Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore via Flickr
Andrew Yang

Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, a long-time resident of New York City, is running for mayor, according to Channel 4 in New York which spotted his application to the city’s Campaign Finance Board. Yang wants to replace the term-limited Mayor Bill de Blasio. But the NY Post on Saturday made Yang’s task a whole lot more difficult, revealing that the candidate is opposed to circumcision.

In a city with a large number of Jews and Muslims, that could be a problem.

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The Democratic primary in NYC is scheduled for June 22, and early polls are showing Yang with a lead in a field of mostly unknowns—he is followed by Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer. It stands to reason that, as is common in the early stages of a political race, that Yang’s lead is due to name recognition and not based on his agenda.

The Post cited a March 19 interview with the Daily Beast (Andrew Yang, Upstart Democratic Presidential Candidate, Comes Out Against Circumcision), where he stated, “I’m highly aligned with the intactivists,” and suggested that “history will prove them even more correct.”

Intactivists are people who campaign against involuntary infant male circumcision.

“From what I’ve seen, the evidence on it being a positive health choice for the infant is quite shaky,” Yang told The Beast, and promised that should he become Mayor, he would “inform parents that it is entirely up to them whether their infant gets circumcised, and that there are costs and benefits either way.”

“The more choice we give parents, and the more we diminish the possible preconceptions or misinformation various parents are receiving, then the better off we’ll be as a society,” Yang said.

In a December 31, 2020 tweet, Yang clarified: “I have attended multiple friends’ brises (sic.) and felt privileged to do so. I believe in religious freedom. This is every parent’s personal decision and not a role of government.”

But in a March 13, 2020 tweet, replying to the user Jellyfish Rave, who tweeted, “Hey @AndrewYang please accept my peace offering of one (1) vote in exchange for being kind of epic on the circumcision question,” Yang tweeted: “Against the practice.” And later, the same Jellyfish Rave tweeted: “We’re going to ban circumcision and there’s literally nothing anyone can do about it.”

So it looks like Yang himself is not going to send cops to arrest the Berkowitz bris milah barty, but it stands to reason that his entourage would include a few radical “intactivists.”

Andrew Yang, 46, who defined himself during the 2020 campaign as an “entrepreneur who understands the economy,” is the son of immigrants from Taiwan. In 2011, he founded Venture for America (VFA), a nonprofit organization focused on creating jobs. Yang ran a happy-go-lucky, tech-friendly campaign which he suspended in February 2020, after the New Hampshire primary.

Since we gave him a failing grade on making wise platform choice when it comes to the Jews and Muslims of the city, we looked up his record on Israel. He raised many an eyebrow last February when he told the NY Times Palestinian refugees and their descendants should be able to return to Israel. He tried to take it back, of course, just like the circumcision thing.

According to Wiki, Yang wants a “two-state solution that allows both the Israeli and Palestinian people to have sovereign land and self-determination.” He has called Iran a “destabilizing force in the region,” but supported President Barack Obama’s Iran nuclear deal. Incidentally, in 2012, Yang was named a “Champion of Change” by the Obama administration.

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David writes news at JewishPress.com.
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