Tuesday, March 15, 2016


He is, as he has been described, and as he behaves, as he has proved and as he bloviates, as a "pathological liar." And so he is. His messages are filled with hate -- for those who are "different," poor, needy -- those he describes as "losers" and worse. He has offended our allies and articulated no support for Israel. His "policies," such as they are, seem to be found in internet rumor and urban myth. Every true "conservative," every knowledgeable Jewish conservative, who has reviewed his ever-changing positions on matters of substance, has found him indifferent, even opposed to "conservative principles." Yet, he is by every measure, about to represent the Republican Party as its candidate for President. He is Donald Trump.

I have watched so many old newsreels of the United States in the '30s. One set of images that has haunted me is of massive Nazi rallies in our country...in the United States...where Jewish protesters were dragged out by those in brownshirts, beaten, and our ancestors were silent. Now, I watch as non-violent protesters at Trump "rallies" are pushed out, dragged out, struck, and demeaned by the crowd, led by a candidate who demeans anyone who opposes him in any way. 1930s Nazi thugs, 2016 Trump thuggery. 

I have received e-mails from Jewish friends that have asserted (or suggested) that these protesters deserve whatever ("whatever") they get because they are the progeny of Saul Alinsky and Tom Ayers. These are self-characterized Jewish Republicans whose "anyone but Obama" mantra is now playing out as "anyone but Hillary" -- apparently even Trump. Really? Trump? Because we hate Hillary and her policies so much that we would support this guy. These are the same ones who alerted us to the probability that President Obama would be no friend of Israel. They forget that Obama at best attested in his campaign in 2008 that he would be a friend of Israel; Trump has made no pretense that he would the office with a goal in the Middle East of something he calls "balance" between Israel and the Palestinians. He refers to the American Jewish polity as "you Jews" and he rejects in style and rhetoric (because there is no substance) Jewish values as embodied in tikkun olam

It's time, past time, for us as a Jewish polity to join hands with women, with Latins, with African Americans, and, with Muslims, with any and all Americans who share the things we value in our democracy in opposition to this Trump candidacy grounded in hatred for the "other' and the explicit rejection of our values.

If not now, when?


P.S. As I posted I received a broadside that announced the Reform Movement's condemnation of Trump's "hate speech."


Anonymous said...


In Tablet today, James Kirchisk, an avowed conservative, in a brilliantly reasoned piece, "Why Trump Is Turning Me Liberal," calls it like it is: "To those Jews who contemplate making peace with a President Donald Trump: He is the candidate of the mob, and the mob always ends up turning on the Jews."

paul jeser said...

The worst way - as proven time and time again - to stop Trump is to keep on attacking him. Every time he is attacked by someone from the 'establishment' he gets stronger. The electorate is mad - especially at the establishment (probably rightfully so...) and thus his support. The only way to stop Trump is to spend all that energy supporting the right candidate(s) who are being buried by those supporting him.

Citing the Reform movement's statement also will backfire. 400 reform Rabbis are members of J Street's Rabbinical cabinet. The co-Chair of this cabinet, a Reform Rabbi, has compared Israel to an addicted drunk.

S.Rosner has the best take on this sad situation:
To Invite, or not to invite: Parsing the AIPAC and Trump question

Anonymous said...

give it a rest, Paul. How many times can you attack the same rabbi for that statement. So he said it. Does it mean he doesn't love Israel? Of course he does. Stop it.

Anonymous said...

Richard, the totality of Paul Jesern's first paragraph is ridiculous -- Jews should be silenced because Trump does so much better when or if we are? Then he would point to Kasich who has been, what, polite and won his home state as "proof?" How inane. Trump is a more dangerous George Wallace (who won 13 state primaries) and must be confronted, peacefully, at every opportunity. Further, given Trump's delegate count, who could anyone suggest as Jeser's "right candidate" who might emerge from the ether to now snatch the Republican nomination away? Just watch, at the end of the day Paul will be supporting Trump.

Anonymous said...

Rosove's actual comments were thoughtful, meaningful and necessary. They were words of love and support for Israel. Paul Jeser attacks because he doesn't understand or accept legitimate criticism.


Anonymous said...

Paul, in your latest blog you say that "There is a reasonable chance that Trump will be our next president. Do you REALLY want him to remember how he was treated by some in the pro-Israel community?" I agree. So are you going to lobby in favor of Bernie Sanders being treated respectfully when/if he speaks at AIPAC?