Antisemitism today is widely reported to come from three main sources: the alt-right; the radical Muslim community; and the far left. What is not covered is Black Antisemitism, which does not fit neatly into one of the standard categories.
And it must be discussed, as Black antisemitism is becoming one of the greatest threats to Jews in America.
Understanding Alt-Left Black Antisemitism:
Gentrification, on its face, is purely an economics matter. The change that comes to a poor neighborhood as wealthier residents move in sometimes upsets the dynamic of the existing residents. Rents slowly inch up for apartments and stores, pushing the residents and businesses out in favor of those that could now afford the higher costs. This is true whether the wealthier newcomers are the same ethnic background as current inhabitants or different.
In Jersey City, NJ, where two black people shot up a kosher store killing a police officer and civilians last week, gentrification has been a vocal issue, and it has focused on race, as much as economics.
In April 2019, the President of the NAACP New Jersey State Conference penned a letter to a local New Jersey media outlet. The article chastised the mayor of Jersey City, Steven Fulop to do something about the gentrification of the city where “lower-income African American and Latino families are being particularly threatened with displacement as investment floods in.” That same month, the Institute of the Black World 21st Century met in Newark, NJ, for a weekend “emergency summit on gentrification.” As covered by Brentin Mock in CityLab:
“The emergency is that too many white people have been moving back from wherever they fled to into inner-city neighborhoods that have been culturally and racially defined as black communities for the past few decades. This white invasion is an “insidious onslaught” to African-American life as we know it, as Daniels spelled out in a blog he penned last November, and so walls must be built, or rather, policies must be built to stop the occupation.”
This opinion is not a matter of economics, but one of racial warfare, and it is a belief held by many people in the black community.
Consider the comments of Joan Terrell Paige, a member of the Jersey City Board of Education after the shooting in the city targeting its Jewish residents for slaughter:
“Where was all this faith and hope when Black homeowners were threatened, intimidated, and harassed by I WANT TO BUY YOUR HOUSE brutes of the jewish community?… If we are going to tell a narrative it should begin with TRUTH not more cover up of the truth. Mr. Anderson and Ms. Graham went directly to the kosher supermarket. I believe they knew they would come out in body bags. What is the message they were sending? Are we brave enough to explore the answer to their message? Are we brave enough to stop the assault on the Black communities in America?”
When Terrell Paige was criticized for her antisemitic remarks, people from Al Sharpton’s National Action Network jumped to her defense, saying “How dare they speak out against someone saying how they feel. She said nothing wrong. Everything she said is the truth. So where is this anti-Semitism coming in? I am not getting it.” While the non-black public was aghast that someone would blame the victim for their own demise, the black community was focused on the perceived threat of a “white invasion” threatening the “Black communities in America.”
The Black community argued that the attack on the kosher supermarket wasn’t about hating Jews per se, it was about defending their communities from an “invasion.” It was a defensive action, not an act of persecution.
This is the identical language that progressives use against Israel. The progressives stand against the “insidious onslaught” of Jews coming into “Arab lands,” and want to “stop the occupation” of communities of color by European colonialists. Do the Arabs shoot the Jews dead? Yes, but it’s not based on antisemitism as much as defending their community of color from “too many white people.” The alt-left logic is that the blacks in New Jersey and the Arabs in Jenin would shoot to kill white invaders if they were Polish or Danish, so the fact that they were Jewish is inconsequential.
Progressives believe that there are particular people who deserve land, community, safety and wealth, and they are not wealthy white people. New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio summed up the thinking of his alt-left comrades well in June 2019 when he said “There is plenty of money in this world, and there’s plenty of money in this country, it’s just in the wrong hands. Democrats have to fix that.” Progressives aren’t looking for communities of coexistence, they seek a radical transfer of wealth, property, jobs and “justice” to minorities.
The progressive racist approach to gentrification is clear: they want the politicians to take tax dollars from the wealthy white communities and pour the funds into the poor minority urban communities, however, they don’t want those white people moving alongside them. Say no to Amazon’s 25,000 high-paying jobs if it will disrupt the communities of color (thanks AOC). Claim that Jews in the neighborhood are endangering your own black kids because they’re bringing out the haters. If the politicians fail to stop the “white invasion,” then you cannot blame the black community for rising up and shooting a bunch of white Jews shopping.
Tacitly and/or explicitly, the alt-left finds common cause with people of color who gun down white people in defense of their homogeneous minority community, whether in Jersey City or Jerusalem.
Understanding Racist Black Antisemitism:
Hatred of Jews and Judaism
The “alt-right” is often described as being a bunch of “white supremacists” but can be defined more broadly as people who believe in the racial superiority of their own group.
The alt-Right and the alt-Left share a common goal of exclusion. The alt-Right wants to limit immigration to the United States to countries from Europe to keep it a majority white country, while the alt-Left uses the war on racist gentrification to keep white people out of minority communities. The silent separator of the two extremist groups is that the alt-left wraps itself in a shroud of “justice” since it is advocating for minority groups while the alt-right fights to keep its majority status.
Beyond keeping country and community static, the premise of racism and antisemitism is also central to the alt-right vision.
While many of the black people defending the slaughter of Jews in Jersey City could not see their own antisemitism since they believed they were just defending the culture of their neighborhood, many black people have no qualms about voicing their disgust with white people and Jews.
The Nation of Islam is a notorious antisemitic organization which is headed by the black preacher Louis Farrakhan who loudly smears Jews, Judaism and white people to standing ovations in the Black community. Many African Muslim countries also have cultures of Jew-hatred, as Ayaan Hirsi Ali wrote in the Wall Street Journal in July 2019 about Somalia. ADL polls confirm that European Muslims are two to five times more likely to be antisemitic than Christians and that the Muslims from Africa and the Middle East are the most antisemitic people of all.
Black antisemitism is not limited to Muslims.
The two black murderers who killed people in New Jersey belonged to a fringe group called Black Israelites. They believe that blacks and Latinos are the true “chosen people” mentioned in the bible and that today’s Jews are imposters. The black Israelites view themselves as righteous and superior to white people and Jews.
These various racists and antisemites receive protection from the broad black and progressive communities under the guise of intersectionality. Many black Democratic politicians refuse to denounce Louis Farrakhan as he is considered a voice of empowerment to the black community. The leaders of the Women’s March proudly associated with Farrakhan. The racism and antisemitism of the black alt-right gets excused because they are a minority group, so The New York Times and Don Lemon on CNN will report that “the biggest terror threat in this country is white men,” even while the growth in hate crimes today is being driven by violent black hatred.
Jersey City’s Brooklyn Jews
The Jersey City Massacre deserves some backdrop and context.
Over the past decades, the rental prices in Manhattan became prohibitive for many people so they flooded into cheaper neighborhoods in Brooklyn which were long occupied by a diverse group of people including Chasidic Jews, Pakistani Muslims, Puerto Ricans and others. The gentrification of Brooklyn pushed many of these people to seek cheaper rents in nearby communities.
Jersey City, NJ looked much like Brooklyn twenty years ago with its views of and proximity to Manhattan, but with cheaper rents. Long a home for blacks and Latinos, many of the poorer residents of Brooklyn came to Jersey City as a place near Manhattan which was more affordable.
Chasidic Jews are not like every other group of people seeking more affordable places to live. They not only dress differently, they eat different foods not carried by local establishments, send their children to different schools which teach Jewish studies and need to be within walking distance to a Jewish house of worship. This means that it is difficult, perhaps impossible, for one or two Chasidic families to move to a place without Orthodox Jews. They need to enter a community with a minimum of twenty to fifty families to support basic Jewish and kosher infrastructure.
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