Dear Friends and Patriots,
“When I wake up, I’m going ‘death con 3’ On JEWISH PEOPLE.”
The tidal wave from this infamous October 9 tweet by Kanye West, aka Ye, continues to crash the cultural shoreline. Twitter locked him out of his account. Adidas, which has partnered with Kanye on his Yeezy brand, cut ties with the billionaire entertainer and fashion mogul. Other business partners have done likewise.
Some have dismissed Kanye’s comments as the rants of a person with serious mental health issues.
Conservative commentator Candace Owens gave a free pass to Kanye altogether, saying his tweet was not antisemitic at all.
“If you are an honest person, you did not think this tweet was antisemitic,” Candace said on October 10 on her Daily Wire show. “You did not think that he wrote this tweet because he hates or wants to genocide Jewish people. This does not represent the beginning of the Holocaust. If you’re an honest person you will admit that.”
Since 2002, Proclaiming Justice to The Nations has fought antisemitism and lies about Israel at home and coast to coast. This has meant speaking out against the Boston Mapping Project, which targeted Jewish organizations supporting “the colonization of Palestine,” although most are apolitical and focused on the religious, social and educational life of the Jewish people in Boston. It has continued by exposing the restriction on Jewish leaders speaking to student organizations at Berkeley Law and bringing attention to the distribution of antisemitic literature in a peaceful Nashville suburb.
As I have learned through many trials, there is nothing innocent, reasonable or understandable about antisemitism. I was reminded of that at a recent Tea Party meeting. During the Q&A after I spoke, one couple stood up and began attacking me, saying the Jews controlled the media and Christians think they have to support Israel because of the scripture that says, “I will bless those that bless you and curse him who curses you.” They kept up the assault, upset that I called them out as peddling antisemitic propaganda.
As I endured this tirade of anti-Jewish tropes, I was reminded of the propaganda perpetrated by Nazi Germany in the 1940s. I was shocked, saddened, and disturbed. But it was also a reminder that there is no such thing as “acceptable” antisemitism.
I understand that Kanye has struggled with his mental health, but that does not give him, or anyone else, a free pass to say whatever they want. There is a powerful and dangerous downhill effect of statements from someone with Kanye’s status and platform.
And while his friends and critics play out the implications of his words on the Internet, the fact remains that hateful comments from the most influential have a real and toxic effect on the local level. And it’s our Jewish friends, neighbors and colleagues who pay the price.
I am fully aware that not all Jews share my conservative social and biblical stances, but supporting the Jewish people is not a political position for me, but a deeply moral one. The Jewish people are the “Apple of God’s eye”; his chosen people. They are the people who brought us salvation. As a matter of conscience, we should care when hatred is circulated in any form by anyone regarding the Jews.
We should stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters and speak against slander and lies with every means available—on texts, emails, letters to the editor and social media. We should write them, call them, or have lunch with them, affirm our care and respect for them and also denounce antisemitism clearly and strongly. Their safety is at stake as is the future of our great nation.
Fortunately for me, the leader of the Tea Party group asked the couple to leave and denounced their antisemitic comments. One thing is for certain, the rise of antisemitism is not only infiltrating the church but also conservative groups who attract far-right antisemites.
To schedule an interview with Laurie Cardoza Moore, president of Proclaiming Justice to The Nations, please contact Clem Boyd, Director of Public Relations at 724.930.4003.