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Susan Estrich
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Blood Libel


Alan Dershowitz isn't offended. He says it's OK for Sarah Palin to invoke one of the most anti-Semitic images of our time in attacking those who have been critical of her putting crosshairs over the name of the congresswoman who was later shot.

"There is nothing improper and certainly nothing anti-Semitic in Sarah Palin using the term to characterize what she reasonably believes are false accusations that her words or images may have caused a mentally disturbed individual to kill and maim. The fact that two of the victims are Jewish is utterly irrelevant to the propriety of using this widely used term," he reportedly told

I disagree.

The best thing that can be said for Palin is that she probably didn't even know that "blood libel" refers to the longstanding accusation that Jews killed Christian babies to use their blood to make Passover matzohs. Generations of murdered Jews attest to the power of this true libel. There is simply no comparison between this terrible term and Palin's complaint that talking heads are blaming her for contributing to an environment of hate. So quick was Palin to get herself into the very fray she purports to condemn, that she didn't check what she said.

And for this, she will hit the jackpot.

Her appearance next week on Sean Hannity's show is already being promoted and is sure to be a ratings winner. Condemn the state of the public discourse all you want: My money is on her outing on Fox News (for whom she and I are both contributors) beating everything in its time slot combined.

I don't blame Palin for the tragic shooting in Tucson.

The man who pulled the trigger is to blame. Culpability is individual.

I do blame her for not acting like a leader in the days since. Not knowing what "blood libel" means is bad enough. But it's far worse not knowing that in times of national crisis you don't respond to the cranks; you rise above them and bring the country together, as the president later did.

And I blame those who let her get away with it.

Palin keeps asking to be taken seriously as a future president, even if only to maintain the bright lights and big fees. But she behaves like every other striving talk-show host, eager to get in the good jab, the good line, the zinger — even if the end result of an endless cycle of such zingers is a level of political discourse that is disgraceful if not also dangerous.

If this is, in retrospect, just another chapter in building the career of Sarah Palin, television talker, international toastmaster, seven-figure speaker for hire, there is no doubt that it will be counted as a success. Her comments have come to play a central role in the story: The liberal media have once again vilified her. She has once again stood up for herself, refusing to let them get away with it, holding her ground and hitting the ratings jackpot.

For some purposes, this is a very good story. Running for president is not one of them.

To find out more about Susan Estrich and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at



8 Comments | Post Comment
SPARE US the sideshow concerns re our latest Tavistock Institute scripted 'novelty candidate' Sarah Palin.
----It's the RED Chia/globalist crash and eugenics thing! for those non-hypnotized among us.
Comment: #1
Posted by: FREE tea
Fri Jan 14, 2011 5:25 AM
I think she was using the phrase as an example to what was going on at the time with her . there are things used on the right and the left that meant bad things but are used to state a point , such as Nazi ,Jim Crow and linch their are thousands of words you have used and other people have used. And I am sure you and Sara Palin both don't mnean them to harm but as a way to express your thoughts.
Comment: #2
Posted by: Leonard Robinson
Fri Jan 14, 2011 6:43 AM
Suzie have you heard tinkle leg, bill and some other liberal nuts talking lately. You are totally around the bend, occasionaly you almost make sense but basically you are just another left wing-nut.
Comment: #3
Posted by: Paul
Fri Jan 14, 2011 6:57 AM
Has everyone noticed how the liberals, including Susan, are obsessed with Sarah Palin? I do believe she represents a threat to their ideology and they actually fear her. That's why they hang on every word she says. I personally believe she is and was more qualified for the Presidentcy than our current occupant but she won't run because she is much more valuable ratling the liberal cages, regardless of who's in office.
Comment: #4
Posted by: Early
Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:08 AM
Comment: #5
Posted by: J.C.
Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:17 AM
I agree with Dershowitz. The comment is entirely apropos. Your comment of proportionality here is irrelevant. Why? Because Sarah Palin was the person "blood libeled". Therefore there can only be one victim of such a libel. When Jews as a whole are "blood libeled" there can be more victims. In addition, you are confusing two separate things here. One is the blood libel; the other is the actual murder based on it. In terms of similarities, the libel for both Sarah Palin and the Jews is very similar. The fact that Sarah Palin has not been murdered (yet) as a result of such a libel is not relevant to the initial blood libel argument. I hope this helps you. It seems many people are confusing their hate of Sarah Palin for actual reasoning ability.
Comment: #6
Posted by: scott365
Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:36 AM
Uhhhhhh.....isn't it obvious Susan? Palin is defending herself from the liberal-mainstream-media libel. And she is right to do so. I mean c'mon; I certainly didn't hear anything from you when days after this tragedy the leftist pundits and commentators accused her, the Tea Party and Rush Limbaugh (or anybody who disagrees with the President) of basically causing this nutcase to do what he did.

After the elections I would've thought the Democrats and liberals would have realized they're way out of step with the majority of this country. Yet they continue do things that can only mean two things: they lie and make false accusations purposely against those who don't agree with them on policy to further their agenda or they are so far detached from reality they don't know up from down. Either case it's not good.

Democrats thought the results from the last election were bad for them? I say keep doing what your doing.
Comment: #7
Posted by: Edward Ortiz
Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:26 AM
Susan, The President did not bring the country together my friend. You are not out there listening to how many feel it is the send off on the next election. Why do the left choose not to listen to the people. Why? They have made congress irrelevant and do not need us. HMMM Sarah Palin is a threat so of course you will tear her down. She was a damn if you do and damn if you don't. No matter how and what she did would have been wrong in the eyes of the left. I live in Arizona and what the media and our Government did to handle the crisis was despicable and they should hang there head in shame. I turned on the memorial service and I turned if off because it sounded like a pep rally. Did you forget lives were lost and some were still fighting for their lives? I agree that the President gave a good speech but I question what was under all of it. I can give a great speech but what happens after is what matters. Why are we not discussing the mental ill issues? What can our government do with that issue instead of focusing on how then can benefit from the tragedy? This young man had mental issues that increased due to smoking salvia. I attended an inservice given by the AZ drug dept. and that is what they reported. Have you seen that in the news? Salvia is a legal smoked drug and what is going to be done about that? No, it was everyone ones fault politcally per the media and our government. Wow I am glad I am 56 and I will remember when our country was great and I was proud. Thank you Susan and all your other friends for taking that away from our present generation.
Comment: #8
Posted by: Kathaleen
Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:07 AM
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