We still have not recovered from Ben Carson’s recent suggestion that American blacks came to the United States as “immigrants.”
That’s what America is about, a land of dreams and opportunity. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters, might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.
Actually, Ben — a small quibble. They came as slaves.
But, why should Carson stop there? In the spirit of Purim, imagine what he could do with Jewish history.
“Yes, of course, that whole thing in the book of Genesis where Abraham takes his son, Isaac, to be offered as a sacrifice. Yes, right — I suppose that it was kind of traumatic for Isaac. And I know that he and his old man never talked to each other again after that went down. I got it. But, think of it this way: at least they got to spend some quality time together. A three day trip to the mountains ain’t such a bad thing, when you really think about it. And at least that angel came and stopped Abraham from offing his kid.”
“The Egyptian slavery thing for the Israelites. They got a whole holiday about that thing. They serve good food. What’s that thing where you mash up the apples and the nuts and the wine? I had that at Sheldon’s thing last spring. Anyway, everyone goes like the slavery thing was bad. Yes, for some people. But, think of it this way. All of that dragging large stones around — that was good aerobic exercise, wasn’t it? You gotta think that at least some of those Hebrews got in pretty good shape as a result of lifting all of that stuff. Am I right here, or what?”
“That thing where the Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492. Bad. Right. I understand. Some of them came to the Americas, so at least we got a new country out of the deal. How bad could that have been? And here’s the thing about that whole expulsion thing: travel has been found to be good for your general health. Especially sea travel. So, I really don’t know what they’re complaining about.”
“The Warsaw ghetto. Yes, a lot of Jews had to up and leave the places where they were living. But, have you ever been to that area in Warsaw, where the ghetto is? A very nice area. Not far from that new, great museum of Jewish culture. They could have gone to that museum, it was so close to them. And I am betting that a lot of the apartments that they got to live in were probably better than the ones that they used to live in. Just saying.”
We live in a time of alternative facts. That means that we live in a time when truth itself is on the ropes.
And if you liked Ben Carson’s re-statement of African American history, you will love Paul Ryan’s interpretation of the intersection between theology and sexuality:
“If there was a legitimate way to have intercourse and not get pregnant, God would have included it in His holy books.”
We are in trouble. And that is no Purim joke.