New York Democrat Pressures CUNY over Hosting Pro-Sharia BDS Activist Linda Sarsour

Linda Sarsour speaks onstage during the Women's March on Washington on January 21, 2017 in Washington, DC. . (photo credit:THEO WARGO/GETTY IMAGES/AFP)

A leading New York City Democrat is calling on fellow progressives to recognize Sharia law advocate and CUNY commencement speaker Linda Sarsour as a bigot.

“I want to emphasize that Linda’s statements on social media and at rallies are Linda’s– she owns them,” Rory Lancman – a member of the New York City Council from Queens – told the Algemeiner. “They have a history of antisemitism, of anti-Zionism – if you can believe that is something someone would still traffic in, in 2017 – and of hostility and threats towards people who disagree with her.”

Lancman told the Algemeiner that it was “inappropriate” for CUNY’s Graduate School of Public Health to host Sarsour, a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions activist (BDS), given her statements against Jews and other women.

In the past, Sarsour has tweeted that “nothing is creepier than Zionism” and said that anti-Islamist writers Brigitte Gabriel and Ayaan Hirsi Ali deserve an “a$$ whipping” and that she wishes she could have their “vaginas taken away” for their opposition to Sharia law, which she supports:

Yet Sarsour has many progressive supporters who reportedly insist she is the victim of pro-Israel advocates.

Despite her anti-Israel rhetoric, the TAlgemeiner reported that, at a small rally organized by progressive groups in Lower Manhattan on Monday, speakers rejected the allegation that Sarsour is an antisemite.

In an op-ed for the Daily News, leftist Rabbis Barat Ellman and Ellen Lippmann argued, “Linda Sarsour is a friend to Jews.” They wrote, “Yes, Sarsour is an ardent critic of Zionism — which should come as no surprise for a Palestinian-American with relatives in Palestine. But she has been clear that it is right-wing Zionism — Zionism that dismisses Palestinian claims to a national identity or for statehood — that she vehemently opposes.”

Zionism is the belief that Israel is the established and rightful homeland of the Jews.

The rabbi duo then goes on to suggest, “Sarsour’s retort — that Ali and others she disagrees with ‘don’t deserve to be women,’ so she wishes she could ‘take their vaginas away’ — was written in anger, and we agree it wasn’t nice,” adding, “But it was not meant to be taken literally, and is hardly proof that she wants to assault Muslims who disagree with her or surgically strike women’s bodies.”

In conclusion, Ellman and Lippmann said, “CUNY wants to honor a leader at commencement. We say amen.”

Lancman told the Algemeiner, “That whole op-ed was an absurd whitewash, and that sentence in particular. It was embarrassing for anyone who purports to be involved with women’s rights.”

Democrat New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) has also been critical of Sarsour. He created a video asking her to answer questions about her troubling statements and associations. In addition to the noted statements, he asked Sarsour, “You think this is a courageous act; to pick up rocks and throw them at cars?” in response to Sarsour’s tweet:

Hikind noted that those rocks have seriously injured people and killed people in cars. In 2013, a four-year-old girl died after the car she was in was attacked by rocks. Adele Biton was in a coma for two years before succumbing to her injuries and developing pneumonia.

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