ONE MAN’S OPINION-American Jews have a Trump problem. When Trump appeared unsteady in support of the State of Israel, it was easier for them to oppose Trump’s vilifying strangers in a strange land, e.g. rousing up hatred of Mexicans from the “three Mexican countries,” per Fox News, by calling the Mexicans, “drug dealers, criminals and rapists.”
With Trump’s separating babies and toddlers from their families, with his support of very fine Nazis’ chanting, “Jews shall not replace us,” and with his use of code words like “internationalist” and “Globalist” for Jews, American Jews have had no reason to embrace him.
Under the radar, however, significant countervailing forces had been at work. The Democrat Party has been turning increasingly anti-Semitic. The far Left has always been anti-Semitic and those Jews who said “No enemies to the Left” were fooling themselves. The threat, however, used to be negligible.
Tremors in California
Troublesome rumblings appeared in California in 2015, when the State Supreme Court adopted the position that judges had the right to discriminate against troublemaker Jews who “refused Jesus Christ.” The organized community looked the other way. After all, what does it matter if a few rabblerousing Jews are put in their place? The machers in the community were the big developer donors. The organized community’s bread was buttered on only one side.
As statisticians will tell us, there are always outliers -- anomalies so freakish that they should be ignored. With the ability of outliers to become legal precedents, ignoring judicially approved religious and ethnic bigotry can be dangerous. Soon the California Commission on Judicial Performance accepted the bigotry and then the State Bar fully and vigorously championed it. Still, people were silent. After all, Martin Niemoller was referring only to Germany in the 1930s. (Yes, sarcasm)
Post-election, the Trump’s bird calls emboldened the White is Right contingent. American Jews had to feel very unwelcome in the GOP despite exceptions like Sheldon Adelson. One wonders the extent to which Charlottesville led Nancy Pelosi to believe that she could advance her Group Rights Identity Politics agenda by making the Democrat Party safe for anti-Semites. After Charlottesville, one could reason that Jews had no alternative. As Pelosi saw with Blacks and Gays, GOP racism and bigotry left some groups with no safe haven.
And the Beat Goes on Drums Keep Pounding a Rhythm to the Brain
Meanwhile back in California, Pelosi familial relative and political cohort newly elected Governor Gavin Newsom refused to even discuss stopping the state’s endorsement of official anti-Semitism on the grounds that the State Constitution art VI sec 10 gave the judiciary the right to be anti-Semitic. Of course, if a bigoted judge bases his decisions on religious prejudice, people are bound to follow it – that’s how the law works.
When good people who should have known better gave no kick back to judicial anti-Semitism, it is likely that Pelosi realized that anti-Semitism could benefit her nationally. So, she appointed an established anti-Semite, Rep Ilhan Omar, to the prestigious House Foreign Affairs Committee and sat back as bigotry took its course. Not only did Pelosi protect the anti-Semite, she also went a step further to convert the House condemnation of anti-Semitism into a giant official step forward of the Equivalency Doctrine, i.e. anti-Semitism including violence against Jews may not be condemned without also pretending that Jews are guilty of the same behavior.
Since the first flap over Rep Omar’s anti-Semitism, Pelosi and Gov. Newsom have been consistent in their support for official anti-Semitism. What are the Jews going to do – leave the Dem Party? When Rep. Omar denigrates the 9/11 murders as “some people did something” in the same sentence that she blatantly lies, saying that CAIR was formed in response to 9/11, it is time for everyone to admit that Group Rights is bringing internecine warfare upon us all. Jews will suffer more than others since both the White is Right folks and the Democrats target Jews. Nonetheless, the biggest loser will be the nation itself. Group rights, including judicial anti-Semitism, is a repudiation of the core values on which the nation is founded.
Meanwhile, Trump Was Doing Positive Things
(1) He actually moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, (2) he stopped U.S. payments to the Abbas government since the money was being diverted to the families of terrorists who had murdered Jews – Israeli and American, (3) he supported annexation of the Golan Heights, as well as (4) adopting a harder line on Iran. Based on these tangible steps, Trump now promises a Middle East plan which does not have a two-state solution, but which seems to be supported by many Arab countries.
Thus, we American Jews find ourselves this Passover season in a sticky wicket. How do we play this deadly serious political game of life and death for us, for immigrants, and for the nation? Do we continue to cower in silence while Newsom and Pelosi advance their anti-Semitic group rights agenda? Do we remain silent while Trump horribly abuses strangers in a strange land? Shall we remain silent as he trashes transgender people?
What excuse do we have to stick with a party that pits one group against another and encourages anti-Semitism? Can we celebrate the Seder while supporting a man who gleefully abuses the most defenseless among us? Oh, that an outstretched hand would deliver us from this dilemma, but that ain’t gonna happen.
The saying which is usually attributed to Edmund Burke, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing,” was wrong. People who do nothing in the face are evil are not good. Cowardice is not a virtue.
(Richard Lee Abrams is a Los Angeles attorney and a CityWatch contributor. He can be reached at: Rickleeabrams@Gmail.com. Abrams’ views are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of CityWatch.) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.