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Kosher Meals Cost Taxpayers Over Half a Million Dollars: What if These Were Halal Meals?

1 February 2012 Loonwatch.com 82 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

Kosher Meals Cost Taxpayers Over Half a Million Dollars: What if These Were Halal Meals?

GOP presidential hopeful and rabid Islamophobe Newt Gingrich is slamming Mitt Romney for vetoing a 2003 bill that would allocate an additional $600,000 of taxpayer money to provide poor Jewish nursing home residents with Kosher meals.  Thundered Gingrich:

Romney as Governor eliminated kosher food for retired Jewish senior citizens…He has no understanding of the importance of religious liberty in this country.

I myself don’t have a problem with providing Kosher meals, and I would not have opposed the additional funding like Romney did.  But, this does beg the question: what if this had been about Halal meals instead?

Had that been the case, the situation would have been completely reversed.  In that scenario, had Mitt Romney supported a bill that allocated over half a million dollars of taxpayer money to Halal meals for poor Muslim nursing home residents, what do you think Newt Gingrich and the rest of the right-wing would be saying then?  They would be ruthlessly attacking him for this.

We’d also hear a lot about how Muslims in America and the West in general demand “special rules” and “special treatment”–how they have a “feeling of entitlement.”  We’d hear about how Muslims want “hand-outs” and “leech off” of the rest of us.  We’d hear all the typical racist and bigoted charges that are often levied against non-white minorities.

Whenever a minority asks for cultural or religious accommodation, especially Muslims, they are accused of such things.  What good, white, Judeo-Christian folk sometimes fail to realize is that the system is by default heavily bent in their favor, with “special accommodations” for them already built in.

This reminds me of a conversation I overheard between a Christian and Muslim colleague of mine.  The Christian employee was complaining about how “it was unfair” that the Muslim colleague got to come in late for work on his religious holiday (Eid) and leave a bit early on that same day; she said: “It’s not fair: you guys get our Christmas off but we don’t get your holiday off.”  I couldn’t believe my ears.  She gets a whole two weeks off to go visit her family in another state, whereas he gets half a day off so that he can take his wife and kids out to eat at the local kabob joint.  The Muslim employee wants “special treatment” (if you can call it that) because the system is already so slanted in favor of the dominant, majority group.

I’ve seen a similar occurrence with Friday prayers, with Muslim colleagues racing back and forth during lunch to make it in time.  Meanwhile, Jews get Saturday off and Christians get Sunday off–by default.  At my work, we often have to come in on Saturdays, but observant Jews can get it off by “special request.”  If Muslims made that sort of request, we wouldn’t hear the end of it.

This is a nation of immigrants, and as such, we must be ready to accommodate–within the bounds of reason–various races, religions, and customs.  The only alternative, I suppose, is to adopt the nativist view of right-wingers: “they” must accommodate to “us.”  This view, however, fails to realize that both groups need to bend a little to accommodate the other.

Speaking of Kosher and Halal, one recalls how the Queen of Islamophobia, Pamela Geller, who is herself Jewish, attacks Muslims for how cruel Halal slaughter is, even though it’s virtually the exact same process used by Jews for Kosher.  Had a candidate supported a bill to give half a million dollars to provide Halal food, Geller would be screeching about how this was providing state support for evil Muslim butchery and animal cruelty.  Common sense and rationality are lost with such absurdities.

On that note, I think it would behoove the reader to consider how dramatically different views are when we substitute “Jew” for “Muslim” or the other way around: for example, the standard “you can’t be racist against Muslims, because Muslim is not a race” doesn’t seem right when we say “you can’t be racist against Jews, because Jew is not a race.”  It’s a worthwhile exercise to do any time you read a story about Muslims: just do the substitution and ask yourself if it sounds right.  There’s a reason it doesn’t: all of these anti-Muslim smears were once used against Jews: it’s the same message, just used against a different minority group.

Islamophobes never want to play the substitution game, which is why they cry “tu quoque, tu quoque” whenever anyone uses it.  They must at all costs prevent it from being used because it lays bare their bigotry.

In this particular case, it’s supporting “religious freedom” to use taxpayer money to provide Kosher meals to Jewish residents.  But remember: it would be against freedom and free choice to mandatetaxpayer money to provide Halal meals for Muslims.  When it’s about Kosher, then it’s forcing your religious beliefs onto Jews to not provide Kosher meals, thereby “forcing” them to eat non-Kosher meals; when it’s about Halal, then it’s Muslims forcing their beliefs onto us, by forcing us to provide them with special meals.

As George Orwell said: ”Actions are held to be good or bad, not on their own merits, but according to who does them.”

