It’s like Israel: It’s okay for me to criticize ADL president Abe Foxman, but you’ll sure get my hackles up if you do.
James Traub’s portrayal of anti-Semitism’s main man in the NY Times is less than flattering and makes him out to be some mad meglomaniac who sees a Nazi behind every lampshade. The article accuses Foxy of shining the limelight only on himself, and the ADL itself, “for all its myriad activities, is a one-man Sanhedrin doling out opprobrium or absolution for those who speak ill of Israel or the Jews.”
I’m not saying the man couldn’t be painted as an overreactive control freak once in a while, but the article’s further implications that Foxman and his cronies at AIPAC do in fact run the world make this one of the most outwardly anti-Semitic pieces in national publishing.
But an unfair comparison to a genuine media whore is the thing that really got my “I’m A Foxman Groupie” panties in a wad:
“Its tempting to compare Abe Foxman with Al Sharpton, another portly, bellicose, melodramatizing defender of ethnic ramparts.”
Sharpton may be a hero to some, but he’s made some questionable choices (Spike TV, hello? Oh, and that whole Crown Height Riots incident.) Abraham Foxman may be a little paranoid and make people uncomfortable with his uncompromising commitment to rooting out anti-Semitism from its nooks and crannies near and far, but his vigilance is the reason we have a climate in which we can speak up for ourselves in the face of hate and ignorance.
The NY Times can dismiss Foxman’s fears as neurotic and unfounded, but I have an uneasy feeling we’ll miss him when he’s gone.
Hat tip: Jewschool.