Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Last week I had the chance to catch up with a group of pretty great people I hadn't seen in a while. I was feeling a bit under the weather, so I mostly just listened as I threw back glasses of Sherry (I was testing the idiotic hypothesis that sherry is good for a cold, which, of course, it most certainly is not).

Anyway this friend of mine was talking about a term that he and some other people had coined to describe a maddening category of people that we come across all the time. The label for this group is "Progressive Until Palestine" or PUP for short. These are the people who speak up against injustice, call for respecting human rights, rage against racist ideas and policies, and take all sorts of progressive positions until you mention Palestine or Palestinians. And that is when you are in for a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde transformation right before your eyes. If you are lucky, the PUP will turn stone silent and cut short whatever bleeding heart liberal act they were putting on. Most likely, however, the PUP will turn rabid, spew all kinds of racist and inaccurate "facts", and probably accuse you of a few things to boot.

Fortunately, the PUP phenomena seems to be endemic pretty much to the USA and a few other places here and there. But there certainly are a lot of people who are PUPs, and they need to be confronted about their vile hypocrisy, particularly when they are figures of some public standing like prominent intellectuals, activists, or what have you. Who knows, maybe I will keep a list of such people and post it on this blog in the hopes that it will somehow contribute to holding such people accountable for their dangerous sanctimony.