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On The Self-Hatred Of Maps

11:52 am: NYT's "City Room" blog mentions a new "Jewish Landmarks Map" of New York City. 12:34 pm: Some guy named "Yehuda" attacks the map, wringing his hands in his opener — "Is this what’s important to Jews?!" — and … Read More

By / September 5, 2007

11:52 am: NYT's "City Room" blog mentions a new "Jewish Landmarks Map" of New York City.

12:34 pm: Some guy named "Yehuda" attacks the map, wringing his hands in his opener — "Is this what’s important to Jews?!" — and insisting that "Judaism is not about food, guilt, and self-hatred."

That's an entire 42-minute lapse! Back in the day, it wouldn't take longer than 3 minutes for a furious fundie to decry Jewish perfidy over a map! Is it distraction over the High Holy Days, or are the defenders of the faith slipping? (For what it's worth, my rejoinder to Yehuda is at #6.)

But Yehuda's not the only one having conniptions over cartography. My favorite thus far — and there will be dozens more — is Herbert at #16: "While I am Jewish, I resent and object to 'The map was produced with city funds.' The city has no business using public funds to support ethic pride."

And there's more. Oh, so much more, like mental manna pouring forth from every Jew with an opinion on a map! If the Noah Feldman piece prompted a soul-searching debate about reunion photos and intermarriage, what might the codification of "Jewish Landmarks" do? Expect an Editorial and three Op-Eds in The Jewish Week by next Thursday.

Let us all give thanks this New Year to The New York Times, which has once again given us a platform to argue over what it means to be a Jew.

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