Jacket Copy

Books, authors and all things bookish

« Previous | Jacket Copy Home | Next»

What 'blood libel' means

Commentator and author Sarah Palin, whose target-like attention to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) was criticized after Saturday's shooting in Arizona, released a video statement Wednesday that is proving inflammatory on its own.

In the video, Palin protested against such criticisms, saying, "journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel."

"Blood libel" is an old and unusual term. In the L.A. Times, James Oliphant reports:

Sarah Palin's remarks Wednesday in which she accused critics who would tie her political tone to the Arizona shootings of committing a "blood libel" against her have prompted an instant and pronounced backlash from some in America's Jewish community.

The term dates to the Middle Ages and refers to a prejudice that Jewish people used Christian blood in religious rituals.

"Instead of dialing down the rhetoric at this difficult moment, Sarah Palin chose to accuse others trying to sort out the meaning of this tragedy of somehow engaging in a 'blood libel' against her and others," said David Harris, president of the National Democratic Jewish Council, in a statement. "This is of course a particularly heinous term for American Jews, given that the repeated fiction of blood libels are directly responsible for the murder of so many Jews across centuries -- and given that blood libels are so directly intertwined with deeply ingrained anti-Semitism around the globe, even today."

"The term 'blood libel' is not a synonym for 'false accusation,' " said Simon Greer, president of Jewish Funds for Justice. "It refers to a specific falsehood perpetuated by Christians about Jews for centuries, a falsehood that motivated a good deal of anti-Jewish violence and discrimination. Unless someone has been accusing Ms. Palin of killing Christian babies and making matzoh from their blood, her use of the term is totally out of line."

Read the complete report here

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Comments () | Archives (9)

The comments to this entry are closed.

Poor Sarah. She's the victim, not the six dead or Congresswoman Giffords with the bullet through her brain or other fourteen hospitalized with gunshot injuries.

This is disgusting. I wonder if Palin knows Gabrielle Giffords is jewish? If she does, it's more than disgusting.

Sarah Palin's political careered ended last Saturday. This is just some sort of bizarre way she's leaving the political scene.

Next, Princess Airhead will be proclaiming that anyone who disagrees with her is "antisemantic."


But I have checked three different Thesaurus in print and all three refer to Blood Libel as a Synonymic phrase meaning to Smear by false accusation, referencing the Falsehood told so many years ago by Christians about Jews.

Seems like some of the Jewish community is doing the same thing here. But then again if we examine the two words separately on merit both can be applied to what has been said by the Drive By Media regarding this tragedy.

The 2010 midterms really rattled the leftists' cages. They can't see straight or think straight, because of Palin on the brain. They're like disoriented red-wing blackbirds in chaotic flight, crashing into this, that, and the other.

Here, nothing p-o's a race or ethnicity more than a non-member that seemingly co-opts it's particular historical victim card -- or theological concepts. But blood and things related to it also have deep significance to all fundamental Christian groups, and not-so-fundamental groups, such as both Orthodox and Roman Catholics. In their parochialism, the leftists seem unaware that they aren't just attacking Palin over the blood libel, but most Christians as well.

And the leftists don't seem to realize what they are doing politically when they barf up their bile over Palin -- which is every chance they get. She won't be the 2012 republican presidential nominee. She wasn't ever going to be the 2012 nominee. It's the leftists' greatest fear but it just wasn't and isn't in the cards. And every time the leftists demonize her -- which will continue to be every chance they get for the next two years -- they're making the actual 2012 republican nominee look that much better (i.e., 'moderate') in the eyes of the audience leftists hope to 'evangelically' influence their way with their bilious Palin-inspired barf: The ever-important middle-ground voter.

I previously thought that we'd only get a republican-controlled senate in 2012. Given the continued extreme shoot-from-the-lip viciousness of the left toward Palin, and the institutional nature of it, it looks like we'll have a republican president as well. And a more-conservative one that we could have hoped for otherwise. P.S. After the 2012 election: An appointment of Palin to a position that does not require congressional confirmation.

cxvictum, In the future you should check a dictionary for the meaning of a word as well.

How can a true American take the meaning of what was said by Sara Palin and distort it so much. I see it as a person who does not want to play the same old dirty politcs being done in by showing her true self.
Politics has become for the goverement not the people to the tune that most people are sick of it all. Stop trying to destroy any thing, or any one that has the nerve to be themself and not what a party wants them to be!!!
Any one knows that there were not no ill meaning to what was said bt using the words blood libels.
The press and certain groups are look for any thing to advance their own cause no matter what or who it destroys' even if it is a lie or taken way out of sorts. Stop being non-American!!!!

Sarah Palin is an idiot, that's plain and simple. The only thing she can do is provoke anger out of people and you call her a trail blazer?


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


Explore Bestsellers Lists





Tweets and retweets from L.A. Times staff writers.