"I'd love to reblog that post about Hedy Epstein but I know that some of my followers will reblog it, despite never having reblogged any of my posts about anti-semitism. I don't want to give them a Good Jew to tokenize. :("
Asked by Anonymous
Yeah. Speaking as a grandchild of Survivors, Gentiles tokenizing Jewish Survivors really infuriates me. Obviously on one level, I take a lot of pride in Jewish activists against anti-Blackness. Hedy Epstein clearly knows that, as a survivor, her voice carries extra weight with a lot of people. She did what she did with the expressed purpose of drawing attention to the cause and I believe she would want you to reblog that post.
At the same time, I share your frustration at tumblr’s general silence on issues of anti-semitism. There are a lot of bloggers who show a perfect willingness to claim Survivors of genocidal anti-semitism to prove just how much they love the Jews when it’s most convenient, almost as a self-defensive measure against future criticism of being anti-semitic. There’s this weird tap-dance goyim seem to go through to make themselves feel free to do and say anti-semitic things while not believing themselves to be anti-semitic.
I wish I had an answer for you. It comes down to your feelings about who your followers are and where their priorities lie. On my personal blog, I’ve spent a lot of time deliberately making posts that were intended to chase off anti-semites in the hopes that who I had left were at least accepting of my Jewish posts. That said, there are people whose silence on the issue of anti-semitism stings greatly, people I’ve known for a decade or longer before I got on tumblr. On the other hand, there are people who I’ve seen have a significant increase in solidarity, even to the point of following this blog.
At the end of the day, the choice is yours. The only thing I suppose I can say is that I understand your hesitance and I’ll support whichever choice you make.
I think - and I’m guilty of this and it’s really not a good thing - there’s a perception in that the US that anti-Semitism is more a European and Middle East problem. I’ll try to keep the above post in mind from now on.
There’s also an element of - ok, when I pay close attention to local news, I get more hyperaware of crime, especially sexual assault. It causes me to be more afraid, even though my risk of assault hasn’t actually gone up. And I’ve been *really* lucky, in that my own experience with sexual assault is a single incident of being groped on subway. Basically, my being more aware of specific crimes does nothing positive for me, or anyone else.
So, sometimes, with hate crimes, I’m unsure about reblogging because I’m not sure if meaningfully expressing concern outweighs possibly making people feel more afraid.