I’m not going to spend this little space describing how I feel about Ann Coulter. You wouldn’t be able to print most of it. My goal is merely to point out where Ms. Coulter and UW freshman Heidi Voss ("Ann Coulter: A great American," Oct. 17) have been factually incorrect in their statements over the past week. First, Ms. Coulter’s belief that Christians view themselves as perfected Jews is simply historically illogical. Very few Christians came from Jews. The vast majority of Christians were converted from other groups, which are collectively known, for the most part, as “barbarians.” Ms. Coulter’s and Ms. Voss’ ancestors were never Jewish. So whatever logic makes Christians “perfected Jews” is beyond me. Second, Ms. Coulter’s statement that the United States would be better off if Jews converted to Christianity: Even excluding the Holocaust, this shows extreme historical ignorance. Jews have a 2,000-year history of people either trying to kill us because we’re Jewish (the pogroms) or trying to convert us (the Spanish Inquisition). So when someone says that the U.S. would be better off if we were no longer Jewish, we don’t think of it as a courageous political statement. It’s more along the lines of hate speech. Ms. Coulter’s statement that Christians tolerate Jews but the U.S. would be better off if we all converted to Christianity is not that different from saying that you respect blacks, Asians and Latinos, but think the U.S. would be better off if they moved back to Africa, Asia and Latin America. Third, Ms. Voss’ beliefs that Jews wish Christians were Jews is just wrong. It is difficult to convert to Judaism. You have to take months, if not years, of lessons. If you aren’t circumcised and are male, you need to be. We don’t encourage conversion in any form, except in the case of a Jew marrying a Christian. Honestly, we don’t care what Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists or anyone else does. We just don’t want you to try to convert us by consistently telling us why we’re wrong. We don’t need to be saved; we’re doing just fine, thanks. And we wouldn’t mind if we didn’t have to hear about Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving. Jews are particularly concerned when people make statements like Ms. Coulter made, even if they are made through stupidity or ignorance instead of malice. We know a bit too well what stupidity and ignorance can lead to. Noah Eisner UW alumnus, 2004, history [email protected]
This article was published Oct 18, 2007 at 12:00 am, and last updated Oct 18, 2007 at 12:00 am.