I’m not yelling; I’m making a point!
Posted on February 27, 2011 - 23 Adar I 5771 by EditorShalom and welcome to the tribe. Enjoy your visit. Better still become a member of the tribe and subscribe
The news about British fashion mogul John Galliano who may face charges over claims of assault and racial abuse of a Jewish woman and Charlie Sheen’s rants against Chuck Lorre referring to him as Chaim Levine , calling him a “clown” and a “stupid, stupid little man and a p**sy punk” have been well and truly been covered by the news media and gossip mags.
Galliano who is alleged to have turned to a woman,at a Paris bar, sitting at the next table and ranted: “Dirty Jew, you should be dead.”
is certainly taking heat for a more obvious manifestation of some underlying anti-Semitism. While Sheen’s tirade is perhaps a far more subtle undertone ,one could be forgiven for perhaps being labeled a little overly paranoid in assessing his remarks.Read Brad Hirschfield’s article in the Washington Post. Sheen however obviously holds no love for Chuck Lorre.
That there is an underlying anti-semitism that pervades nearly all levels of society should be of no surprise to anyone who is Jewish. It only makes the headlines when people of some newsworthiness are caught in the act. The danger is always that others might see the constant vigilance and subsequent castigation and or punishment as” Jews always complaining”
The more interesting story however that comes out of the Sheen saga is the spotlight on Lorre ( Chaim Levine).
the vibe I got from him was one of a menschy, thoughtful, self-critical guy. And if you read the vanity cards at the end of “Big Bang Theory” and “Two and a Half Men,” the portrait that emerges is one of a middle-aged Jewish comedy writer struggling with work, life and dating. And until Sheen’s meltdown, Lorre believed that no one was reading them—save for the die-hard fans who record the shows and freeze-frame at the exact second the card is visible (they’re also collected online atchucklorre.com, stretching back to his “Dharma & Greg” days).
The vanity cards, which even I as an avid watcher of the program never realised were there, are sometimes a unique insight into the mind and world of Levine. In a card written from Israel on Feb 7th Levine says “I didn’t realize how much my double helix yearned to be around similar strands.”
Giving us insight into his Jewish identity, Lorre continues: “Why have I spent a lifetime moving away from that group? How did Chaim become Chuck? How did Levine become Lorre? The only answer I come up with is this: When I was a little boy in Hebrew school the rabbis regularly told us that we were the chosen people. That we were God’s favorites. Which is all well and good except that I went home, observed my family and, despite my tender age, thought to myself, “bull$#*!.”
Wills also in another article Catching up with Wolowitz writes about Levine’s other shows and how his Jewishness and family life have transposed into other characters in the series Big Bang Theory.
Perhaps the most telling insight and possibly the basis for Sheens’ character is the card titled HOW TO CREATE A HIT SITCOM
A simple, step-by-step guide to prime time success.
Levine says of Jewish families
“Things are loud in a Jewish household. Conversations are up here,” Lorre said, lifting his hand above his head, “they’re pitched pretty high. That’s just the way we talk. Other people go, ‘Why are you yelling?’ I’m not yelling; I’m making a point!
I will leave you with a quote from Brad Herschfield’s article
As my great-grandparents would have said, “we should be so lucky to live in a world where using someone’s Hebrew name counts as anti-Semitism.”