CBS no longer categorizes American Jews as ‘ethnic minority’

on 53 Comments

Two sociological observations about the place of Jews in the American establishment.

Last night on “60 Minutes” correspondent Byron Pitts said of Pakistani-American Shahid Khan’s purchase of the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011:

That deal made Khan the first ethnic minority to own a team in the NFL.

Many Jews own NFL teams. Marc Tracy says 10 or 11. So let’s be clear about Pitts’s meaning: Jews are not an ethnic minority. When I was growing up, it went without saying that we were. Not any longer, apparently, because we’re viewed as part of the Establishment…

This irritated me. Harvard Magazine has a feature about alumna Lauren Greenfield’s documentary about an odiously-superrich couple called David and Jackie Siegel. Called the Queen of Versailles, the movie focuses on the Siegels’s disgraceful house in Florida. The article repeatedly offers the Siegels as generic Americans: They “were just trying to live the American Dream… ‘If this film is a portrait, it is also a mirror.'”

Of course I wonder what the Siegels tell us about the new era of Jewish wealth and arrival. Now maybe Greenfield talks about that in the film. But not here:

Greenfield became interested in the lives of the 1 percenters as an undergraduate, where she studied photography under Barbara Norfleet, Ph.D. ’51, then a lecturer and curator of still photography at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, who had produced a book called All the Right People, about the WASPs of the Northeast.

Right. It’s always cool to bash those rich WASPs.

    Leave a Reply