Mystical Nazi Sex Gods, p.3

Why, I paused to wonder, do the protesters bother me so much? They really do - their phony pieties, their special victimhood, their total disregard for contemporary genocides that rival the Holocaust in scope (Tibet) and horror (Rwanda). How many of those protesters even know that over a million Tibetans have been murdered by the Chinese authorities? How many of them know but don't care? They read "Never Again" not as "no genocide ever again" but as "Never Again Will Germans Kill Jews."

Outside the Jewish community, it might seem as though there is only one central lesson of the Holocaust: baseless hatred and racism can lead to unimaginable evil. But inside the Jewish community, there is a second lesson, which often is more loudly proclaimed than the first: the Jews are special. This happened to us. There's the rest of the world, and then there's us, and this happened to us. And we get privileges. Whether those privileges are a little less scrutiny than other nations when it comes to Israel's treatment of the Palestinians, or just an extra dose of respect and sympathy from the goyim, they're ours. Sure, the black people have slavery. But we've got this.

Why my rage? Because, I think, I'm enticed by the power of Nazism just as much as the protesters are. I, too, want to claim authority over the powerful, mystical, evil demon-god named Hitler. I want to say: "I understand the Holocaust better than the survivors do! They callously use the evils of the Holocaust for their own, selfish aims. I, on the other hand, have more insight into the phenomenon of the Holocaust, am more sensitive than they are. They may have cried at Schindler's List. But I cried at Shoah!"

So I, too, want to claim ownership of the Holocaust, to make it my Special Privilege as a member of the Jewish people. The outrage I feel toward the protesters is tinged with the protesters' own self-righteousness. "How dare you use the Holocaust for your own aggrandizement! Can't you see how terrible it was!"

Likewise my criticisms of the aesthetics of the protesters. They want kitsch, the same platitudes about human evil and Jewish suffering. They want to use the Holocaust as some kind of sex toy to replace their impotent Jewish spirituality, and as a weapon to keep their kids in the fold. I want to say it is really evil - respect me.

The entire Holocaust industry, myself included, is entranced by this irresistible, erotic allure of evil -- not as a temptation to do wrong, but as a magical potency to channel to our own purposes. For us as well as the Nazis themselves, the mythic Nazi genocide represents awesome power, human potential (for evil or for domination), aggrandizement, mythos. The Nazis glorified it, we deplore it. But both sides are charged with the kinetic power of the Holocaust, like the turbines of Monsters Inc. powered by the screams of innocent children.

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April 2002

jay's head