Discover more from Rationalist Judaism
The Jews and The Scientists
Some people wonder why it's antisemitic to say that the Jews run Hollywood. After all, with the exception of Disney, pretty much every movie studio was started and run by Jews.
There are two answers to this. One is that studios are one part of enormous corporations with many levels of involvement, and so it's meaningless to talk about anyone running them.
The other answer is that there is an enormous difference between saying that Jews run Hollywood and saying that "the" Jews run Hollywood. Yes, there are many Jews in prominent positions in the industry, but when you say "the Jews run Hollywood," this implies that they are running it as a coordinated unit, separate from everyone else, with a further implication that there is a distinct agenda.
I was reminded of this recently while having a conversation with a terrific yeshivish guy about science. He made reference to what "the scientists" say. It occurred to me that this is a style of speech that you don't hear outside of the yeshiva world. People talk about what science says, or perhaps about what scientists say, but not about what the scientists say.
Although this person was refreshingly well educated and was not anti-science, he was referring to the scientists in the context of a point about what religion knows and scientists do not. And it made me think that perhaps yeshivish people talk about The Scientists for the same reasons that some people talk about The Jews. Referring to them as "The" seems to imply that they are a coordinated unit, separate from everyone else, with a distinct agenda.
What do The Rationalist Judaism readers think?