Daily Israel Report

Kosher Food Being Served at White House is 'Insulting'?

MJ Rosenberg, a leftist who was recently ousted from his position at Media Matters, says White House's serving kosher food is 'insulting'
By Rachel Hirshfeld
First Publish: 4/11/2012, 2:17 PM

Kosher oil production
Kosher oil production
Israel news photo: Flash 90

MJ Rosenberg, the radical leftist who was recently ousted from his position at Media Matters for America, is now writing a blog where he continues to propagate his anti-Israel and anti-Jewish views.

He wrote on Monday that the most “ridiculous (and insulting) White House pander came at Hanukah” when kosher food was served at a high-profile event.

He references a New York Times article, which describes “A Lubavitch SWAT team” expunging the kitchen of all traces of non-kosher food, and proclaims that such actions are merely attempts at appeasing Jewish voters, while treating them as if they “just arrived from Poland or Russia.”

“Absurd, offensive and utterly unnecessary,” he exclaims, after providing an excerpt from the article. “The percentage of Jews who require that level of ‘koshering’ is infinitesimal and probably not five of them would be at the White House that night. Surely, they would not have minded eating a nice packaged kosher meal prepared specially for them rather than put the White House out like that.

“But, of course, the White House didn’t do it for them,” he continues. “It did it to impress the same imaginary Jews who will decide to support the president based on such nonsense.”

He goes on to claim that “the same exact impulse that causes the Obamas to blowtorch their ovens to Hassidic standards also leads the administration to be in perpetual suck-up mode to Prime Minister Netanyahu on matters like Iran and the Israeli occupation, matters of life and death."

“Is there an alternative reason for the White House to go to such lengths?,” asks the Elder of Ziyon blog. “Of course there is. It is called hospitality. If a Jewish function is being done at one of the most prestigious addresses in the world, the hosts will naturally do everything they can to make it as inclusive as possible. Not that the guests demanded it- no doubt they would have been quite happy with a packaged meal, as Rosenberg says- but it is something that a thoughtful host, with the resources to do so, will automatically want to do.”

The first completely kosher mean was served at the White House in 2005, during the Bush administration, after kosher and non-kosher food was accidentally mixed up at a dinner the year before.

“The Bush and Obama administrations very thoughtfully decided to create an atmosphere of inclusiveness at their Hanukah parties, where no one feels uncomfortable opening a double-wrapped package of kosher food and leaving aluminum foil all over the table, struggling with plastic silverware to cut overdone beef, while everyone else is eating a gourmet meal,” Elder states. “It is an act of kindness, not of politics.”

President Obama may have, in fact, gone to such lengths in order to win favor in the eyes of his Jewish constituents. However, is the President of the United States not supposed to go to such lengths in order to be as inclusive as possible of all minorities at official White House events? In a country that prides itself on diversity and religious freedom, it remains doubtful as to how Rosenberg can gripe about such measures. As Elder states, “It takes a very special kind of self-hating Jew to consider White House kindness to be ‘offensive’ when the recipients are Jews.”