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Business site raises eyebrows by asking 'Why Do Some People Hate Jews?'
Business Insider CEO and Editor-in-Chief Henry Blodget in New York earlier this year.
May 30th, 2012
10:25 AM ET

Business site raises eyebrows by asking 'Why Do Some People Hate Jews?'

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - The Business Insider, a popular business-focused news website, posted a curious headline on its site: “Why Do Some People Hate Jews?”

Tuesday's headline and accompanying blog post, from Business Insider CEO and Editor-in-Chief Henry Blodget, wound up turning a lot of heads. The avalanche of response and criticism prompted Blodget - a high-profile former Wall Street analyst - to revise his headline and offer explanations/defenses of his post throughout the day.

“Along with many other sites, this site is occasionally visited by people whose mission in life appears to be to express hatred of Jews,” Blodget wrote in his original post. “And hatred of Jews has obviously been an ongoing theme worldwide for centuries.

“What is the source of this animosity? Why does it perpetuate itself? Where did this prejudice come from?”

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The query drew plenty of tongue wagging from many corners of the Internet. “That’s right, there sure is nowhere better to suss out the reasoning behind one of the greatest attempted genocides of our modern times than in an Internet comments section,” Mediaite jested in a post that seethed disapproval.

“Is this how websites get traffic now?” Mediaite writer Jon Bershad continued. “Should Mediaite’s next slideshow be 'Top 10 Stereotypes About Black People'?"

Later Tuesday, Blodget updated his piece with a new headline, “What Are the Sources of Anti-Semitism?” explaining the initial headline “made a lot of people angry ...  (s)o I changed it.”

Blodget also subbed out the original photo, which he characterized as featuring a pair of “jovial Orthodox Jews,” with a picture of Jewish actress Natalie Portman. He wrote that some readers found the original photo “needlessly provocative.”

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By day’s end, Blodget offered his seventh update, saying that he wish he’d never published the piece. “Whatever interesting responses came from the post, I now regret writing it,” Blodget wrote. "I am very sorry to anyone I offended. I sincerely apologize.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Judaism

soundoff (1,236 Responses)
  1. just sayin

    How long are the Jews going to play the "poor me" card?????

    May 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Ecclesiastes 7:17

      I've never thought they did.
      I guess they could do it as long as the Native Americans, Armenians and Roma people do it.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • Richard

      For another 3000 years at least.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
    • Ecclesiastes 7:17

      I don't think any group has ever done that.

      May 30, 2012 at 6:22 pm |
  2. Jayson Sath

    Why is the newsmedia so worried about being politically correct all the time???

    May 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • Frank

      I think you may be carrying some emotional baggage with the hot-button, knee-jerk phase 'Political Correctness'. 'Politically correct' speech is better called 'non-offensive' speech, as that's all its trying to be. It makes perfect sense to me that a news organization wouldn't want to offend its customers. why would you think they would want to be offensive?

      I think the real issue you are facing, is that the audience has grown too large. It would be 'politically correct' when giving a speech at a KKK/Teaparty conference, to say mean things about minorities, as long as the complexion in the room is pasty white. In a banks board room, it is 'politically correct' to complain about those horrible irresponsible debtors. God help them if the debtors ever heard though.

      CNN is simply too big to say potentially offensive things without offending people, and offending people is no way to make money (or get elected).

      don't blame the speaker, blame the audiance, who is predominately not you or me. Drop the whole 'pollitical correctness' complaint. it barely had teeth in the late 80's. nowadays it just makes one sound like a bigot.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  3. Richard

    "Some?" Who really expresses a liking for them? The reasons are simple; people perceive a group representing no more than 2-3% of the population in the West to have power vastly beyond their numbers, in media and finance and politics. They also believe them to be oblivious to criticism. Is it their fault? Partly, yes. Some of it is antisemitism, but when virtually the entire world holds some poor opinion of you, is it really the entire world whose judgement and actions are wrong??

