Saturday, May 01, 2004

Please visit Roger L. Simon and follow his links in the post concerning anti-Semitism. I would like to take a moment to tell a little story about my own experience with this which, for me, was too close to home. I'll title it ALL IN THE FAMILY.

I am married to a Mexican lady, whose father is a semi-retired attorney here in Puebla, Mexico. He is a local attorney of some note, having once been the Dean of the Law School of the Autonomous University of Puebla. When sitting with him in a local coffee shop or walking around the city or the UAP campus, most everyone who stops to shake hands and chat refers to him as "Doctor", "maestro", or "profesor".

We have enjoyed some long discussions about many various subjects, but I have learned the hard way to limit our conversations to history or art, and here is why. He has no experience whatsoever with the net and I doubt he has ever personally viewed a web page, which is why I feel safe in publishing this anecdote. As an example, one day the subject of el Cid came up. You know, the legend upon which the Charlton Heston movie, "El Cid", was based. He said that he knew little of the history of Castilla (Castille in English), but he believed that the legend was more or less true. Of course, yours truly went right to the net to research el Cid. It turns out that, yes, the man existed, and was referred to as "El Cid". While he was indeed a mighty warrior, he was certainly no hero. More of a shrewd political operator who eventually got his. I dutifully reported back to my suegro (father-in-law) with my newfound knowledge and a printed download to boot. He was more than impressed with the speed with which I was able to answer but less than impressed, more like disappointed, with the results. I should have taken that reaction as a warning. I relate that story as an introduction to the next one.

Another day in the same coffee shop, we were discussing the latest atrocity in Israel. You know, the same boring story; suicide bomber, a dozen killed, half being school children, etc., etc.. He then, out of the clear blue sky, stated that he could understand the Palestinian actions in light of the fact that the Jews had maintained a vast conspiracy to dominate the world for several hundred years, and that this had been known to the rest of the world ever since the discovery, quite by accident, of their manifesto, known as The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

I was so astonished that I began laughing. "What?" I gasped. "You don't mean that old, thoroughly discredited forgery, or do you?" He said, "Yes", and stated further that it was NOT a forgery, only declared so by the Jews. End of koffee klatch. I said that I had to go, and then got. Right to the net to do some research on this tome about which I really knew very little. Three or four hours later, I felt that I was sufficiently armed to the teeth, and awaited the following day's now ominous-appearing capuccino.

I presented to him what I considered to be irrefutable documentation to the effect that The Protocols was not, in fact, a forgery. It was a forgery of a plagiarism. What started out as a legitimate stage play about a group of royals hatching a plot to take over some European city-state was plagiarized by a ne'er-do-well German ex con who replaced every mention of the various royals with "Jews", and the city-state with "the world". Then it gets stolen from him and published as the "miraculously discovered" Protocols. I presented names, dates and a list of sources in the U. S. and Great Britain as well as in Spain (in Spanish).

He listened with great patience, accepted the documentation with a gracias, and then, as we stood up to go our separate ways, stated, and I quote, "It is still all the Jews' fault." (Todaví­a todo es la culpa de los judíos).

Whadaya gonna do? This highly educated, experienced, well-traveled, well respected professional is, I discovered, a raging anti-Semitic bigot and probably a racist too.

I spent a couple of days in a funk, like one might experience upon learning that Superman was a petty shoplifter at Wal-mart. The only thing to be cheerful about was my newfound knowledge about the Protocols. I had learned a great deal and for that was thankful. But how to change the thinking of that old bigot? Impossible, I wisely decided. Better to just forget it and avoid the subject in the future. He is of such an advanced age that, by the time my boys are old enough to have discussions about subjects of this import, he won't be around to talk to them.

It would be my hope that there is a significant number of people who have open minds to the extent that they can accept irrefutable evidence as such, and not dispute it, or worse, simply ignore it, because of some deeply engraved beliefs stamped in their psyches by who-knows-who, who-knows-when. I personally abhor the thought of forever being at the mercy of some who-knows-who, who-knows-when.

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