Quite a few of Jeffrey Salkin's blog posts have been loaded with all sorts of ridiculous self-serving crap. His recent post, "Say it ain’t so, Bernie!", was particularly irritating. All too often when someone points out how full of shit pieces like this are they get accused of being anti-semitic. Why? Why isn't this viewed the other way around. Salkin seems annoyed that Bernie is not being a good representative of Judaism despite the fact that Sanders has never identified himself as religious. He has identified himself as culturally Jewish, which I'll come back to later. Sanders is running for President, a secular leader. What his religion may or may not be should be irrelevant. Not to Salkin. He seems to think it's perfectly fine to impose his religious standards on someone else. That the religion in question happens to be Judaism is also irrelevant. If a candidate was born to Baptist parents does that mean they should be hounded by another Baptist if they choose not to practice that specific denomination, or any sect/denomination at all? Why should that be seen as a factor in any profession they choose?
Personally I find the "culturally ____ (fill in your faith of choice)" nonsensical. So what if you grew up in a culture saturated by Christianity, Judaism, or whatever? Do you believe it now? Are you practicing it now? It's a cop out. It loans respectability to something that hasn't really earned it. After all, if it was actually worthwhile you wouldn't need the adjective "culturally" before the term itself. You would simply be X. Bernie Sanders is not practicing Judaism. So whatever he may think about Judaism, I see no reason to assume he owes that faith anything. More importantly, as a candidate for the highest elected office he should be expected to serve all US citizens equally. So, no, Jeffrey Salkin, you do not merit any special attention or treatment despite your insistence on it. You are not better than the rest of us. The very notion that Sanders owes you or any others who are practicing Judaism is arrogant, hypocritical, selfish, tribalistic, bigoted, and despicable.