January 20, 2019

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Keith Ellison is Offended (Judean Rose)


Farrakhan: By Tasnim News Agency, CC BY 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=47879606 Ellison: By Michael Hicks (Flickr: img_7947) [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Rep. Keith Ellison (D), the vice chairman of the Democratic National Committee says it is offensive that anyone would ask him to denounce antisemitism, “I got to tell you it is frustrating to be pulled out and be in… and it’s like it’s your daily moment to denounce anti-Semitism. We denounce it. We absolutely denounce it. We think it is reprehensible, murderous, and genocidal. And it offends me that anyone would insist that I do it one more time.”

Oh yeah. Completely offensive. After all, why should the man be repeatedly asked to denounce antisemitism, just because he was in the room with Louis Farrakhan a long time ago er, not so long ago. For instance at the private dinner held by Farrakhan that Ellison attended back in 2013 (along with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani). Not to mention that time Ellison met with Farrakhan in the Nation of Islam leader’s hotel room for a long chat, WAY back in 2016.

Of course, if you ask Ellison, he’ll lieand say he hasn’t met with Farrakhan since 2006, when he first ran for Congress.  

Yes. Ellison has lied and been caught at it, scrambling after the fact and calling his intimate talk with Farrakhan in his hotel room, in 2016, a “chance meeting.”

Just a “chance meeting” with Farrakhan, the guy who said things like, “Jews were responsible for all of this filth and degenerate behavior that Hollywood is putting out, turning men into women and women into men,” and “Let me tell you something, when you want something in this world, the Jew holds the door.”

But what difference does it make what Farrakhan says? Words? They aren’t a danger to anyone. Says Ellison:

“In Charlottesville last year they was marching through town yelling, ‘Jews will not replace us.’ Wasn’t no black people in that crowd.

“I gotta just say this to you. Any form of bigotry at all including antisemitism is going beyond the pale. But let’s keep in mind what is gonna kill somebody. Like what happened to Heather Heyer. Like the threats to synagogues.”

Because expressions of antisemitism? Nope. That’s not the start of anyone actually killing Jews. Right?

But we’re not speaking of Hitler. We’re speaking of the guy Ellison termed a “role model” in columns he wrote in the 80’s and 90’s, before he ever ran for public office (in 2006, around the time he denounced the Nation of Islam, lather, rinse, repeat). Which tells you something about the sincerity of Ellison’s denunciation of antisemitism. Because he’s still hanging with the guy, with Farrakhan. As late as in 2016.
Now what would you think of me if I hung out with Hitler in his hotel room, just by chance? Arafat? Bashar Assad? Stalin? Wouldn’t you question the nature of that meeting, that association? My character??

Of course you would. But if you question the association between Ellison and Farrakhan, it’s a smear. And Ellison? He is frustrated.

“It is frustrating to be pulled out and, it’s like your daily moment to denounce antisemitism.”

The nerve of us. Asking the man to denounce antisemitism, again and again. Well, what does it actually matterthat Ellison had an intimate chat with the man in his hotel room, because Farrakhan is irrelevant. Says Ellison.

“Look, I gotta be honest with you and tell you, this thing about Farrakhan being absolutely radioactive and then trying to connect anyone possible to him and then make themradioactive, is. . . Look, Farrakhan’s organization is tiny, they don’t have any influence, nobody listens to them, they don’t have any answers for anyone. Nobody’s paying any attention to them. I’m telling you, they’re not. I mean, give me credit for leading my life.

“Farrakhan is irrelevant. To any politics. Nobody ca- – is he working on health care, is he working on anything? Is anyone thinking oh yeah, I’m gonna be an antisemite like him. No one is saying that. What I’m telling you is, the only way Farrakhan gets in the news is if someone tries to say, oh this black person whose whole life is dedicated to human rights met him or saw him or was in a room with him. It’s a smear, Man. I’m sorry, it is a smear.”

Irrelevant. Just as Hitler was an irrelevant house painter.

Until he wasn’t.

Now not only are we smearing Ellison and offending him by drawing attention to his association with Farrakhan, but Farrakhan should moreover, according to Ellison, be given a pass for his antisemitism.

Because slavery.

“Let me tell you, here’s the truth of the matter, if we’re more interested in that: Farrakhan is known best for things like the Million Man March, and fiery rhetoric condemning American racism. He’s also well known for his antisemitic scapegoating of the Jewish community. Because you’re talking about people who spent 250 years in slavery, another 100 hundred years in Jim Crow government sponsored segregation and it’s only been around 16 years since anything else has been going on and we still have disparities in every aspect of American life, the black community is susceptible to a person who is going to stand up and say what’s happening to us is wrong.”

Now THAT is interesting. Because Ellison is essentially saying black people get a pass for anti-Jewish bigotry because blacks were enslaved for 250 years followed by 100 years of Jim Crow.

Which is funny.

Because the Jews spent 410 years in slavery, followed by close to 3000 years of persecution which includes the systematic murder of over 6 million of the Jewish people.

And yet in the 1960’s, the Jews were empathetic to the plight of black Americans, helped to form the NAACP, and marched alongside black people in Selma.

No. It’s not slavery or the years of Jim Crow that give black people like Farrakhan a pass for his antisemitism.

Actually, nothing does that.

And frankly, Ellison taking offense at being accused of antisemitism, instead of owning up to it—to the association with the antisemitic Nation of Islam, and its antisemitic leader Farrakhan—is offensive.

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