Anti-Semitism Resolution Reveals Deep Divide on Israel

Jeremy Binckes
Mar 7, 2019 - 5:00
Anti-Semitism Resolution Reveals Deep Divide on Israel

This week, House Democrats planned to introduce a resolution on anti-Semitism that was seen as a rebuke of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.). The idea of Omar’s party reprimanding one of its own would have been wondrous for conservatives who seemingly want to label Omar as an anti-Semite for her opinions on Israel’s foreign and domestic policies, while at the same time fracturing the progressive wing of the Democratic Party. The working text of the resolution called for a...

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3 Replies to “Anti-Semitism Resolution Reveals Deep Divide on Israel”

  1. “But labeling Omar an anti-Semite because she is vocal about Israel’s domestic and foreign policies allows conservatives to claim that there are bad actors on both sides of the spectrum.” This is one of the things that is so maddening to me! The other is the nearly complete lack of support from Democrats (exceptions are Harris, Warren and Sanders). Lastly, I want a discussion of how to appropriately criticize another nation or government without being accused of anti-Semitism.

  2. Brown and visibly Muslim speaking out against Israel. The Republicans could not have wished for a better opportunity to smear her. They were looking for something to use to try to bring down her character and they found it with her tweet

  3. People – especially elected officials and those in the public eye – should try their utmost to be careful in this most tricky of quagmires. There are so many traps to fall into – and some fall into them truly unwittingly when the topic is race/bigotry. (It’s every bit as tricky as the relations between men and women in a sexually open society). Being against the policies of the Israeli government is not the same as being anti-Israeli; being against the shameful actions of the now-indicted Bibi Netanyahu does not make one anti-semitic; condemning the ownership of politicians by a lobbyist that happens to be buying influence for one political faction in Israel is not displaying anti-semitism. Yes, our ears need to be attuned to phrases that strive to fly under our radar and amplify our innate bigotry, but all negative phrases about Israel are not phrases against Jews. The political dialogue within Israel is relatively free of the toxic miasma that impedes true discussion in the United States. Being against Republican policies is not the same as hating Republicans; abhorring the tactics of the IRA is not the same as being anti-Irish; despising the comments about Jews in ovens by Louis Farrakhan does not make one a racist. If we all tone down the rhetoric and think carefully before we speak, we might be able to do the hard work of truly living well in this great multi-cultural country of ours. Omar made a great point about AIPAC, but unfortunately undercut and weakened her point by using a derogatory slang for dollars – benjamins. The press and the entire society has a hair trigger when it comes to sussing out words that offend us. Yes, the trigger is calibrated too high and yes, the constant rhetoric is too loud and too incessant. But such is our cultural reality at the moment, and it would behoove us all to think carefully before we speak. We desperately need to find the language of healing and cooperation and lose the language of division.

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