And there's so many Kanyes
A big week for antisemitism
I have to admit, I didn’t think it would be Ye. I saw the right’s turn toward overt antisemitism coming for years; the belated ascendance of the Pat Buchanan wing of the Republican Party made that almost inevitable. In the long handoff from the old, privately antisemitic WASP elites to the MAGA populists, Christendom’s oldest and most totalizing conspiracy theory was bound to at least bubble to the surface — even if it had to pass through the weird, if no less violent, fantasies of “Christian Zionist” philosemitism along the way.
Who knew it would be the artist formerly known as Kanye West who’d send up the unpopped trial balloon? Ye has always been a conspiratorial sort, writing as often as not about a multivarious “they” bent on silencing him. (“They say you can rap about anything except for Jesus,” he rapped on “Jesus Walks” — whose eventual triple-platinum certification only assured him of his own self-righteous immortality.) His gravitation toward the paranoias of Trump and Trumpism was not going to be helpful for that kind of mindset, nor his apparently humiliating and extremely public divorce. He also clearly struggles with mental health (though who doesn’t at times).
But in the end, the reasons this particular celebrity went in on old-school Judenhass are far less important than the reaction his “death con 3 on Jews” rant engendered on the right — ranging from impassioned, supposedly value-neutral defenses of his right to free speech (the path
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