‘NYT’ must think it has no Amish readers

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Novelist Jennifer Weiner writes about “gender and culture” for the New York Times’ op-ed page. She just published an essay about texting her 12-year-old daughter, who was at camp and miserable.

I tried encouragement (“Hang in there! You’ll be fine!”). I used tough love (“No, I am not coming to get you. It’s important for you to stick this out”). When she complained that the other girls were talking about a TV show she didn’t know, I used humor.

“Just say, ‘I’m not allowed to watch TV. I’m Amish.’ Then make up things about being Amish.”

“I’m not going to pretend to be Amish.”

“Tell them you’re not allowed to wear zippers because metal is prideful.”

“Oh God.”

“Tell them that’s why none of your bras have hooks.”


“Pretend you’ve never used an indoor toilet before. Scream after flushing.”

“OMG you’re the worst.”

Weiner identifies as being Jewish and having gone to Israel in this piece, and I wonder how much of these jokes about Amish people will seem entitled and dickish. The friend who passed this along said, “Would this be allowed if it had targeted Quakers?  For what other groups would it be allowed?  Is there a hierarchy of this stuff now with the Amish at the bottom and Quakers and Jews somewhere ‘higher’ up?  Or am I too uptight? If a Christian had said this about Orthodox Jews would the NYT have run it? If so, would the ADL comment?”

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Yes, you’re being oversensitive. No, I don’t think that if she joked around about being ultra-orthodox it would be a huge deal. But mostly, I’m wondering why your first reaction to a piece like this is to do research on the writer to see how Jewish she is, and why… Read more »

For G-d’s sake Phil, wake up and smell the NYT coffee (Robusta, not Arabica). It’s time to ‘write off’ the Times!
In fact, it’s time to ‘write off’ both Times!

RE: ‘NYT’ must think it has no Amish readers MY COMMENT: Cut the NYT a little slack, Phil. After all, it’s not like the NYT referred to the Amish as shifty-eyed rug merchants! SEE: “American Jewish leader calls Iranians manipulative ‘bazaaris’” ~ Philip Weiss, January 31, 2014 [EXCERPT] From Haaretz’s… Read more »

This column is outright weird, apparently the writer described her inability of rationally raising children. Why send a child to a camp if she is unhappy? The “Amish” motif was just an example of utter inanity. The daughter was unhappy by being excluded from the conversation, and the motherly advise… Read more »

Column wasn’t worth reading in the first place – exchange of texts with unhappy 12 year old – all made worse by publishing them for all the world to see. The Amish angle is another thoughtless taking-advantage-of-others snark. What about it was worthy of “ink?”