The Women’s March, Farrakhan, and Black Anti-Semitism

Last month on “The View,” Meghan McCain confronted women’s march co-president Tamika Mallory over her relationship with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. Mallory had attended Farrakhan’s recent “Saviour’s Day” sermon. Mallory also posted a photo on Facebook of Farrakhan with his arm around her shoulder. Mallory captioned it, “Thank God this man is alive and doing well. He is definitely the GOAT. Happy Birthday @louisfarrakhan!”

After characterizing Farrakhan as an anti-Semite and a homophobe, View host Sunny Hostin asked Mallory, “Why call him the Greatest of all time?”

“I didn’t call him the greatest of all time because of his rhetoric; I called him the Greatest of All Time for what he’s done in black communities,” Mallory responded, to applause from the studio audience.

Meghan McCain spoke up, “Let me just interject really quickly, I would never be comfortable supporting someone who called.” McCain looked at her notes and quoted Farrakhan, “I’m not anti-Semite, I’m anti-termite. It’s the wicked Jews, the false Jews, who are promoting lesbianism and homosexuality.”

McCain went on to ask Tamika Mallory and her fellow marcher, Bob Bland, about a recent Tablet magazine expose of the Women’s March. The Tablet article alleged that Tamika Mallory and Carmen Perez had privately claimed that Jews were responsible for the North American slave trade, a view shared by Louis Farrakhan.

Mallory defended her relation with Farrakhan, “I don’t agree with many of Minister Farrakhan’s statements... I don’t agree with these statements... It’s not my language. It’s not the way that I speak. It is not how I organize.”

While Hostin and McCain exposed Tamika Mallory as at best indifferent to Farrakhan’s anti-Semitism, their line of questioning demonstrated a fundamental misunderstanding of Farrakhan’s ideology. Hostin and McCain appeared to equate Farrakhan’s attitude toward gays and lesbians with his attitude toward Jews, when they aren’t comparable.

“...the fornicator can’t look at the lesbian or the homosexual and say, “I’m better than you.” The liar, the thief, the gambler, the pimp, the prostitute, the lowlife, you can’t look at those who are gay or lesbian or transgender and say “I’m better than you.” Sin is sin, according to the standard of God. You say, “well that was back know...I mean, it’s a modern time now.” Modern for you, but not for God.” -- Louis Farrakhan, 2012

While liberals and progressives would likely deride Farrakhan as homophobic, there is no comparison between his traditional “love the sinner, hate the sin,” attitude toward homosexuals and his virulent anti-Semitism.

Farrakhan’s 2018 Saviours’ Day sermon, which Tamika Mallory attended, touched on everything from sexual harassment in the workplace to the problem of obesity in the black community. However, Farrakhan saved his best for last. One and a half hours into his speech, Farrakhan launched into an extended rant against the Jews.

Jesus 2000 years ago was not the messiah. He was a prophet. He was the last prophet to the Jews. What Farrakhan? Yeah, I’m coming strong now. He was the last prophet to the house of Israel, the entire white race. They were made to raise hell. Everywhere they have gone, they have destroyed the peace of the human family...

At this point, it’s not clear whether Farrakhan is referring to the ancient Hebrews specifically, or the “white race” in general. The Nation of Islam teaches that white people are the result of a selective breeding program, a project carried out by a black scientist named Yakub and his followers.

In fact, he learned he was 2000 years too soon to end the civilization of the Jews. Wait, wait, now, end the civilization of the Jews? They the boss. This is their world. Oh wait, oh wait a minute, I know a few Jews, they’re not... see he’s an anti-Semite. Stop it, I’m a truth teller.

In accordance with Nation of Islam theology, Farrakhan teaches that blacks exist at the bottom of an unjust racial hierarchy. The white race, the final product of Yakub’s selective breeding process, sit at the top of this hierarchy. Further, within the white race, Jews form an elite that controls global affairs from behind the scenes.

You have German Jews, Polish Jews, Ukrainian Jews, Russian Jews, Lithuanian Jews, Estonian, Latvian, Denmark Jews, Sweden, Norway, Finland Jews. You have Italian Jews; you have French Jews, and everywhere they are, they take on the language, the culture, but they run the money. They run the business. When there’s a Jewish holiday, everything gets silent. They’re very wise people.

For decades, Farrakhan has promoted anti-Semitism, in sermons, in media appearances, and in writing. In his 2018 Saviour’s day speech, Farrakhan castigated Jews for rejecting Christ and accused them of promoting homosexuality in the black community. Despite his anti-Semitism, Farrakhan has avoided the type of ostracism that someone like David Duke experiences.

In his Saviour’s day speech Farrakhan bragged about his connection to various Black leaders, including Barack Obama and Keith Ellison. Farrakhan was invited to speak at the funerals of Rosa Parks and Aretha Franklin. While, few black politicians would publicly endorse Farrakhan, they haven’t treated him as a pariah.

Many liberals and African Americans attribute Farrakhan’s status in the black community to the Nation of Islam’s charitable works and message of black self-improvement. While there may be some truth to that, persistent anti-Semitism among African-Americans also contributes to Farrakhan’s popularity.

For decades, surveys have consistently found higher levels of anti-Semitism among African Americans than among white Americans. A 2013 ADL survey found that only 8% of non-Hispanic whites were anti-Semitic. By comparison, 12% of U.S.-born Hispanics, 22% of African-Americans, and 40% of foreign-born Hispanics were anti-Semitic, according to the ADL’s definition.

When discussing black anti-Semitism, it’s important to remember that the overwhelming majority of African-Americans are not anti-Semitic; 78% of blacks surveyed did not meet the ADL’s definition of anti-Semitic. Further, prominent African-Americans such as Henry Louis Gates have spoken out against black anti-Semitism, and some African-Americans could even be characterized as philo-Semitic.

With that being said, black anti-Semitism is a painful fact for Jewish Americans. Many Jews believe that because both blacks and Jews have suffered discrimination, blacks will be more sympathetic toward them. However, the evidence suggests that blacks are not particularly sympathetic toward Jews, or if they are sympathetic, it doesn’t translate into affection.

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