Was your family involved in the scrap metal industry? How about the Jewish Mafia…You have to hear this story!
Introducing the first Jewish podcast taking back control of the narrative: “Jews control the media”. As a reaction to Nick Cannon and Reverend Farrakhan this past summer, Jake Silberman and Mo Mandel launched a comedy podcast to deal with the realities of antisemitism in the media. This comedy podcast is abrasive, cynical, and full of chutzpah.
Jewish Gangsters from Detroit
On episode 12 of the Jews Control the Media Podcast, Jake and Mo are joined by Comedian and director Mike Young. Originally from Detroit, Mike shares an unbelievable Jewish perspective about growing up near 8 Mile Road and his father’s scrap metal business. He also discusses the Jewish Mafia-connected throughout the country, even in Hollywood.
A Summary without Too Many Spoilers
Mike Young shares his story of growing up throughout different social classes in the city of Detroit in the 80s. He explains how he saw his family move through different housing as his father’s scrap metal business became more and more successful. He lost his father at a very young age, but before he passed, he taught Mike the truth about the family business – cash for copper and everything in between. Mike describes being bullied for being Jewish by a teenager in his neighborhood when he was 9 years old. Once his father heard about what was happening, he made a call. That family moved out of the neighborhood the very next week.
The Jewish Mafia elements of his story are so intertwined in his life and upbringing but completely foreign for many Jewish listeners. You have to listen for the rest, but Mike ended up in LA as a standup comic and gets into an “altercation” with the wrong person. Mike’s Detroit connections helped him deal with a very dangerous and not-your-average-Jewish comedian kind of experience. Let’s just say, all you need to do is make a call.
ChiTribe asked Jake and Mo about their reactions to this episode and the incredible stories Mike shared. Jake, who is a Midwestern Jew, responded how eye-opening this narrative was for him because his own childhood was nothing near gangster. Mo grew up in the forest and related more with the working Jewish experience.
No one was prepared for the mafia.
Jake: Honestly, this episode was fascinating. I mean I am a generation or two removed from this Midwestern story but I appreciate the importance of Jews being seen as other than just wealthy and privileged. For me, it is so important to hear “Oh yeah Jews can be represented through hustling and actual toil!”
As Jews, we feel like the boxes to check are either lawyer or doctor or whatever other profession is an acceptable stereotype. Of course, not all Jews are well-to-do and come from money. Mike represents the blue-collar Jews who work hard and hustle for copper. His father literally put hands-on people who were messing with his kid.
How does your family’s American story relate to ‘Hustling Jews’?
Jake: This story makes me realize how I don’t often think of Jews in this way. My father is a writer in Minnesota and his family owned a book shop in Michigan near Wayne State. This story makes me realize how I don’t often think of Jews in this way. To hear a story about Jews who worked their asses off and fought for what they earned is a good reminder of where we came from.
Jake: The real Jewish immigration stories are dark and grimy. As Jews in America, we defended our own because we had to in order to survive. This was not my experience at all in Minneapolis. I just learned about the pro-Nazi German population in Minneapolis that was. in support of the Third Reich in the 1940s. They tried to organize and the Jews fought back. Just as Mike describes, the Jewish Mafia found out about the meeting, and just went in and cracked skulls.
Mo: I am a Jew who has worked with my hands at a wood mill for the summer driving a forklift. Not your average Jewish experience for a job, but it was not unusual for where I grew up. My dad in particular grew up very blue-collar in a tiny apartment in Queens and his family and a lot of his cousins still live in that building today.
It’s important to remember that every community that comes to America takes its turn up the ladder and Jews are still working their way up the ladder throughout the country. I feel like this connects us more deeply with the true American experience.
Biggest Takeaways about Hard Working Jews
Jake: The message is clear “Don’t F%^& with the Jews, we don’t mess around” and that is so cool.
Mo: The LA fight story he told truly made me realize that the Jewish mafia is not just a thing of the past. I had no idea.