[H/t to Pajamas Media]
Roger L. Simon has a couple of posts on a troubling anti-Semitic outburst by Reverend Eric Lee, president of the Los Angeles branch of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). The SCLC was started by Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. and Bayard Rustin, among others. The event was held on April 4 (the fortieth anniversary of King’s assassination) and organized by Kappa Alpha Psi, a predominately African-American fraternity. Kappa Alpha Psi was giving its Tom Bradley Award to an Israeli-American activist, Daphna Ziman. Ziman, who received the award for her work as chairperson and founder of Children Uniting Nations.
After Ziman received her award, Reverend Lee began his keynote address. Simon reports:
[A]fter praising Malcolm X, he started staring directly at Ziman, according to an email she sent.
Ziman’s email states “[Lee] started talking about the African American children who are suffering because of the Jews that have featured them as rapists and murderers. He spoke of a Jewish Rabbi, and then corrected himself to say ‘What other kind of Rabbis are there, but Jews.’ He told how this Rabbi came to him to say that he would like to bring the AA [African-American] community and the Jewish community together. ‘NO, NO, NO!!!!’ he shouted into the crowd, ‘we are not going to come together. The Jews have made money on us in the music business and we are the entertainers, and they are economically enslaving us.’”
Lee later apologized for the outburst. Here is a bit:
In a very small part of my presentation, I referenced a meeting I had with Rabbi’s and other community leaders. A Rabbi stated in that meeting that the close relationship between the African American and Jewish communities had been disconnected after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. I further referenced in my speech that my response to the Rabbi was that the Black Power Movement emerged after the assassination of Dr. King and it was a direct response to the negative characterizations of African Americans through the silver screen, TV and the music industry, industries that are influenced by many in the Jewish community. I then stated to the Rabbis that the Black Power Movement was our effort to define for ourselves our own identity rather than be defined by anyone else. I then indicated in my presentation that I told the Rabbis’ that before a genuine coalition could be rebuilt between our communities, there would have to be dialogue and efforts made to deal with the negative characterizations of African Americans.”
More of the same sad but predictable “blame the Jews” rhetoric from a so-called “progressive” black preacher. Not only that, the reverend is being historically dishonest. As he must be well aware, Stokely Carmichael gave his “Black Power” speech in 1966 and there were plenty of militant leaders who were critical of King’s willingness to work with white, Jewish and other allies across the color line, particularly in the labor movement, well before King’s assassination. Malcolm X comes to mind here. Turns out Reverend Lee is also a fellow-traveler of International ANSWER, CAIR, and Cynthia McKinney. No surprise there. McKinney’s father blamed the J-E-W-S for her his election defeat in 2006 2002.
You can email SCLC president and CEO, Charles Steele, Jr at:
Let him know what you think about someone who supposedly is acting in the tradition of Reverend King behaving in this manner. Will it do any good? I don’t know. But if you don’t stand up, who will?