Should the Women's March organizers disavow anti-Semitism?
via AP

Should the Women's March organizers disavow anti-Semitism?

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The activist left is arguing after one of the Women's March organizers attended a speech given by Nation of Islam leader and virulent anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan called out Tamika Mallory by name in his speech, and she posted photos with him on social media afterwards. Critics say Mallory and her fellow organizers Carmen Perez and Linda Sarsour need to disavow Farrakhan, but others say calling them anti-Semites is an unfair smear and an effort to divide allies. What do you think?


Farrakhan isn't just anti-Semitic: he's homophobic, transphobic and misogynistic as well. What are the leaders of a supposedly inclusive and intersectional feminist movement doing associating themselves with him? Especially given the massive uptick in anti-Semitic violence in America, many argue disavowing Farrakhan should be a no-brainer, and are disturbed that Mallory, Perez and Sarsour refuse to do so.

We wanted something that most thought would be pretty simple for a bunch of women who spend their days parading around their intersectionality: We wanted them to denounce anti-Semitism and the words Farrakhan said against Jews. This isn’t a new thing; after all, we ask public figures to denounce awful people and hate speech all the time.
As Diane Alston noted, there are Black Jews who are more directly impacted by Farrakhan’s words, not to mention Black members of the LGBTQ community and other groups who’ve been targeted by the Nation of Islam leader in the past. What do the Women’s March leaders say to them?

Why is it so hard for them to say his anti-Semitism and bigotry are wrong and contrary to their movement?

Critics are calling the organizers hypocrites for refusing to take a stand.

But some have stood up for Mallory and the other organizers, saying it's unfair to hold audience members responsible for everything that is said by a speaker.

But many activists say the Women's March leaders need to step up and own their error. Bigotry isn't what you say or think: it's what you do, and it's the choices you make.

Another Women's March organizer decried Farrakhan and his bigotry, but argued there needs to be more nuance in how the situation is being discussed.

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