Jewish Leaders Denounce Right-Wing Smears of Occupy Wall Street

For Immediate Release, Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2011

Mark Green,
Carinne Luck,

A Statement Against Smears

We are publicly engaged American Jews who support both Israel and the ideas behind Occupy Wall Street and who also strongly oppose right-wing attempts to smear that movement with false charges of anti-Semitism.

It’s an old, discredited tactic: find a couple of unrepresentative people in a large movement and then conflate the oddity with the cause. One black swan means that all swans are black.

One particularly vile example was a television ad during Sunday talk shows paid for by something called the Emergency Committee for Israel that is organized by William Kristol and Gary Bauer.

It is disingenuous to raise the canard about Jews and Wall Street in order to denounce it.

Occupy Wall Street is a mass protest against rising inequality in America, a fact documented last week by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office. Anyone who visits Zuccotti Park understands that it has nothing to do with religion and everything to do “with liberty and justice for all.”

All of us irrespective of party or position should expose and denounce anti-Semitism where ever it occurs, but not tar hundreds of thousands of protestors nationwide because a handful of hateful people show up with offensive signs that can’t be taken down in a public park open to all.

We are pleased that the Anti-Defamation League agrees that some random signs “are not representative of the larger views of the Occupy Wall Street movement.”

Stuart Appelbaum, President, RWDSU*
Jeremy Ben-Ami, founder and President, J Street
Richard Brodsky, former Assemblyman, New York
Danny Goldberg, President, Goldve Entertainment
Mark Green, former Public Advocate for New York City
Elizabeth Holtzman, former Congresswoman and District Attorney (Brooklyn)
Rabbi Steven Jacobs, founder, Progressive Faith Foundation
Rabbi Jill Jacobs, Executive Director, Rabbis for Human Rights-North America
Madeleine Kunin, former Governor, Vermont
Jo-ann Mort, CEO, ChangeCommunicaitons
Eliot Spitzer, former Governor, New York State
Andy Stern, President Emeritus, Service Employees International Union
Hadar Susskind, Vice President, Tides Foundation
Margery Tabankin, President, Margery Tabankin Assoc.
Randi Weingarten, President, American Federation of Teacher
*Institutions for identification purposes only


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