4:00 pm in Uncategorized by BigFurHat
There is an odd term being thrown about – Holocaust Obsessed. It’s used by leftists to try and paint anyone concerned with a second holocaust, which is a very real possibility in today’s political climate, as “crazy.”
Try and get away with the term “slavery obsessed.”
It’s the new fashionable meme for those who don’t want to be overly troubled by the memory of the death camps and looming threats of a second holocaust. The term enables those who use it to suggest that those more concerned than they are “obsessed” in an unseemly way.
It’s the word “obsessed” that seems problematic to me. It implies a bright line between legitimate interest and something else, something over-intense, feverish, and counterproductive. But where is that line? How much time should we spend worrying about the threat of future Holocausts and genocides, not just those involving Jews.
The much-lauded German novelist W.G. Sebald has been quoted saying “no serious person thinks of anything else.” This was obviously a form of hyperbole designed to jolt people out of complacency. But it raises the question: How much does a serious person think about the Holocaust? What does it mean to be “obsessed” and what does it mean to give the Holocaust an appropriate place in our political and cultural consciousness?
I admit I was stunned in exploring this question to find no less than 272,000 Google hits for “obsessed with the Holocaust.” And it’s not just racist sites (including David Duke’s) or anti-Zionist sites like Mondoweiss.
Increasingly the word “obsessed”—as “obsessed with the holocaust” or “holocaust obsessed”—has entered contemporary discourse, often used by Jews as an epithet to describe other Jews. It may have entered the mainstream as far back as the publication of Peter Novick’s 1999 book The Holocaust in American Life, in which he accuses American Jews as a whole of exploiting the Holocaust in bad faith, either as a “victimization Olympics” or for political (primarily pro-Israel) purposes.
The term “holocaust-obsessed” appeared in The New Yorker in an article about Israeli politician Avraham Burg who, according to David Remnick, “describes the country in its current state as Holocaust obsessed. …” Too much attention to the extermination of 6 million Jews oh so long ago, just because 6 million or so more are being threatened with exterminationist rhetoric today.