We are being subjected to an explosion of Jew hatred and anti-Jewish vitriol and demeaning rhetoric from black public personalities. The outbreak is, to put it mildly, deeply disturbing.
This Jew hatred – spouted by prominent figures, ranging from the world of sports to music icons to television hosts – has, thankfully, been decried by other prominent black voices and condemned.
Two great NBA legends, Charles Barkley and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, are among those who lashed out at those who were using their public positions to spread Jew hatred. In a 78-second video that was posted on Twitter to @NBAonTNT, Barkley called them out by name.
This is the transcript of Barkley’s video:
“Listen, DeSean Jackson, Stephen Jackson, Nick Cannon, Ice Cube. Man, what the hell are y’all doing?
“Y’all want racial equality. We all do. I don’t understand how insulting another group helps our cause. And the only person who called y’all on it was Kareem [Abdul-Jabar]. We can’t allow black people to be prejudiced, also.
Especially if we’re asking for white folks to respect us, give us economic opportunity and things like that. I’m so disappointed in these men. I don’t understand how you beat hatred with more hatred. That stuff should never come up in your vocabulary, and it should never come up in your heart. I don’t understand it.
“I’m never gonna accept it, and I’m asking you guys, I’m begging you guys, man, you guys are famous, you’ve got a platform. We’ve gotta do better, man. I want allies.
I don’t want to alienate anybody and to take shots at the Jewish race, the white race. I just don’t like it ’cause it’s not right and I had to call them on it ’cause it’s really – it’s really been on my heart.”
Thank you, Charles Barkley and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
MANY OF these Jew-hating canards can be traced back to the man once known as Louis X, today more well renowned and recognized as the Reverend Louis Farrakhan Sr. For those who follow headline news – enough said. Farrakhan, who identifies as a religious leader and political activist, has been on the front lines of Jew hatred for decades.
He draws on the basest and ugliest of hatreds and spreads them as gospel. He points his finger at the Jew and says Jews are the reason for the tribulations, the troubles, and the suffering, of blacks.
He disenfranchises the Jew. He defrocks their chosenness and elevates blacks in their stead. Farrakhan’s popularity, which has soared, continues to rise.
Farrakhan’s anti-Jew influence in the black world is echoed by another, very influential and fiercely vocal group. They are the Black Hebrew Israelites. And they are a violent group who, like Farrakhan, believe that today’s Jews are not the true Jews. They believe that blacks are the true Jews.
This group is not to be confused with the original Black Hebrews. The Black Hebrew Israelites are very different from Black Hebrews. The original Black Hebrews were not violent. They never preached displacing traditional Jews and Judaism.
They believed and they taught that they were part of the Ten Lost Tribes that were split, taken into captivity and lost. That belief, by the way, is one of the historical stories used to explain the Jews of Ethiopia.
Black Hebrew Israelites and Farrakhan do not believe that they are the lost tribes. They believe that they are the entire 12 tribes. They believe that they are the original Jews. They argue that everyone from the ancient Middle East was black – including, of course, Moses and Jesus.
From this belief emerges a tremendous disdain for what they call “white Jews.” The Black Hebrew Israelites claim to be authentic. Like Farrakhan and his minions, they lash out at traditional Jews and the traditional Jewish community.
Heidi Beirich studies extremism and extremist groups. She leads the Intelligence Project for the Southern Poverty Law Project and is highly respected for her expertise. According to Beirich, “Black Hebrew Israelites claim to be from the Twelve Tribes of Israel, who will one day be given dominion by God to rule over the Earth.”
“They believe that Jewish people are ‘fake Jews,’ impostors who will be supplanted by them in the future.... They also believe that God will make whites, who these groups consider spawns of the devil, into their slaves, forced into eternal servitude.”
IT IS not new to find that there are people, usually small groups of people, who believe crazy ideas. Spin-offs and extremist groups have always existed. Farrakhan, for example, has been around for decades, and his message has been consistent throughout the years.
What is new and what is troubling is that these groups are growing. Especially these groups of Jew haters. In the Information Age we live in, their message is so easy to find. Just click on YouTube and choose which video of Jew hatred you want to watch or listen to. Established black leaders are publicly tweeting and spouting their extremist messages. Most galling and incredulous at the same time is that when challenged, many of them do not even consider their rhetoric to be Jew hatred. They see it as truth. They argue that the truth can’t be hateful and that the truth is not racist.
They echo a message originally delivered by Yasser Arafat. The message goes like this: We can’t be antisemites because we, ourselves, are semites.
It is Jew hatred. And they are antisemites. You know it, I know it and other black leaders – those who do not subscribe to this hate speech and those who speak up to negate it – know it, too.
The writer is a columnist and a social and political commentator. Watch his new TV show, Thinking Out Loud, on JBS. Read his latest book, THUGS. He maintains The Micah Report.