White ethnics—Irish, Italians, Jews—were long excluded from whiteness on the grounds that they were racially inferior, but they were integrated into a more inclusive redefinition of whiteness post-World War II.
I used to reply to this:
Indeed, who can forget that stunning scene in Gone With the Wind when Scarlett O'Hara's Irish last name is accidentally revealed, and thus she is immediately sold into slavery.
But, true believers in the wisdom of Noel Ignatiev always reply to the effect: "Hey, dumbass, don't you know Gone With the Wind is fiction?!"
(Benjamin was the second Jewish Senator. The first was his first cousin once removed, David Levy Yulee of Florida, who was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1845 and resigned in 1861. He served in the Congress of the Confederacy until being imprisoned by the victorious Union forces in 1865.)
He was a noted advocate of the interests of the South. According to the author Carl Sandburg, the abolitionist Benjamin Wade of Ohio said the Southern senator was "a Hebrew with Egyptian Principles", as he represented slaveholders. Benjamin replied, "It is true that I am a Jew, and when my ancestors were receiving their Ten Commandments from the immediate Deity, amidst the thundering and lightnings of Mt. Sinai, the ancestors of my opponent were herding swine in the forests of Great Britain."
‘Yes, I am a Jew, and while the ancestors of the right honorable gentleman were brutal savages in an unknown island, mine were priests in the temple of Solomon.’”