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

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82 Comments »

  1. as far as GOPers are concerned, there is no such thing as an American Muslim, and I am sure with the Newtster….we’d all be shipped out pronto once he became Nazi in Chief

  2. as far as GOPers are concerned, there is no such thing as an American Muslim, and I am sure with the Newtster….we’d all be shipped out pronto once he became Nazi in Chief

  3. Eat what you want. I don’t care. Everyone has a choice in what they eat!

  4. Eat what you want. I don’t care. Everyone has a choice in what they eat!

  5. These two are both nuts!

  6. I don’t see any problem with Tax payers money going to the poor, whether they are Jews, Muslim, or Christians, somehow some one is gonna have to help the poor and it is us the the people. Be compassionate and you will get it back 10 times fold.

  7. I don’t see any problem with Tax payers money going to the poor, whether they are Jews, Muslim, or Christians, somehow some one is gonna have to help the poor and it is us the the people. Be compassionate and you will get it back 10 times fold.

  8. these two do nothing but bash each other so how can we trust our government to two people acting like elementary children?

  9. these two do nothing but bash each other so how can we trust our government to two people acting like elementary children?

  10. Because Obama doesn’t do that?

  11. Because Obama doesn’t do that?

  12. I would be very much in favor of this kind of consideration being shown to both Muslims and Jews. Both should be able to follow the beliefs they hold sacred.

  13. I would be very much in favor of this kind of consideration being shown to both Muslims and Jews. Both should be able to follow the beliefs they hold sacred.

  14. Neither of these men are fit to be president.

  15. Neither of these men are fit to be president.

  16. Politifact found this claim “mostly false.” The decision was made before Romney came into office, and it only affected one home. Most importantly, the issue was NOT whether residents could have access to Kosher food. It was whether they could have a kosher kitchen, or whether food would be brought in.

  17. Politifact found this claim “mostly false.” The decision was made before Romney came into office, and it only affected one home. Most importantly, the issue was NOT whether residents could have access to Kosher food. It was whether they could have a kosher kitchen, or whether food would be brought in.

  18. Since when have Newt Gingrich and facts had any but the most tenuous of relationship?

  19. Since when have Newt Gingrich and facts had any but the most tenuous of relationship?

  20. These two candidates – both would be a disaster as president – an unprecedented disaster!

  21. These two candidates – both would be a disaster as president – an unprecedented disaster!

  22. Halal is halal ,,, haram is haram,,there are not violence between that !!

  23. Halal is halal ,,, haram is haram,,there are not violence between that !!

  24. i agree with you Mary Ward.. an unprecedented disaster.

  25. i agree with you Mary Ward.. an unprecedented disaster.

  26. Kosher meals are also halal, I know this because I’ve had Muslim friends and co-workers that were observant and had a hard time eating out. On learning from them that Kosher food is lawfully Halal as well (a stricter standard even) it made it a little easier for me to find places i could enjoy meals with my Muslim friends and co-workers.

  27. Kosher meals are also halal, I know this because I’ve had Muslim friends and co-workers that were observant and had a hard time eating out. On learning from them that Kosher food is lawfully Halal as well (a stricter standard even) it made it a little easier for me to find places i could enjoy meals with my Muslim friends and co-workers.

  28. And nobama is any better?

  29. And nobama is any better?

  30. Mooselimbs must assimilate into our culture or leave. There are plenty of ignorant countries for the followers of allan and his ideology to overthrow. Just not here. No diareha law here

  31. Mooselimbs must assimilate into our culture or leave. There are plenty of ignorant countries for the followers of allan and his ideology to overthrow. Just not here. No diareha law here

  32. Chris, you’re an asshat. Go back to your miserable little hole, miserable little troll.

  33. Really Chris, you get that ignorant attitude from your 5th grade education or your ignorant parents. Asshole.

  34. Really Chris, you get that ignorant attitude from your 5th grade education or your ignorant parents. Asshole.

  35. Michael, not everything that says kosher is kosher. I try to only go to places which serve dhabihah, just to be sure.

  36. Michael, not everything that says kosher is kosher. I try to only go to places which serve dhabihah, just to be sure.

  37. ignorance towards other cultures isnt cool chris u should appriatiate some of the important ways of life other cultures have brought to america

  38. ignorance towards other cultures isnt cool chris u should appriatiate some of the important ways of life other cultures have brought to america

  39. Poor n Jewish …. Say what?

  40. Poor n Jewish …. Say what?

  41. Halal is Kosher. I hate to tell you moronic Republicons this, but Muslims and Jews both believe in the SAME FRIGGIN GOD — The God of Moses and the God of Abraham. Now, just get over it! And by the way — JESUS WAS A JEW so really — you need to get a grip on your stupid beliefs!

  42. Halal is Kosher. I hate to tell you moronic Republicons this, but Muslims and Jews both believe in the SAME FRIGGIN GOD — The God of Moses and the God of Abraham. Now, just get over it! And by the way — JESUS WAS A JEW so really — you need to get a grip on your stupid beliefs!

