The Book of Esther is unique in the Tanach (Jewish Bible) as it portrays what can be described nothing less as textbook anti-Semitism: where Jews are hated just because they are the universal “other.” While there are other portrayals of those who “hated on” Jews in the Tanach, this is the only time when the Jews were hated, just because of the very fact they are Jewish.
Megillas Esther makes this quite clear that Haman hated Jews “just because.”
“…They told Haman, in order to see whether Mordecai’s resolve would prevail; for he had explained to them that he was a Jew.” – Esther 3:4
The very explanation “he was a Jew” (Moredchai is referred to as “Yehudi,” the Jew) was enough to explain the very hatred that came from the heart of the Haman. He goes onto exclaim that the Jews likely have “dual loyalty,” as are a “people, scattered and dispersed among the other peoples in all the provinces of your realm, whose laws are different from those of any other people and who do not obey the king’s laws…” — Esther 3:8
Never had anti-Semitism been explained so perfectly: that Jews were hated because we are Jewish, different, set aside from the rest of the nations. It’s interesting to note that the term “The Jew” היהודי, only appears in Megillas Esther, yet has become the term most used to represent Israelites.
What does this exactly have to do with Michael Che?
More than a few, even within Klal Yisrael, have argued that his comments were “just criticism” of Israel. That he just was making a joke about the divisions between the Country of Israel and Palestine. Some even argued that Israelis make similar jokes in their stand-up comedy, so why can’t an American Christian make the same jokes?
As always, we must also ask the obvious: why focus on Israel? Israel is about the size of New Jersey, and just a little bit larger than the population – but is over 75% Jewish. It’s an easy joke because Jews will always be an “easy joke.” Misconceptions about our religious history, our current beliefs, combined with the decimation of our population because of the Shoah (Holocaust) mean that we are always going to be the focus of ridicule, resentment and hate.
While it would be overboard to describe Michael Che as some rabid Jewish hater, that’s not even the criticism.
It’s that we live in a society where being “woke” means tolerance for everyone, except for Yehudim.
“Of all the extreme fanaticism which plays havoc in man’s nature, there is not one as irrational as anti-Semitism. … If the Jews are rich [these fanatics] are victims of theft. If they are poor, they are victims of ridicule. If they take sides in a war, it is because they wish to take advantage of the spilling of non-Jewish blood. If they espouse peace, it is because they are scared by their natures or traitors. If the Jew dwells in a foreign land he is persecuted and expelled. If he wishes to return to his own land, he is prevented from doing so.” — Lloyd George