In some sort of feverish lapse of judgment, last week The New York Times published what will forever be known as its “Congressional Jew List.” Last Thursday, the paper ran an online article entitled “Lawmakers Against the Iran Nuclear Deal.” It was an insult to all Americans.
We are more bemused than outraged. And the yellow highlight was just … tacky.
In the first iteration of the online piece—subsequently edited after disbelieving and vociferous criticism—there was a chart that listed senators and representatives not alphabetically but by religious affiliation. Well, not quite: only Jewish legislators were singled out by religion. Then there was a column heading labeled “Jewish?” And to ensure that readers didn’t miss the significance of the votes, each “yes” was highlighted in yellow. A second column, which withstood the Times’ rigorous bias checking and remained on the Times’ website, detailed the state’s Jewish population. And those with a percentage greater than the 2.2 percent national average were also highlighted in yellow.
Some criticized the Times’ insensitivity. Others were aghast at the paper’s insinuation that Jewish legislators have a dual loyalty to Israel. We are more bemused than outraged. And the yellow highlight was just … tacky.
Worst of all, the chart got it all wrong. We were buoyed by the Times‘ original report that 15 Jewish Democrats had opposed the disastrous Iran deal. A lengthy, apologetic Editors’s Note, added after the religion category was removed, noted that the correct number was only eight.