  43. People cant get medical necessary meal adjustment at most hospitals or foodbanks why would taxpayers foot the bill for religious preferences only?

  44. People cant get medical necessary meal adjustment at most hospitals or foodbanks why would taxpayers foot the bill for religious preferences only?

  45. Jibril – I’m Jewish and surprise – not loaded with money. That’s like me calling you a terrorist. You’re not helping the situation with your immature comments.

  46. Jibril – I’m Jewish and surprise – not loaded with money. That’s like me calling you a terrorist. You’re not helping the situation with your immature comments.

  47. There are poor people in every race as there are rich people in every race, as simple as that.

  48. There are poor people in every race as there are rich people in every race, as simple as that.

  49. Chris gennett is an idiot and he needs to learn a thing or 2 or else he will be classified as one for the rest of your life

  50. Chris gennett is an idiot and he needs to learn a thing or 2 or else he will be classified as one for the rest of your life

  51. what’s the problem? why shouldn’t poor Jewish home residents get Kosher meals? anti-Jew haters…

  52. if those meals were Hallal , there would be outrage and investigation ..

  53. if those meals were Hallal , there would be outrage and investigation ..

  54. These types of Medicare supported adult care facilities barely survive financially. There are realities of cost.

  55. These types of Medicare supported adult care facilities barely survive financially. There are realities of cost.

  56. So what? Foods a necessity..

  57. So what? Foods a necessity..

  58. Someone should tell them that Halal = Kosher

  59. Someone should tell them that Halal = Kosher

  60. How could Mitt Romney veto a bill if he’s not president yet?

  61. How could Mitt Romney veto a bill if he’s not president yet?

  62. Buying votes is a time honored practice since time immemorial. Pretending it is an act of compassion is however strictly phony opportunism and one should never forget that. A politicians very first loyalty is to himself. If it were a genuine act of compassion it would NOT be aimed at anyone group in particular. Just saying!

  63. Buying votes is a time honored practice since time immemorial. Pretending it is an act of compassion is however strictly phony opportunism and one should never forget that. A politicians very first loyalty is to himself. If it were a genuine act of compassion it would NOT be aimed at anyone group in particular. Just saying!

  64. It is important that people have the food they are allowed to eat…how silly to deny people what they need to survive just because they are poor. They deserve to have kosher food. You wouldn’t give vegetarians meat so why would you force a religious person to eat food that is unacceptable for them to eat?

  65. It is important that people have the food they are allowed to eat…how silly to deny people what they need to survive just because they are poor. They deserve to have kosher food. You wouldn’t give vegetarians meat so why would you force a religious person to eat food that is unacceptable for them to eat?

  66. We have to get pass our personal bias.

  67. We have to get pass our personal bias.

  68. These men are the 1% we are talking about care only for more money and power, care nothing about American people. Look at their and how they have lived. Selfish.

  69. These men are the 1% we are talking about care only for more money and power, care nothing about American people. Look at their and how they have lived. Selfish.

  70. Ok, first he–Romney–says he doesn’t give a flip for the poor people. Now he wants to provide money for special meals to a particular group. He obviously doesn’t know what he’s doing; why would we even want to consider him for the leader of the free world? if you are going to provide meals to one group, you provide them to all, special, kosher or halal…feed ALL Americans, however they take their food.

  71. Ok, first he–Romney–says he doesn’t give a flip for the poor people. Now he wants to provide money for special meals to a particular group. He obviously doesn’t know what he’s doing; why would we even want to consider him for the leader of the free world? if you are going to provide meals to one group, you provide them to all, special, kosher or halal…feed ALL Americans, however they take their food.

  72. Interesting concept: doubtful if Halal meals would be considered.

  73. Interesting concept: doubtful if Halal meals would be considered.

  74. jews hve actually added things to society and have been in america from the start, WHAT HAVE MUSLIMS EVER DONE EXCEPT DESTROY, NAME ONE THING INVENTED BY A MUSLIM? ONE?

  75. jews hve actually added things to society and have been in america from the start, WHAT HAVE MUSLIMS EVER DONE EXCEPT DESTROY, NAME ONE THING INVENTED BY A MUSLIM? ONE?

  76. ^ Troll up above.

  77. ^ Troll up above.

  78. ^^cannot name one thing invented by a muslim

  79. algebra, medical science, alcohol, algorithm, coffee.. more moron? go get some education @jonathan

  80. Agreed. What happened to all that separation of church and state jazz the libs are always talking about. If Jews can’t afford kosher meals, that’s their problem. Then again, most items on your grocery store shelves are kosher. So right there, a minority is imposing their religion on others. If it were a halal tax on these items, people would be pissed off. Jews have an incredible amount of power in the U.S. More than most people realize.

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