Abbas’s Diatribe

            Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s remarks to the Palestinian National Council last week on the origins of the Holocaust have gone viral. “[T]he Jewish question that was widespread throughout Europe was not against their religion,” Abbas said, “but against their social function, which relates to usury and banking and such.”


The condemnations were swift and overwhelming and Abbas quickly backtracked. But his supposed apology only made matters worse. He said, “If people were offended by my statement in front of the PNC, especially people of the Jewish faith, I apologize to them. I would like to assure everyone that it was not my intention to do so, and to reiterate my full respect for the Jewish faith, as well as other monotheistic faiths.” [emphasis added]

Really? Abbas could not bring himself to acknowledge that people were likely to have been offended by his claiming that the Nazis had a point? Under what theory would they not have been?

Furthermore, where is his apology for ascribing the murder of Jews during the Holocaust to “their unscrupulous financial practices”? Indeed, he seems plainly unable to straightforwardly retract the calumny that Jews  caused the calamity visited upon them.

In an editorial sharply critical of Abbas, The New York Times said he “shed all credibility as a trustworthy partner if the Palestinians and Israelis ever again have the nerve to try negotiations.” This, interestingly, is the same paper that routinely blames Israel for the lack of peace negotiations.



Twitter And Anti-Semitism

            We have learned to our chagrin that the ADL is reporting that 4.2 million anti-Semitic messages were posted on Twitter in 2017.

In reaction to the news, Twitter put out a statement in which it stated: “We are an open platform and hold a mirror up to human behaviors, both the good and the bad.”

This seems a rather tad too cavalier and got us wondering what Twitter’s reaction would be to news that there were, say, more than four million anti-black tweets on its platform.

Four million tweets is a tiny percentage of the trillions of tweets posted on Twitter each year. Nonetheless, perhaps Twitter should think a little harder about how to be more selective.



Did Political Correctness Contribute To The Parkland Massacre? 

We were shocked to learn that there is credible evidence that an Obama-era civil rights guidelines designed to reduce the “school-to-prison pipeline” may have led to the recent Parkland, Florida, high school shooting massacre.

Under the Obama guidelines, schools were prodded to reduce the number of suspensions and expulsions, especially for students of color and students with disabilities, both of whom were being disciplined at disproportionately high rates.

The result was a sharp reduction in reporting dangerous behavior to law enforcement with disciplinary matters being handled within the school. Thus, although the seriously-troubled Nickolas Cruz, the perpetrator of the massacre, habitually acted in ways that would have previously been brought to the attention of the police, he was allowed to fall through the cracks.

According to the U.S. News & World Report, witnesses before the U.S. Civil Rights Commission said we should be alarmed that our efforts to fix the school-to-prison pipelines have actually made matters worse. “We are on a very dangerous road,” one witness said.

Civil rights groups naturally are countering that this argument is driven by ideology that dismisses policies aimed at helping historically-disadvantaged students.

While we have no doubt that some students were unfairly treated by the “school-to-prison pipeline” problem, we shouldn’t allow the tail to wag the dog. Rather, we should be thinking long and hard about the circumstances that allowed a Nickolas Cruz to slip under the radar.