, the former Ottoman territory become a British territory under a League of Nations mandate. National self-determination is the underpinning for most sovereign states, and a traditional liberal value. Pre-1948, one could, and many did, have questions about the recognition of the Jewish state, and it’s location.

Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism, came to the conclusion that Jews had no future in Europe during the Dreyfus Affair. Albert Dreyfus was a French officer of Jewish descent who was railroaded for treason in the closing days of the 19th century. A series of trials and terrible imprisonment followed. He would untimely be exonerated in the 1910s and serve France in the First World War.The actual traitor got off with a slap on the wrist and died in the UK. Herzl saw this happening in France - which he had previously seen as the best place for Jews in Europe- and concluded Jews had no future in Europe.

The language of “anti-Zionism” was an interesting success of Soviet Propaganda. While the Soviets originally saw Israel as a potential ally, especially as many of its founders grew up in and around secular, left wing socialist/communist movements in Eastern Europe. When it was clear that Israeli was becoming an American Ally, the Soviets increasingly aligned with anti-Israel groups, such as the PLO, which were secular and Marxist-Leninist. Islamism as an ideology didn’t become a political force until the 70s. The collapse of the USSR led many groups to jettison a lot of the Marxism and seek other backers.

I had a professor who was Israeli; hardly a Likud support. His point was that if you reject national self determination as the basis for a state, like because you are an anarchist, it’s not anti-Semitic to oppose Zionism. But if you oppose national self determination only for the Jews, how is that not anti-Semitic?

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Nobody opposes the right of Jews to national self determination. The problem is that the Jews decided they wanted their country to be in a land where people already lived. Those people naturally didn't want to leave their homes and country to make room for the Jews...so the Zionists committed terrible acts of violence and murder on the people living there already in order to force them to leave. 70% of the current occupants of Gaza are the decendants of these people who were victims of pogroms by the zionists.

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Your first sentence is a total lie, there was a remains countless people who wish to deny Jews self determination.

The rest of it just silly, every single country in the Americans, Australia, NZ and I’m sure many other countries were built ‘where people already lived’. People may try to address those historic injustices, but there aren’t global campaigns to delegitimise the entire state.

Also, unlike huge numbers of countries around the world Jews have always lived in historic Palestine.

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There’s a bit of a difference between building a country where people already live hundreds of years ago and doing it in the 1940s. The founding of Israel happened in living memory, during a time period where colonialism was starting to be seen as unjustifiable. If the US had been founded less than 80 years ago, I’m pretty sure there would be global campaigns to delegitimise that state too. And if Israel had been founded in the 18th century, support for palestinians would probably take the form of land acknowledgements and casino permits on the Gaza reservation.

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There’s obviously something about the 1940s that make a description of this as simply ‘colonialism’ absurd here, also what actually is the argument?

That a state that’s existed for 75years and built a democratic society should cease to exist and all its citizens go where exactly?

Your expectation that people’s attitude to the US would be the same is incredibly naive, it goes to why the idea of a single state is laughable and why Israel exists

Also, what is to be gained by re-litigating the rights and wrongs of its formation. It’s obvious it’s not going to cease to exist, so instead of reconciling its self to that reality and trying to build institutions and functioning society, the fact Palestinians have ended up with a basket case of corrupt and violent governance is as much a product of a delusional desire to delegitimise Israel and any actions of Israel itself.

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When soi-disant "democracies" decide to conquer their neighbors and turn them into serfs without rights, people have a tendency to get bent out of shape about it. Particularly the neighbors in question.

I've already had to break out Tacitus on this thread, but this goes back even an additional 500 years, to literally the first real history ever written (Thucydides), wherein he describes the attitude in question as "the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must". 2500 years later and we've learned absolutely nothing.

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Cool story, nice rhetoric but even remotely historically accurate or vaguely useful in trying to address the situation.

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I’m not arguing that Israel should stop existing. As you say yourself, it’s been there for 75 years and regardless of what people might think of the legitimacy of its founding, it’s not going anywhere as long as the US supports it. All I’m saying is that you can’t discount the fact that Israel is a colonial nation founded in a completely different time period from the other colonial nations, and that DOES make a difference to how outsiders view it. Both because it is literally living memory - there are still palestinians alive today who wish to go back to homes they were personally displaced from - and, again, because our standards for what is acceptable were different in the 20th century than they were in the 17th. Slavery was normalized in the 17th century, but considered an atrocity in the 20th. Nothing that happened during the Rape of Nanking would be shocking if it had happened during the Mongol Conquest, what makes it shocking is that it happened during the 1940s. And in the same vein, a lot of people who have no particular skin in the game simply find the act of conquering land and displacing people to be indefensible conduct in the 20th century, regardless of what one might otherwise think of the parties involved, their desire for safety, and how functioning their societies are.

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You can’t discount a lot things, like the fact that Arab nations spent decades trying to destroy Israel, like the prevalence of antisemitism in the Arab world, like the rejectionist attitude of many Palestinian leaders, like the fact that Palestinians & the wider Arab world have agency have demonstrably failed to build institutions that would serve the well being of the Palestinian people AND ensure the security of Israeli Jews, like the fact that billions have been poured into Gaza and much of it has been siphoned off by Hamas to continue to seek the destruction of Israel and the imposition of an Islamic state.

