Lucas: It's Not About the Money
BY Advocate Contributors
March 03 2011 5:35 PM ET
COMMENTARY: I wish I could have been there to see it. Last Tuesday, a handful of anti-Israeli activists' heads exploded when they found out that New York's LGBT Center had canceled their planned Israeli Apartheid Week shindig and barred them from meeting at the center ever again.
The only explanation they could find for this horrible injustice: A porn star named Michael Lucas had used "his wealth and connections" to shut them down. While decrying characterizations of their group as anti-Semitic, they blamed rich Jews for forcing the LGBT Center's hand.
Their Jewish conspiracy theory allowed them to ignore the true reason the LGBT Center decided to disassociate itself from their cause: Their advocacy is hateful, runs counter to the cause of LGBT rights, and has no place at an organization established as a safe space for all members of the LGBT community.
Let's explore these points individually.
1. This fringe group is hateful: Sherry Wolf, a self-described socialist, is part of the Siegebusters Working Group. She and her top comrades, like Judith Butler, have challenged "the right of Israel to exist." This isn’t the blatant kind of anti-Semitism where someone says “I hate Jews.” Theirs is of a more subtle variety. The group’s goal is that all of Palestine should become a multiracial secular state. The inevitable consequence of that is that demographics would turn this "Palestine" into an Arab dominated state, and Jews would lose their homeland. That's perhaps not an issue for Sherry, who lives comfortably in the U.S., but it's a matter of life and death for many Jews. Show me one Muslim state with a vibrant, protected Jewish community. You can't. And so she and her cohorts would deny Jews the only refuge that is actually theirs. That, in my mind, is anti-Semitic.
Butler, who teaches at University of California, Berkeley, has praised the terrorist organisations Hamas and Hezbollah, telling a liberal German daily, "These movements could be described as left." No, Ms. Butler. Anyone with a grip on reality would describe them as murderous Islamic terror groups. Hamas and Hezbollah would love nothing more than to send a suicide bomber into a place like the LGBT center.
Why would these phony feminists direct their anger toward Israel instead of the inequalities and injustices in the Arab world, if not for their anti-Semitic motivations?
Their apartheid claims are patently ridiculous. The misappropriation of the term is disrespectful and minimizes the tragic history in South Africa. In Israel, Arabs and Jews are not separated. They go to the same schools, share the same rooms in hospitals. Young Arabs and Jews party at some of the same clubs. There is no legal separation.