African American pogromist Al Sharpton and renowned anti-Jewish presidential candidate Jesse Jackson have been on the war path over media outlets everywhere in reaction to the race riots that erupted in several American cities after the police killing of George Floyd on May 25.
Floyd died when Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer, knelt on Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, out of which the victim was unresponsive for 2 minutes and 53 seconds, according to the criminal complaint against Chauvin.
Peaceful demonstrations that followed Floyd’s death in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area soon devolved into race riots as windows were smashed at a police precinct that was later set on fire, along with a number of large stores. Many other stores were looted and damaged, and a number of innocent bystanders were attacked by the angry mobs. Rioters also skirmished with police, who fired tear gas and rubber bullets at the crowds.
By Saturday, protests against police brutality and George Floyd’s death erupted in Los Angeles, New York City, Boston, Houston[, Denver, Louisville, Memphis, Columbus, San Jose, Seattle, Portland, Des Moines, Washington, DC, outside the White House, and Windermere, Florida, outside officer Chauvin’s summer home.
Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton both took advantage of these furious and tragic events to recapture the media’s attention. On Friday, Sharpton showed up on the corner of 38th Street and S. Chicago Avenue, where officer Chauvin was recorded kneeling on Floyd’s neck. Jackson showed up at the Greater Friendship Missionary Baptist Church, 2600 E. 38th St., alongside several African-American ministers and civic leaders who urged cooperation and calm.
In August, 1991, Al Sharpton fueled a race riot in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, after the accidental death of a black child by one of the cars in the motorcade of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. Sharpton eulogized the child, referring to the “diamond dealers,” and saying, “It’s an accident to allow an apartheid ambulance service in the middle of Crown Heights.” A banner that was displayed at the funeral said, “Hitler did not do the job.”
Brandeis University historian Edward S. Shapiro described the Crown Heights riot as “the most serious anti-Semitic incident in American history.”
Jackson was slammed 1984 for referring to Jews as “Hymies” and to New York City as “Hymietown.” He was speaking to a black Washington Post reporter, and assumed he won’t be quoted in print. He was wrong. It didn’t help his reputation when Louis Farrakhan warned the Jews, in Jackson’s presence, that “if you harm this brother [Jackson], it will be the last one you harm.”
Since then, Jackson publicly apologized to Jews for his anti-Semitic slurs, but did not denounce Farrakhan’s ant-Semitic threats. Then, after President Jimmy Carter fired UN Ambassador Andrew Young for meeting with the PLO, Jackson and other black leaders publicly endorsed a Palestinian state, and Jackson called Prime Minister Menachem Begin a terrorist.
As is always the case when individuals such as Sharpton and Jackson are involved, the race riots across America will not calm down with their help. George Floyd and the African American community deserve justice for what appears like an unjustified police killing – but they could find better, more capable leaders than these two proven anti-Semites.