Chuck Schumer: Jews Are Threatened by Left-Wing Antisemitism

Chuck Schumer
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Left-wing allies of the Democratic Party are allying with antisemites to drown out public sympathy for embattled Israel, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) wrote in an op-ed for the New York Times on Wednesday.

“Today, too many Americans are exploiting arguments against Israel and leaping toward a virulent antisemitism,” Schumer wrote.

The antisemitic arguments also come from people “we considered allies,” he wrote, adding:

What happened last week at the Queens high school is an example of crossing that threshold. Walking out of school to march in support of Palestinians is completely legitimate. But forcing a Jewish teacher to hide because she had attended a rally in support of Israel is antisemitism, pure and simple.

For many Jewish people today, the rise of antisemitism is more than a crisis — it’s a five-alarm fire.

Many progressives have been shocked by the sudden emergence of left-wing antisemitism — especially among younger “woke” progressives and immigrants — after they spent decades successfully blaming “right-wing” nationalists for alleged antisemitism despite their strong support for Israel. The problem is exacerbated by the declining share of Americans with historic sympathies toward Israel.

“We see so many of our friends and fellow citizens — particularly young people who yearn for justice — unknowingly aiding and abetting [the antisemitism] cause,” Schumer later told the New York Times. He suggested that the Jewish communities’ focus on legal rights and civic diversity deserves reciprocal support from other minorities:

“Not long ago, many of us marched together for Black and brown lives,” Mr. Schumer said. “We stood against anti-Asian hatred. We protested bigotry against the L.G.B.T.Q. community. We fought for reproductive justice, out of the recognition that injustice against one oppressed group is injustice against all.”

The emergence of antisemitism in the Democrats’ political coalition is a political problem for many Democratic politicians — especially those in states and districts where Democrats assumed immigrants would reward the pro-migration Democratic Party. The New York Times reported on October 28:

Sam Baydoun, a Wayne County commissioner in Dearborn, Mich., has been glued to Al Jazeera for weeks to absorb news from the war in Israel and Gaza.

Mr. Baydoun, a Democrat who is Lebanese American, has watched with fury as Israeli airstrikes have caused the deaths of many civilians, including children, following the deadly attack by Hamas on Israel on Oct. 7 that killed many. He saw President Biden visit Israel and pledge full-throated American support. And he is thinking ahead to the presidential election of 2024, a contest that could hinge on a handful of states including Michigan, whose Muslim and Arab American voters turned out decisively for Mr. Biden three years ago.

“How can I tell somebody who’s watching these atrocities on live TV, today, to vote for President Biden?” he said. “The pulse of the community is overwhelmingly not supportive of Biden now. They feel betrayed.”

Schumer suggested that left-wingers have allied with antisemitism pushed by Arab and immigrant groups because of the “woke” ideology that urges progressives to side with minorities, regardless of the merits in each dispute. “Because some Jewish people have done well in America, because Israel has increased its power and territory, there are people who feel that Jewish Americans are not vulnerable,” he said.

That explanation was echoed by the New York Times article, which said, “Many progressives have taken up the Palestinian cause as an extension of the racial and social justice movements that have recently dominated Democratic politics.”

The shift within the Democratic Party was spotlighted by a November 27 debate at the Oakland City Council, where many progressives denounced a draft resolution against Hamas after its feral massacre of more than 1,000 Israelis on October 7:

Many ordinary Democrats shrug off the growing antisemitism, Schumer told the New York Times. Jews, he said, regard the rise of antisemitism “a crisis, a five-alarm fire that must be extinguished,” while many of his non-Jewish friends consider it “merely a problem, a matter of concern.”

He added:

When I was a boy, I learned what happened when the Nazis invaded my family’s town in Ukraine. The Nazis ordered my great-grandmother to gather her extended family on the porch of her home. When the Nazis told her to come with them, she refused, and they gunned her down, along with 30 members of her family, from 85 years old to 3 months old.

Watch the speech here:


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