    May 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • AR

      so your answer is "because they SHOULD." were you aware the question was rhetorical? typical antisemite... not a shred of brain in you. this is why we "control the world:" because you're too dumb to do it yourself.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • Richard

      Like I said, absolutely incapable of seeing any kind of fault, examining any criticism. Just the usual knee-jerk response which is why so many dislike you.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • mike s

      haha jews make up 0.2 percent of the world's population and they have won 18 percent of all nobel prizes, jews give money to charity which a lot of christians (vice pres biden) refuse to do...jews are teachers, lawyers, doctors, inventors. your comment is pathetic richard...most people who hate jews have never read a book and live under a dictatorship, you're so pathetic and you don't even realize it

      May 30, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • mike

      so if the entire world believes something, it must be right? i guess the world IS flat, and sun revolves around the earth. who knew?!?!?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • ariaedry

      Wow, Richard, congratulations – you are a pure-bred, 100 percent, pedigree Anti-Semite. Hope you stand tall and are proud of being a human being full of prejudice, stereotyping, and hate. Sorry, lumping millions of people together into one little ball does not equate with reason and logic.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
    • Steve

      No, just yours you mental midget.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  4. J

    I'm Jewish,and whomever doesn't like me can kiss my Kosher a**

    May 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • ME II

      ...but I thought rumps weren't kosher?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • just sayin

      lol

      May 30, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
  5. reb

    As a young religious Jewish girl, I am not surprised by this article at all since there are obviously a lot of people out there who hate people like me.
    I just wanted to say that you shouldnt make general judgements. I promise you 100% that if you met me, you would like me. I'm in college, I'm friendly and nice and I dont feel hatred against any group of people.
    Anyway, just try to think twice before you make rude statements about any group of people.
    Thanks!

    May 30, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • just sayin

      Are you hot?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • just sayin

      When I was younger I met a wonderful girl from Israel. Parents put the kabosh on it...they didn't approve of a non Jew. Sigh- I can only wonder how things would have turned out. We were perfect for each other.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • just sayin

      Mey where art though?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  6. nutandyahoo

    It has to be their greediness, selfishness, warmonger parasites who want to control politics, media and finance all over the world. I'm sure that most Americans know by now that the AIPAC is running and controlling the white house since 1992, not the president of US. Cheers! 🙂 PEACE!

    May 30, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • AR

      The elders of zion is watching you. we're tracking your IP address and if we see another post like this, we can make you disappear.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
    • ID

      Lets just hope you don't reproduce and pass on your hatefullness to the young and innocent....

      May 30, 2012 at 6:16 pm |
  7. JRG

    The responses to this headline have, I believe, answered the question itself. If you want to make any group of people overreact, just post an honest question about an issue that relates to them and watch the blubber fly.

    May 30, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
    • .

      Why do some people think JRG is a complete idiot who likes little boys?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
  8. NJreader

    It's a legitimate question, as it also would be regarding any other named group-racial, political, religious, geographic, professional, etc. I am sorry Mr. Blodgett could not get reasonable discussion instead of the stir-it-up rage he got instead, for he strikes me as a decent man of decent purpose.

    May 30, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
  9. Sir Craig

    What's sad is the response is exactly what was trying to be addressed, both good and bad. Too bad Mediaite couldn't figure that part out, but perhaps it was because the question was just too deep to be quickly answered with a mindless soundbite. It started a dialogue, which is a good thing, but it's sad the very nature of the original post, along with its original components, caused an uproar and Blodget felt it necessary to apologize. He should NOT have apologized and instead declared in a very clear style, "See? This is what I'm talking about!"

    May 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  10. Leucadia Bob

    Lighten Up People:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2yNM8_QbWQ&feature=plcp

    May 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
  11. Why

    "There are two kinds of people I can't stand. Those who are intolerant of other cultures, and the Dutch." – Nigel Powers

    May 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
  12. Drew

    My parents raised me to treat everyone equal (which through experience I have learned is not always the case) and my biggest beef is that I am constantly being sold on how great being jewish is. I am not racist and I dont hold anything against jews in general but that is just something that I have learned to live with that annoys me. Its constantly mentioned and aggrivates me that my jewish friends constantly bring up the issue when the reality is I dont really care.

    I also feel like no matter how hard I sell my Jewish friends on being a trustworthy person they are always going to trust another jew before they put their trust in me, but it is what it is. It bothers me and I have learned to accept these little qwerks from my jewish friends but I dont "hate" them for it.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • ID

      huge steriotype....i'm Jewish and most of my friends are religious Christians and I trust them like family....(even though a lot of them often try to convert me)...i don't take it personally....i still love them

      May 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
    • Steve

      Sorry but I'm going to have to call bulls*&t on you. I've known hundreds of Jews in my life and not only have they never tried to impose their religious beliefs or views on myself or others, but I've never heard a single one talk about how "great" being a Jew is. That's not to say it isn't great, it's just of the hundreds I've known it's never been a topic of discussion amongst themselves or during their interactions with others. I just don't buy what you're selling. As far as trusting their own kind over another, you'll find that in every minority in every society in the world.