Simply focusing on what may be injustices resulting from the formation of the state of Israel & projecting the idea of just being ‘colonialism’ is largely a kind of moral cos play be the Western left, that fails to engage with ALL the issues with due seriousness.

Of course the settlements and policies of Israel are part of that, but it’s largely become a form of team sports for the Western left & does nothing to actually resolve anything or help the Palestinians in a world that actually exists.

What is the point of saying that Israel’s existence only rests on American support?

What does that mean, that without it Israeli Jews should be expelled or that we’re supposed to indulge the ludicrous fantasy of one state?

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Billions of Christians are about to celebrate the birth of Jewish man in Bethlehem 2000+ years ago... and yet you use this whole "BuT No JeWs uNtiL the 1940s" argument with a straight face.

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Nov 26, 2023·edited Nov 26, 2023

Yes in the past Humans behaved very badly.

That is not an excuse for humans to behave badly today in 2023.

The Palestinians have also lived in that area for millennia. Why are they not entitled to live in Israel? The answer is that the Israelis won't allow them to. Israel was specifically created as a religious ethnostate and Palestinians were never going to be allowed from its very inception. Their religion tells them they are ENTITLED to this land and therefore no atrocity is off limits. They literally believe they have permission from God.

That's exactly the kind of backwards, dogmatic, mystical bullshit that Humanity is trying to outgrow with the establishment of international law. Something Israel routinely violates.

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“Why are they not entitled to live in Israel? The answer is that the Israelis won't allow them to.”

That will be news to 21% almost 2million people of Arab ethnicity who are Israeli citizens, who funnily enough enjoy more civil and political rights than any other Arabs in the region even accounting for whatever discrimination they do face.

Yes, some Jews do hold those views towards religion about the whole of Palestine but it is not a historically the grounding of mainstream Zionism.

There are Palestinians that think their religion requires them to try and kill Jews...

You’re constantly saying things that are simply untrue, no one is taking you seriously.

It might be easier to have sympathy with this line of argument if there was a single Arab state that had built up a comparable democratic society, if Palestinians had attempted to build up democratic institutions, if other Arabs states had worked to help Palestinians build robust democratic institutions, but no, much of the effort went into trying to destroy Israel.

Even now, billions are poored into Gaza, but much of it just gets siphoned off by Hamas.

I presume however you think that should the occupation end, Palestine will turn in Norway or that if it doesn’t, that will still be the fault of Israel.

https://newrepublic.com/article/176962/hamas-finances-funding-sources-palestinian-authority?utm_source=pocket_reader

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`That will be news to 21% almost 2million people of Arab ethnicity who are Israeli citizens, who funnily enough enjoy more civil and political rights than any other Arabs in the region even accounting for whatever discrimination they do face.'

Yet those Arabs still do face discrimination and are not afforded the same rights at Jews. Saying that Israel is a bit better than Kuwait or Saudi Arabia with respect to how it protects its minorities isn't really a high bar.

If Israel wants to be treated like a member of the West then they need laws and behavior that reflects Western principles. The amount of discrimination tolerated by Arabs within Israel would be unacceptable in most Western countries.

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And yet they can be elected to the Knesset, and have been since 1949.

Such. Discrimination.

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Nov 25, 2023Liked by Jesse Singal

Re pronouns: just because I refer to my neighbor as my Catholic neighbor doesn't imply that I agree that the Pope is the head of the Christian church. Which is to say, I don't need to refer to him as a Roman catholic or a papist or whatever.

Using people's preferred identifiers in a pluralistic society isn't a denial of reality, it's just civility, imo.

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I think it would be more like your Jewish neighbor insisting that you refer to him as Catholic.

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... after he's converted to Catholicism.

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Caling your Catholic neighbor Catholic is accurate, though.

Since pronouns in English are still sex-based (despite the efforts of a tiny number of people to change that), calling your male neighbor “she” is inaccurate.

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"Caling your Catholic neighbor Catholic is accurate, though."

Not if you're not catholic. That's the point.

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deletedNov 28, 2023·edited Nov 28, 2023
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Except that wishing someone a Merry Christmas or not serving your Muslim friend pork isn't the same as using wrong-sex pronouns, which has resulted in policies that are resulting in violence against women (see: men who ID as women being put into women's prisons, at the federal level, and in blue state prisons.... women are being raped as a result of these policy decisions). Using wrong-sex pronouns signals support for these types of changes to society that many of us are not okay with. (Also: girls being expected to change in front of boys who say they're girls).

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But it doesn't need to. I can and do very easily respect someone's preferred pronouns while opposing the bad things you mention.

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I'm so happy for you.

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This is a silly and unhelpful analogy. You are calling your neighbor Catholic because he is literally a Catholic and referring to him as one is accurate. You are calling him that in order to indicate that he believes certain things, and no person on earth would ever interpret that as a meaning that YOU believe those things.

Whereas calling a man “she” is participating in a lie and saying something that is literally not true.

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You are beyond wrong. We do this all the time. My parent's generation had to say homosexual instead of gay because saying gay would have implied affirmation to them.

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