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This Slate Blogger Just Totally Contradicted Himself

5:33 PM, Aug 5, 2014 • By ETHAN EPSTEIN
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Here, in the parlance of the times, is a “pro-tip.” When attempting to rebut the notion that anti-Semitism in Europe is largely a problem caused by young Muslim men, don’t cite two horrific anti-Semitic atrocities perpetrated by . . . young Muslim men.

That’s what a Slate blogger did today, in a post titled “Europe Has a Serious Anti-Semitism Problem, and It’s Not All About Israel.”

“[European anti-Semitism] isn’t just a problem with young, disaffected Muslim men,” the blogger writes. “After all, the two worst recent incidents of violence against Jews in Europe—the killing of three children and a teacher in a 2012 attack on a Jewish school in Toulouse and the shooting of three people at a Jewish museum in Brussels in May—took place during times when there wasn’t much news coming out of Israel.”

Why is the fact that "news wasn't coming out of Israel" relevant as to whether the attacks were anti-Semitic, or even motivated by the existence of Israel? Oddly, that's not explained. 

But odder still is what follows the blogger writing “after all.” Indeed, it would seem to rebut the central thesis of his post.

After all (to coin a phrase), the 2012 attack on a Jewish school in Toulouse was perpetrated by Mohamed Merah, a 23-year old French Muslim of Algerian origin. (By the way, Merah said he was compelled to gun down children because "The Jews kill our brothers and sisters in Palestine.” Merah evidently did not feel compelled to lay down his arms because there was no "news coming out of Israel" at the time.)

The May shooting in Brussels, meanwhile, was perpetrated by one Mehdi Nemmouche, a Muslim of dual French-Algerian citizenship.

None of this is to suggest that most Muslims are anti-Semitic—or even that Muslims are the only ones responsible for the frightening wave of anti-Semitism that Europe is now playing host to. But if you want to make a case for something, you’re better off not citing directly contradictory evidence, and using it to “bolster” your case.

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