After he faced multiple antisemitic smears from MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Steven Menashi, who was nominated by President Trump for a federal appeals court seat, now faces a CNN article that distorts his college writings.
In the article, CNN claimed Menashi “has a history of denouncing women’s marches against sexual assault, dismissing education about multicultural awareness and accusing a major LGBTQ group of exploiting the brutal murder of a gay student for political ends.”
CNN noted Menashi’s accusations of hypocrisy against the Human Rights Campaign for not calling out crimes perpetrated by gay men. As it turns out, an openly gay journalist named Andrew Sullivan echoed Menashi’s remarks in the April 2, 2001 edition of The New Republic.
“The leading gay rights organization, the Human Rights Campaign–which has raised oodles of cash exploiting the horror of Shepard’s murder–has said nothing whatsoever about the Dirkhising case,” Sullivan wrote at the time. “For the HRC, the murder of Jesse Dirkhising is off-message.”
“Worse, there’s a touch of embarrassment among some gays about the case, as if the actions of this depraved couple had some connection to the rest of gay America,” Sullivan added. “Don’t these squeamish people realize that, by helping to hush this up, they seem to confirm homophobic suspicions that this murder actually is typical of gays?”
Carrie Severino, Judicial Crisis Network Chief Counsel and Policy Director, released this statement in response to CNN’s false accusations against Menashi:
First the Democrats and their media allies smeared Steve Menashi with an anti-Semitic mischaracterization of his past scholarship, and now they are purposely distorting his college newspaper articles – the common theme of which is an intellectual and forceful indictment of political correctness and identity politics as divisive and destructive forces that are pulling the country apart. These are the same types of smears the Democrats have thrown at several highly qualified people nominated by the President to serve as federal judges including Amy Coney Barrett, Neomi Rao, Brian Buescher, Ken Lee and, of course, with Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh – all of whom were confirmed.
According to sources, the ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ portion from Menashi mentioned in CNN’s article was overplayed, and Menashi “was not defending a particular policy with respect to gays in the military.”
CNN’s article comes after Maddow targeted Menashi in a segment for his 2010 law-review article titled, “Ethnonationalism and Liberal Democracy,” wherein he argued “ethnonationalism remains a common and accepted feature of liberal democracy that is consistent with current state practice and international law.”
Maddow distorted Menashi’s argument and attempted to turn it into “a high-brow argument for racial purity.” She went on to claim that Menashi argued, “how definitely democracy can’t work unless the country is defined by a unifying race.”
Contrary to what media elites say, several of Menashi’s writings showed his concern for victims of bigotry and racism, such as one piece titled, “Chilling Free Expression” from August 16, 1999.
“When students cannot evaluate claims of racism and sensitivity, and instinctively apologize whenever minority groups object, liberal education—not to mention rational discourse—suffers,” Menashi wrote at the time.
Menashi’s writings also reveal that he is a huge advocate for free speech.
“But part of living in a diverse community is coming into contact with people whose opinions and rhetoric are different, unsettling, and yes, even offensive,” Menashi wrote in 2001. “To restrict what can be thought and said, however, is to destroy the free expression of ideas on which liberal education rests.”