Michelle Alexander, a new New York Times columnist, was given front page Sunday Review real estate for her 2,300-word screed offensively linking civil rights hero Martin Luther King Jr. to the Palestinian cause against Israel, in “Time to Break the Silence on Palestine -- Martin Luther King Jr. spoke bravely on Vietnam. We must do the same to meet this moral challenge.”
After a history lesson of MLK’s activism against the Vietnam War, she voiced the hope that she and others would be as brave and not silent on “one of the great moral challenges of our time: the crisis in Israel-Palestine.”
Both Congress and college campuses have been complicit, evidently, in squelching anti-Israel views (could have fooled us).
....Our elected representatives, who operate in a political environment where Israel's political lobby holds well-documented power, have consistently minimized and deflected criticism of the State of Israel, even as it has grown more emboldened in its occupation of Palestinian territory and adopted some practices reminiscent of apartheid in South Africa and Jim Crow segregation in the United States.
Similarly, many students are fearful of expressing support for Palestinian rights because of the McCarthyite tactics of secret organizations like Canary Mission, which blacklists those who publicly dare to support boycotts against Israel, jeopardizing their employment prospects and future careers.
Canary Mission actually finds anti-Semitic postings by college students on Twitter and spotlights them.
And so, if we are to honor King’s message and not merely the man, we must condemn Israel’s actions: unrelenting violations of international law, continued occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, home demolitions and land confiscations. We must cry out at the treatment of Palestinians at checkpoints, the routine searches of their homes and restrictions on their movements, and the severely limited access to decent housing, schools, food, hospitals and water that many of them face.
Alexander attempted to argue that somehow anti-Israel voices don’t get time in the media, which is instantly undermined by a perusal of a random issue of the New York Times.
Not so long ago, it was fairly rare to hear this perspective. That is no longer the case.
After one “by the way” paragraph that admitted anti-Semitism was a real thing, she cheered the virulently anti-Israel and often anti-Semitic “BDS” movement.
Even in Congress, change is on the horizon. For the first time, two sitting members, Representatives Ilhan Omar, Democrat of Minnesota, and Rashida Tlaib, Democrat of Michigan, publicly support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement....
None of this is to say that the tide has turned entirely or that retaliation has ceased against those who express strong support for Palestinian rights....
....In November, Marc Lamont Hill was fired from CNN for giving a speech in support of Palestinian rights that was grossly misinterpreted as expressing support for violence. Canary Mission continues to pose a serious threat to student activists.
And just over a week ago, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute in Alabama, apparently under pressure mainly from segments of the Jewish community and others, rescinded an honor it bestowed upon the civil rights icon Angela Davis, who has been a vocal critic of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians and supports B.D.S.
But that attack backfired....and an alternative event is being organized to celebrate her decades-long commitment to liberation for all.
Tamar Sternthal at Camera knocked down Alexander’s mythology of victimology:
But Lamont Hill was fired not for calling for his support of “Palestinian rights,” but for calling for “resistance,” which in the parlance of Hamas and other Palestinian terror groups is a clear call for violence including for terrorism. He also called for “a free Palestine from the river to the sea,” which is tantamount to the elimination of the Jewish state. Alexander’s depiction of Angela Davis’ anti-Israel activism is likewise a whitewash. Davis has called for the release of all Palestinian prisoners, including terrorists convicted of multiple murders, such as the aforementioned Marwan Barghouti....
Also: Alexander’s description of Davis as having a “decades-long commitment to liberation for all” is a sad joke, even on the tilted leftist terms of what “liberation” might mean, given her vengeful hostility toward political prisoners of the Soviet regime.
Simon Plosker at Honest Reporting pointed out a weird detail regarding Alexander’s mention of the “well-documented power” of the Israel lobby: “At this time of writing, the hyperlinked source is, believe it or not, the homepage of the Washington Post.”