Imagine it is the summer of 2000 soon after presidential candidate Al Gore chose Senator Joseph Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew, to be his vice-presidential running mate. Newsweek does a cover story on Lieberman’s historic selection. Blazed across the cover are the words, “The Jewish Moment,” with a photograph of Lieberman, though the image is photoshopped. The face is clearly Lieberman’s, but in the image he is bearded in full rabbinic garb sitting at a desk preparing a sermon. And over his left shoulder is a short line that leads to a phrase in small print, “Joseph Lieberman, Jew for Vice President.” I suspect that the Anti-Defamation League would not find this depiction of a Jewish United States Senator even remotely amusing. They would, rightfully, see it as an image that plays to the sorts of stereotypes that have often accompanied anti-semitism in both its benign and most malignant forms.
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