Why do people fall into anti-Semitism? It happens on the fringe end of both the Right and the Left. It almost seems as though people need to think that a vast conspiracy operates against them, personally and individually, in order to explain their own shortcomings — and the Jews make a great scapegoat. This sign of a weak mind showed up in the blogosphere, and on Christmas Eve of all days, as My Left Wing blames the Jews:
Several months ago, at the suggestion of MSOC, I returned to this site, resolved that I would never again descend to the moral cesspit occupied by the haters. I would willingly engage in civil and rational discourse with anyone of good will, but if they refused, I would ignore them.
Unfortunately, the same persons whose emnity and hostility were so pervasive before immediately resumed their campaign to discredit me, not only rejecting my overtures of peace, but mocking them.
These hateful persons are Jews. At one point, I would have disregarded this fact, but I no longer can. This site has been nothing but the battleground of the Jew Wars, and it is not possible to escape the toxic fallout.
Some persons here have posted remarks offensive to Jews, remarks that no one would have regarded seriously if not for the Jews, as they stridently identify themselves, calling for banning and lynch mobs and denunciation of the posters whose words have offended them. They have made it very clear that they are willing to destroy this site, to make it a barren no-man’s-land where no civil discourse can survive, unless the persons they charge with antisemitism are silenced and driven out.
I know that these Jews will continue to conduct their hate campaigns with impunity as well as self-righteousness, because the people in charge of this site regard them as friends, but they are false, treacherous friends, willing to destroy the site that has befriended them.
And these same persons, these Jews, have not only continued their malicious attacks on me, but others, also Jews, have joined their Hate Squad, solely on the grounds that they are Jews and have been offended by someone, and thus arrogate to themselves the right to hate and insult a person who has done them no harm and no offense.
And the consequence is this: I now find myself, for the first time in my life, hating Jews. I find myself hating the Jews on this site, both the Jews who have conducted their malicious campaign against me for so long and the Jews who have stood by in silent solidarity with them, never saying a word against their vile attacks, their cruelty and ugliness.
I find myself thinking that Proximity perhaps has the right idea, that Jews regard other human beings as objects, to be sacrificed to the interests of Jews. That Jews will always stand with other Jews no matter their guilt, and against non-Jews, no matter their innocence. The face of Jews has become unspeakably ugly in my sight, because of the ugliness of the Jewish haters here.
MLW is run by Maryscott O’Connor, who became the subject of a Washington Post feature in April 2006. The Post noted the lifestyle of “MSOC” at the time:
In the angry life of Maryscott O’Connor, the rage begins as soon as she opens her eyes and realizes that her president is still George W. Bush. The sun has yet to rise and her family is asleep, but no matter; as soon as the realization kicks in, O’Connor, 37, is out of bed and heading toward her computer.
Out there, awaiting her building fury: the Angry Left, where O’Connor’s reputation is as one of the angriest of all. “One long, sustained scream” is how she describes the writing she does for various Web logs, as she wonders what she should scream about this day.
She smokes a cigarette. Should it be about Bush, whom she considers “malevolent,” a “sociopath” and “the Antichrist”? She smokes another cigarette. Should it be about Vice President Cheney, whom she thinks of as “Satan,” or about Karl Rove, “the devil”? Should it be about the “evil” Republican Party, or the “weaselly, capitulating, self-aggrandizing, self-serving” Democrats, or the Catholic Church, for which she says “I have a special place in my heart . . . a burning, sizzling, putrescent place where the guilty suffer the tortures of the damned”?
Should it surprise anyone that a blog run by a woman who immerses herself in hate from the moment she awakens would one day have a post like that seen on Christmas Eve? Hatred begets hatred; it makes people irrational, and that irrationality can’t be compartmentalized. Once someone believes they have launched a Holy War against an object of hatred, it doesn’t take long to conclude that all who oppose you are evil and are conspiring for your defeat.
And as we have seen with radical Muslims, it doesn’t take long to blame the Jews when the Holy War gets thwarted. The Nazis did the same thing. Germany got defeated in the Great War? But Germany is invincible! It must have been a stab in the back — and that means someone conspired for the defeat. The Jews!
It’s as inevitable as it is pathetic. Unfortunately, one cannot remain silent in the face of such irrational bigotry, even though attention can make the individual case of insanity worse in the short run. Joe Gandelman has a great roundup of reactions from both Right and Left.