climateadaptation asked: i'm not jewish, and my mind cannot make that leap. my girlfriend, an east side jew and (ironically) a persian, cannot either, though she explains 'victimization rather than critical analysis' is a standard form of cultural cognitive dissonance that many jews experience. it's weird to me. and the frame doesnt exist anywhere else in your discourses - eg, you wrote about the green party last year, but you've yet to cover jill stein. shall i conclude (in a public evisceration) that you dislike her?
My sense is that this example about the Green Party isn’t perfect, but it will nonetheless allow me to illustrate my thought process, which I think is relatively free of logical leaps or cognitive dissonance.
I don’t talk about the Green Party or Jill Stein because I think they are entirely unimportant in American political discourse and, even beyond that, they matter not at all to me. I think you will find that this is generally true of political scientists; we do not care at all about Jill Stein. If someone asked me about Jill Stein and why I pay no attention to her, I might make up some sort of story about the lack of success that third party candidates have had in American politics rather than telling the truth, which is that she never, ever crosses my mind. That’s how unimportant she is to me. That way, I could just be done with it and not have to answer any further questions about why she’s so unimportant to me.
The same is true of the IOC. The deaths of Israeli Olympic athletes at the Olympics forty years has made no impact on them. They do not think of it; they do not think it’s important to make mention of it. In fact, they didn’t much care about those deaths at the time, except insofar as they might damage the Games. Here’s a little description of what went on at the Games in 1972 and some information on the people behind the decision at the time:
Competition at the games had continued until mid-afternoon that Tuesday. Only after a barrage of criticism did IOC President Avery Brundage suspend activities. Brundage, who served as president of American Olympic Committee in the 1930s, had been a great admirer of Hitler and, as late as 1971, had insisted that the Berlin games were one of the best ever. In 1936, when some Americans tried to organize a boycott of the games, Brundage fought the effort vigorously until he decided to use it as a fundraising tool. He assumed that Jews who were embarrassed by the threat of a boycott would give to the AOC and help decrease anti-Semitism in the United States. Brundage’s plan apparently came to naught.
At the Munich memorial service, held on Wednesday, Sept. 6, the day after the massacre, Brundage defiantly declared: “The games must go on.” His cry was met with cheers by the crowd. (Red Smith of the New York Times described it as more pep rally than memorial.) The games did go on, but the Los Angeles Times reporter Jim Murray described it as “like having a dance at Dachau.”
When the IOC was repeatedly asked about memorializing the Israeli victims of the Munich terrorist attack, current IOC President Jacques Rogge said, “We feel that the opening ceremony is an atmosphere that is not fit to remember such a tragic incident.” This is the sort of excuse I might make about Jill Stein, a statement designed to ward off further questions.
The trouble is that when the British hosts of this year’s Olympics said they’d like to pay “tribute to the deceased friends and family of spectators, who had been asked to send in photos,” the IOC said “That will be just fine.” And so then a quiet, touching moment of reflection on those deaths took place during the opening ceremony.
Imagine if, after saying that I don’t discuss Jill Stein because third party candidates just don’t perform well in American elections, I spent weeks discussing Gary Johnson and the Libertarian Party. I explained his platform, I suggested that he ought to be invited to the presidential debates, and the like. All while making no mention of Jill Stein and the Green Party.
What would you conclude, then, about my feelings about Jill Stein?