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Democratic Coalition’s politician on ‘caftan Jews’

February 12th, 2018

Right-wing pundits lambast a Democratic Coalition luminary for his controversial comments on atheism and Orthodox Jews.

Magyar Hírlap unearthed a Facebook comment by the Democratic Coalition’s István Vágó in which the well-known former TV quiz host criticized the EMIH Unified Hungarian Jewish CongregationVágó accused the EMIH of harming the interests of Hungarian Jews by cooperating with the government which, according to Vágó, fails to distance itself from anti-Semitic groups. Vágó notes that he is an atheist and does not care about any God, and adds that ‘I cannot bear the sight of Jews in hats, caftans and with payotsnor do I fee the least feel sense of belonging to them’. In a more recent comment, Mr Vágó said that his anti-religious comment had no anti-Semitic implications, adding that his own mother was a Holocaust survivor.

In Figyelő, Attila Ditzendy dismisses Mr Vágó’s claim that his words on ‘caftan Jews’ are only anti-religious but not anti-Semitic. The conservative commentator adds that Mr Vágó has insulted not only Jews, but all religious Hungarians. In conclusion, Ditzendy wonders if the Democratic Coalition’s politician wants to woo the supporters of the Jobbik party with such language.

On Mandiner, Áron Copf thinks that Mr Vágó’s statement is a good example of left-wing intellectuals’ contempt for religious people. The conservative blogger does not find Mr Vágó’s sentences anti-Semitic – only primitive and tasteless.

In Heti Válasz András Stumpf ponders aloud whether since Mr Vágó has the right to publicly express his dislike of Jews in caftans, perhaps Hungarians disturbed by transsexuals can also express their views in a similar vein. The conservative journalist likens Mr Vágó’s statement to the Bolshevik doctrine of combative atheism. In conclusion, Stumpf finds it a source of relief that Mr Vágó’s Democratic Coalition has no chance of governing Hungary any time soon.

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