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The Schmooze

Don’t You Dare Claim To Be Jewish, Paul Ryan

Paul Ryan is a hypocrite who has devoted his career to disenfranchising poor, non-white citizens to curry favor with the rich. His life’s work has been making existence harder for most Americans.

And we’ll be damned if he gets to claim he’s Jewish.

The upcoming season of the popular PBS program “Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates Jr,” will apparently reveal genetic testing that shows that Ryan, a Catholic, is “3% Ashkenazi Jewish.”

As a people we’re obligated to lay claim to the world’s malevolent and embarrassing Jews: We’ve owned, over the years, the Bernie Madoff’s and the Harvey Weinstein’s. We’re working to deal with our shandas.

But we’re not going down for a sapphire-eyed hangman whose vile policies are the opposite of Torah values. We’re not a charity, and we’re not adopting a guy who does things like tell made up anecdotes to justify passing laws that will starve children. This one’s on you, Christians.

Here at the Schmooze we define Jews by Israel’s Law of Return, which stipulates that if a person is even as distant as the grandchild of a Jew, they can make aliyah to Israel, so long as they have not converted to another religion. Paul Ryan is neither by that loose definition, nor by any other definition, Jewish.

This is hardly in contention — Ryan isn’t claiming to be Jewish, just to have ethnic ties to the Jewish people that somehow grant him status, as he put it, as “a member of the family.”


As Forward editor Dan Friedman points out in his article on the DNA testing trend, “Believing that people make decisions, have characteristics and are distinct because of their genetic construction is the basis of race theory.” Ryan’s Jewish “percentage” doesn’t reflect his religion, identity, or meaningful ties to a Jewish relative, only a desire to bamboozle us into supporting him based on his racial makeup.

Ryan is a slick, greedy power-broker whose attempts to kill Obamacare, slash Medicaid, and refusal to pass reasonable gun violence prevention laws have actually resulted in children’s deaths. Every disgusting stereotype ever lobbed at Jews is realized in his behavior.

We don’t need that mishegas. His transparent pandering to Jews won’t affect his attitude towards anti-Semitism; it will only lull powerful Republican Jews into an even deeper coma when it comes to Ryan and his cronies’ total indifference to human suffering.

So don’t you dare claim to be one of us, Paul Ryan. If we don’t see you on the night of September 18, fully converted and screaming an earnest viddui to the high heavens — forget it.

Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny

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