On Shaming an Anti-Semite

Lisa Marie Mendez, a University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) student and employee at the UCLA Medical Center, has made her extreme distaste for “fucking Zionist pigs” crystal clear this past month in her rant against Jews on Facebook.

Source: A UCLA Student Working At David Geffen Medical Center Told Jews To “Get The F*** Out of Here.” When Will UCLA Kick Her The Hell Out? | Daily Wire

Given how disgusting and abhorrent as this angry rant is, I am as tempted as many others who have read it to visit personal retribution on the individual who spewed forth these anti-Semitic sentiments. (And let us be clear – while the words may be couched in anti-Israel rhetoric, they quickly become anti-Semitic.) But I believe to do would be a bad idea for three reasons.
First, the more I read her words, I am stunned that they come from the hand of an apparently intelligent young woman who has earned the right to study at one of the world’s foremost institutions of higher learning, and work at one of the nation’s best medical facilities. The only conclusion I can reach is that Ms. Mendez is a deeply angry, deeply wounded young woman. A retributive campaign against her would only make her more aggrieved. It would neither heal her nor make her reconsider the error of her beliefs. What is worse, trying to get this young lady fired or expelled flies in the face of the core values of Torah that compel us to the mercy, justice, and compassion of Hashem. In pursuing personal retribution against her, we would fail as Jews.
Second, the young lady has the right guaranteed under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to express her beliefs, irrespective of how hateful and stupid they are. What is more, she is a student at a major public university, and we should always work to ensure that those venues remain an especially open and free marketplace of ideas. As neanderthal and rodent-level as anti-Semitism and Jew-baiting are, they are laid most bare as foolish in an open community of scholars. As Jews, we must look to history and recognize that we have thrived in the Diaspora primarily in those places where intellectual expression was least constrained. We cannot defend the right of the talented and learned Mayim Bialik if we do not defend the rights of her detractor, Ms. Mendez. In pursuing personal retribution against her, we would fail as Americans.
Third, the righteous fight against defamation must never sink to the level of a witch-hunt. The most effective approach to anti-Semitism is outreach and discussion first and foremost. In fact, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL,) in its response to this specific situation, sought assurances from both the university Ms. Mendez attended and the hospital for which she worked that they did not share her sentiments, and in fact sought to distance themselves from them. They ascertained that the student did not allow her beliefs to infect her work and devolve into discrimination or hateful acts. We should take it no further.
This is not to say that we should moderate or cease or active opposition to anti-Semitisim in all of its forms. It is, rather, to say that we must do so with compassion, with a respect for free speech, and an unyielding determination to draw a line between seething hatred and acts of discrimination or violence.
Ms. Mendes should be ashamed of the words she has written, and I suspect that the day will come when she regrets her words as importune or even unjust. But that is a very different thing than saying that she should be shamed. Public shaming only stokes the fires of hatred and resentment.
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What Happened to a Moderate Muslim at Vassar

The BDS liberals at Vassar, like the Party in George Orwell’s 1984, want you to imagine a vision of the future where they stamp their boots on an idealistic, human face.

It is ominous that Vassar College does not allow a healthy intellectual debate to flourish on campus, which requires even more persistent care-taking than the weeds on the campus lawn. Students should be given space to grow on campus, but they must not be allowed to grow so out of control that they conceal those who bring vandalism and handsaws into Main Building, and with them, the seeds of academic destruction.

Source: Pro-Israel Muslim Vassar student’s lonely fight to defend Israel – Anti BDS, BDS News, Boycotts, Divestments and Sanctions (BDS) – SPME Scholars for Peace in the Middle East

Extremely sad. We have now added to the college checklist for my son “a verifiable commitment to academic freedom and freedom of speech.” Those things are more important than food selection in the cafeteria and rock-climbing walls.

Austria Says it is Legal to Call for Jews to be Killed

Prosecutor rules that Austrian hair stylist’s anti-Semitic Facebook posts are a legitimate way to criticize Israel.

Source: Austrian prosecutor: Call to kill Jews is legal criticism of Israel – Diaspora – Jerusalem Post

For most of my life I dared to hope that in the aftermath of the greatest racial atrocity in the history of mankind, Europe had risen above its Jew-hatred.

I was, apparently, wrong. And that hatred does not stop with fringe groups. It reaches right into the heart of Europe’s elite, into the offices of the leaders of Austria’s judicial system.

Austria has now added itself to the list of countries I am unable to visit, especially with my family. And I must plead with my fellow Jews who are living there: run, haverim. Take your families and all you can carry with you. Leave and do not look back. Darkness is descending upon Austria again.

BDS has become an Anti-Semitic Movement

JNS.org – Last month, in a breathtaking display of anti-Semitism reminiscent of Nazi Germany, members of the student government at South Africa’s Durban University of Technology (DUT) called for the expulsion of all Jewish students from their campus. The very next day, halfway around the world, the student government at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) engaged in a similar display of anti-Jewish bigotry, nearly denying a highly qualified young woman a position on the student judiciary board after four student representatives […]

Source: The BDS Movement’s Long Trail of Anti-Semitism | Jewish & Israel News Algemeiner.com

There may be quite well-intentioned people in the movement who are genuinely concerned about specific policies of the Netanyahu administration who hate neither Israel or Jews. But we cannot for their sake tolerate a movement that has become the vehicle for people who would see Israel destroyed and Jews made pariahs.

BDS has become a global vector of anti-Semitism. It is time for those in the movement who respect the right of Israel to exist and who are not anti-Semites to leave. Continuing to identify with this festering pustule of hatred is to become hatred itself.