The American people should be proud of their president. In the wake of the tragic shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, President Donald Trump spoke out in the most forceful condemnation of anti-Semitism ever uttered by an American president.
While former president Barack Obama nonsensically chose to the blame the firearm used in the crime, as if the gun fired itself, Trump put the blame squarely where it belongs: on the evil ideology and man who pulled the trigger while shouting, “All Jews must die.”
In a speech in Murphysboro, Illinois, Trump declared, “We must stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters to defeat anti-Semitism, vanquish the forces of hate … Through the centuries, the Jews have endured terrible persecution … Those seeking (the Jewish people’s) destruction, we will seek their destruction.”
The president is doing much more than offering his “thoughts and prayers” to the families whose loved ones were murdered by this evil, anti-Semite, Robert Bowers. The president has vowed to go on the offensive to seek the destruction of those “forces of hate” who would persecute our Jewish friends, neighbors and fellow countrymen.
The president has vowed to use the full force and power of the U.S. Department of Justice to bring Bowers to justice. The very same day Bowers committed these horrible crimes, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions filed a 29-count complaint against him in federal court. Now that’s quick and decisive action.
The charges include hate crimes and 11 counts of obstruction of exercise of religious beliefs resulting in death. The president is doing exactly what he said he would do — seek the destruction of the man who destroyed the lives of 11, innocent Jewish Americans simply attempting to exercise their religious freedom. These charges carry the death penalty.
Pittsburgh City police have filed charges also. But they were filed in state court. And because Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf refuses to carry out the death penalty, Bowers, if he’s only convicted of state charges, will be spared paying what Trump refers to as the “ultimate price” so long as Wolf remains the governor. This evil, anti-Semite should be put to death, not allowed to live the rest of his life at taxpayer expense.
Such punishment not only fits the crime it carries out the words of the Torah, “Life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.” (Deuteronomy 19:21)
While the president has taken direct and aggressive action against the mass murderer, a group of self-proclaimed leaders of Pittsburgh’s Jewish community, have condemned the president. The group, Bend the Arc Jewish Action, has declared Trump persona non grata in Pittsburgh until and unless he ceases his, “assault on immigrants and refugees.” Those are harsh and unfair words spoken at a time of mourning in America.
Let’s hope the members of Bend the Arc can put politics aside and practice what they preach — that every human being is made b’tzelem Elohim, in the image of God, even Trump. The president believes that to protect the American people from the followers of al-Qaida, the Islamic State or one of the many anti-Semitic terrorist groups who would come here to harm and kill Americans, particularly Jewish Americans, we need a thorough vetting process and a border wall.
The president is leading the rhetorical fight against anti-Semitism as well. And, some of the leaders of the Democratic Party would do well to follow his lead. It was painful to watch former president Bill Clinton recently share the stage, a handshake and a laugh with the virulent anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan — a man who has called Judaism a “gutter religion” and who declared just months before, “Satanic Jews have infected the whole world with poison and deceit.” Clinton should have rebuked Farrakhan instead of warmly embracing him.
Former President Barack Obama, former Nation of Islam member and current Democratic National Committee Deputy Chair, Rep. Keith Ellison and Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters have all shamefully accepted Farrakhan’s political and financial support. Recently a secret photo of a smiling Obama and Farrakhan, coming out of Congressional Black Caucus meeting in our U.S. Capitol Building, taken when Obama was a newly elected senator, was released. These Democratic leaders should not be smiling and socializing with this heinous, anti-Semite.
And, then there’s Trump. He’s not only strongly condemning anti-Semitism but bringing the full power and prestige of the U.S. government to bear upon those would seek the destruction of the Jewish people. Trump is proving once again that, unlike his critics who pay lip service to religious tolerance while embracing deplorable anti-Semites like Louis Farrakhan, he is confronting and attempting to destroy this evil and perverse ideology. And for that the American people should laud and not condemn him.
Because of his unprecedented words and actions confronting the ancient scourge of anti-Semitism, perhaps Donald Trump will go down in history as America’s first Jewish president.
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