Harvey Weinstein, Sabbatai Zevi and Tikun Olam
Short Comment by Gilad Atzmon
The Daily Mail reports that “disgraced Harvey Weinstein believes he is a saviour who was born to 'change the world' by taking the fall for sexual assaults.”
Sources close to the shamed producer said he has resigned himself to being punished over the allegations 'as a martyr for social change.’
Weinstein could be seen as a a follower of Rabbi Sabbatai Zevi, who declared himself the Messiah in 1666. Zevi proclaimed that redemption was available through acts of sin and he amassed a following of over one million passionate believers, about half the world's Jewish population during the 17th century. The shift from total sinner into the new messiah figure was certainly rapid for serial predator Weinstein. But this shouldn’t take us by surprise. Weinstein's regard for himself as a ‘martyr for social change’ is consistent with Tikun Olam – the misguided Jewish belief that it is down to the Jews to repair the world.
I guess we are witnessing a radical shift in the world of criminal defence. Jeffrey Epstein could just claim that in retrospective, he helped to raise awareness of child prostitution. Israel can say in its defence that its history of crimes against humanity made it into a martyr for social justice proving how lethal choseness and chosenism are. But, could Jimmy Saville do the same? What about Stalin? Let us push it even further, could Hitler apply the same strategy in his defence? Is he eligible to become an anti racism martyr? I’ll let you ponder that one…