Are You an Anti-Semite? Take This Handy Quiz to Find Out | OZY

WHY YOU SHOULD CARE

Because it can be hard to judge your own biases.

This is an OZY original Immodest Proposal — a bold, provocative op-ed with a twist.

You are disgusted by the recent spate of anti-Semitic hate crimes, but you’re also a little concerned this is going to make it more difficult to criticize Israel — which deserves to be criticized — without being labeled an anti-Semite.  

You’re not the only one who’s frustrated. So with Israel once again in the news with yet another election on Monday, I’ve created a quiz to determine if you truly are an anti-Semite, or just anti-Israel. It’s true/false, so it’s easy. The only tricky part: being honest. Some questions ask for your first, visceral response, so look up “visceral” if you’re not completely sure what it means, and let’s begin: 

  1. When Jews bring up the Holocaust as a justification for Israel, your first, visceral reaction is “Here we go again with the Holocaust!” When African Americans bring up lynchings and slavery in the context of the effects of racism, the need for affirmative action and so on, your first, visceral reaction is NOT “Here we go again with the lynchings and slavery!”   
  2. You read about an Iranian American family detained and questioned for hours. Your heart breaks for them. You read further and discover the family is not Muslim, but Jewish. First you’re confused (there are Iranian Jews?). Then you hope the American Civil Liberties Union is saving its resources for a real (i.e., Muslim) Iranian American family. 
  3. You feel a kinship with Israel as a democracy that, like the U.S., largely protects the rights of gays, women and minorities but falls short of true equality in practice.  
  4. Just reading the phrase “You feel a kinship with Israel” made you bristle. You could never feel a kinship with Israel! 
  5. When you hear that a Jewish man has been beaten by people calling him a dirty Jew, you have the same first, visceral reaction as you do when you hear that an African American man has been beaten by people calling him n—–.  
  6. When Joe Biden celebrated working with segregationists, that was it — there is no excusing racism. When you discovered organizers of the Women’s March were followers of Louis Farrakhan, you explained to Jews (or to your social media followers, or you thought to yourself) that they shouldn’t let right-wingers divide us. Ditto for why it was OK for the D.C. Dyke March to ban the Star of David.  
  7. You see a flyer advertising a Jewish film festival. Your first unfiltered thought is: “It’s probably a bunch of films celebrating Palestinian oppression.”
  8. When innocent Jewish Israelis are murdered by Palestinian terrorists, your first, visceral reaction is “There is no such thing as ‘innocent Jewish Israelis.’” And my use of “murdered” was uncalled for.  
  9. When you read the above link, you read it with an eye toward finding Israel’s fault, and were more outraged by Israel’s plan to bulldoze the family’s home than by the fact that terrorists will stab a child to death in her bed (and is it fair to call them “terrorists”?).  
  10. When I tell you that Israel accepted a peace plan by President Bill Clinton but the Palestinians rejected it and Clinton blames the Palestinian side, your first, visceral reaction (besides that I’m lying) is that Clinton must have been under the influence of the Jewish lobby.  

Answer key 

  1. True=1; False=0 
  2. True=1; False=0 
  3. True=0; False=1 
  4. True=1; False=0 
  5. True=0; False=1 
  6. True=1; False=0 
  7. True=1; False=0 
  8. True=1; False=0 
  9. True=1; False=0 
  10. True=1; False=0 

Score  

  • 0: Not anti-Semitic.  
  • 1-2: A little anti-Semitic. 
  • 3 and above: You hate Jews. 

Did you pass? Mazel tov!  

Are you anti-Semitic? Don’t despair. I understand how it happens: Political polarization means that if the opposing party is “for” something — and Donald Trump is all about being pro-Israel — you can be pretty sure you should be against it. Do you need to research every issue? This principle is especially prevalent on Instagram, where all you may see is a photo and caption.  

It is also at work at political protests. At a climate march I attended at Rutgers University, a speaker talked as much and as passionately about “Palestinian oppression” as she did about climate change. I wondered how many fellow protesters had never given five minutes of thought to this particular conflict but now had a strong stance.   

If you took the quiz, were honest in your answers and are unhappy with the result, the best thing you can do is your own research with an open mind and heart. Read about what Israeli society is truly like for Jews and Arabs. Read Clinton’s account of the peace process in My Life. Or about Israeli doctors treating wounded Arabs from neighboring countries without hesitation or question. 

And then post about it on Insta.