      May 30, 2012 at 7:25 pm |
  13. brianyg

    I'm not really sure what to say about some of these issues... I'm an ex-Jehovahs Witness and even before I stopped attending the meetings, I had friends of all kinds. Jews, gays, muslims, hindus... drag queens... all kinds of people. I pretty much decided that if I met a person or group of people that I intially didn't understand... I was going to get to know more about them. Doing that has always been an eye opener for me. If you feel that you don't like or don't understand Jews, or gays or blacks or whites or latins or asians or... whoever... get to know them better. It WILL break down those walls and help you realize a kindred with people, that you may have never thought possible.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • ID

      nicely put...wish you and your thoughts were in the majority....unfortunately reading some of these responses really worry me...

      May 30, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
  14. Truth

    Reading the above comments still I feel people are afread to say anything against Jews. It is like a no no thing. eventhough what they are doing in Israel or any where else in the world. They started interest rate to other non jewsh people they made and making sure that the wealth only stay in their circle. If someone said something against them you know what happen to them (ex the actor Gibson)

    May 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • sbp

      Have you always been tarded?

      May 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • ID

      Mel Gibson is unstable..(have you not heard the audio tapes or heard of the restraining orders against him) i wouldn't align myself with crazy...

      May 30, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
    • Steve

      And you obviously are an anonymous foreigner and I'd stake my life on the fact that you are either uneducated or of muslim or arab decent.

      May 30, 2012 at 7:29 pm |
  15. Why

    The larger question is really: "Why does anyone hate anyone they don't even know?" It's so obviously illogical yet so very many people do it and shamelessly so.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  16. Ironic

    CNN is totally above publishing headline drive articles in an attempt to drive traffic. [Sarcasm] – "Are men stupid" – Frida Ghitis, 04/23

    May 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • Why

      I didn't read that but there you were and here you are. Works doesn't it?

      May 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  17. KA

    CNN reporting this story is perpetuating the problem. It's RIDICULOUS that we can not view others as fellow humans, but still find the need to group people together. As for the people commenting negative things about Jews, shame on you. You say can "hate" someone you don't even know because of their beliefs. It's just pathetic and not even worth arguing against. Shame on you, CNN, for perpetuating the issue of bigotry and keeping the story going.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • brianyg

      I don't think CNN is perpetuating or keeping this kind of discussion going... I see it as mankind that is keeping these discussions going. CNN is just addressing it. Putting our heads in the sand will do nothing toward breaking down these barriers. That just sweeps it under the rug. Don't be scared to look at it and to deal with it on a personal level.

      May 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
  18. fofo

    Because they forged God and sold it to everyone.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
  19. Dave Scoven

    This is the best question of the day: “Is this how websites get traffic now?” Mediaite writer Jon Bershad continued. “Should Mediaite’s next slideshow be 'Top 10 Stereotypes About Black People'?" Because the answer is "Yes." And every news website (including CNN) is doing it. And it's a huge problem. Choosing stories and running headlines designed to bait readers and instigate comments section wars (and thus spend hours on the site) is devaluing internet news. RealClearPolitics has gone from a terrific news source to nothing but trash in almost no time. It's a new trend that's got really negative implications for the future.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
  20. Reality

    Putting a damper on all things Abrahamic:

    ONLY FOR THE NEW MEMBERS OF THIS BLOG–

    origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482 NY Times review and important enough to reiterate.

    New Torah For Modern Minds

    “Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

    Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

    The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine doc-ument.

    The notion that the Bible is not literally true "is more or less settled and understood among most Conservative rabbis," observed David Wolpe, a rabbi at Sinai Temple in Los Angeles and a contributor to "Etz Hayim." But some congregants, he said, "may not like the stark airing of it." Last Passover, in a sermon to 2,200 congregants at his synagogue, Rabbi Wolpe frankly said that "virtually every modern archaeologist" agrees "that the way the Bible describes the Exodus is not the way that it happened, if it happened at all." The rabbi offered what he called a "LITANY OF DISILLUSION”' about the narrative, including contradictions, improbabilities, chronological lapses and the absence of corroborating evidence. In fact, he said, archaeologists digging in the Sinai have "found no trace of the tribes of Israel – not one shard of pottery."

    prob•a•bly

    Adverb: Almost certainly; as far as one knows or can tell.

    May 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • ~

      Go Troll somewhere else.

      May 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • ID

      very fascinating...
      Need to cooroborate your facts...hope it's true

      May 30, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.