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This Jew Doesn’t Accept Sean Spicer’s Apology Because I Remember the Past



Spicer’s Latest Comments Are a Throwback to Easter Pogroms of the 1800s

Any student of history – and particularly Jewish history – will know that the time around Passover and Easter and into the rest of the Spring and Summer was, for many centuries, a strange mix of religious euphoria and life-threatening fear. 

Passover is the Jewish holiday that celebrates liberation from slavery. It’s a time of pure happiness and gratitude as Jews focus on the miracle of freedom and redmption from the darkest moments of our collective history. And, from the 1800s through the middle of last century, (and probably earlier than that) it also marked the start of our darkest season. 

As Easter approached every year, Christians across Eastern Europe and Russia would terrorize – and even kill – Jews in the name of Jesus. The military or police never stepped in to stop them. Sometimes, they secretly (and even publicly) helped them. 

Why Easter? Ruth B. Bottigheimer explains:

For centuries, Christian churches all over the world taught children to hate Jews. Not only to hate them — but to justify their murder. They did so with one crucial choice: to tell the Gospel story in the words and the content of the book of Matthew rather than in alternate tellings by Mark, Luke, or John.

Matthew repeatedly used his telling of Jesus’ final days to exonerate Romans but to excoriate Jews for Jesus’ crucifixion. He magnified his vision of Jewish perfidy (choosing clemency for Barabbas, a murderer, rather than for Jesus) and violent Jewish unrest (leading Pilate to fear civic riot). He provided the historic justification for centuries of retaliation against Jews for Jesus’ death (Pilate washes his hands, tells the crowd to “see to it yourselves”), and provided the fateful formula, “His blood be on us and on our children.”

So when Sean Spicer gets on TV and parrots rhetoric used by Holocaust deniers to push the idea that Hitler “didn’t sink to using chemical weapons” while calling concentration camps that killed 11 million people (6 million of them Jews) with Zyklon B gas,  “Holocaust Centers,” red flags went up across the world.

To add insult to injury, many of us Jews strictly observe the holiday and spent our mornings in synagogue services and the rest of the first (and second, for some) day offline and purposefully disconnected from the world, so we weren’t able to join the conversation or speak out against his statements until now.

This has been quite a conversation to come back to. 

For his part, Spicer attempted to clarify his statements, issuing an absurd number of revisions and eventually apologizing (badly).

For me, Spicer’s apology rings hollow, for many reasons.

Spicer first called Jewish mega-donor Sheldon Adelson to apologize before apologizing to the rest of the world, as though Adelson speaks for all Jews (he doesn’t) or as if any of us care about his opinion (we don’t). Spicer’s apology to Adelson is a hallmark of anti-Semitic behavior. If/when Adleson forgave him, Spicer would be able to say, “See! This Jew thinks what I did was fine, so clearly I don’t hate ALL Jews! I can’t be anti-Semitic if I have a Jewish friend!” 

Plenty of folks lined up to be the administration’s token Jew – even though that role is already filled by Jared Kushner – including former George W. Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, and some Jews even spoke out in support of Spicer’s comments, furthering the idea that Jews aren’t ever full citizens of a country where they live because Jews are both a religion and a ethno-nation unto ourselves.

That’s literally the kind of talk that historically gets Jews kicked out of wherever we’ve lived – and we’ve been kicked out of just about everywhere. 

I don’t need to explain just how damaging this can be to Jews – history has already shown that. And history has shown, over and over, how people can be persuaded into ignoring warning signs in favor of keeping quiet for the sake of not making waves. 

Because many Jewish folks were offline observing Passover, a majority of the voices in the conversation weren’t Jewish. The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway wrote a very long piece explaining that Spicer just made a mistake – nevermind that he parroted the exact same language Holocaust deniers use – he just made a mistake, and we’re worrying too much. Because if there’s anyone who knows what types of anti-Semitism we should or should not be worrying about, it’s definitely someone who’s never experienced anti-Semitism, right?

God help me if I ever take religious – or life – advice from The Federalist. 

When it comes down to it, it really is possible that Sean Spicer just made a mistake. In his defense, he’s incredibly bad at his job. To fully understand why his comments, matter, though, we have to look at the bigger picture:

One occurrence is a mistake. Two is a slip-up. Spicer’s comments were just another in a long set of anti-Semitic dog whistles and rhetoric. That they came on the first day of Passover and following a pattern of hundreds of years of anti-Jewish violence is no coincidence.

Follow Robbie Medwed on Twitter: @rjmedwed

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‘Really Dangerous’: CNN Panel Shreds Conservative After She Rationalizes Still Voting for Herschel Walker



Conservative commentator Alice Stewart on Thursday found herself cornered by fellow CNN panelists John Avlon and S.E. Cupp when she defended continuing to vote for scandal-plagued candidate Herschel Walker.

During a discussion about the latest allegations against Walker, including that he paid for a girlfriend’s abortion and also physically abused his family, Stewart said that Georgia voters would look past everything because they are so focused on issues like crime and inflation.

“We’re seeing character and ethics are not a qualifying factor for elected officials anymore,” she explained. “It’s unfortunate but it’s actual reality… But conversations in my home state of Georgia, they’re not concerned with what Herschel Walker did in 2009.”

This earned a swift rebuke from Avlon.

FROM EARLIER: Oath Keeper’s defense may have backfired as prosecutors say it opens door to revealing his ‘death list’

“What we’re saying is character doesn’t count,” he said. “That’s what’s really dangerous. If you go down that slippery slope and say that character doesn’t count, confidence doesn’t count, telling the truth doesn’t count, what you’re really saying is, ‘Party above country, power above everything.'”

Stewart then tried to insist that people would still vote for Walker because of his policies, which caused Cupp to jump in with an interjection.

“I don’t see conservatism in a lot of this, I don’t see policies, principles, ideas,” she said. “I see people like Herschel Walker and Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert and Donald Trump and Matt Gaetz vice-signaling to their base. And all they’re voting for now is, ‘Who do they hate and are they the same people I hate?'”

Watch the video below or at this link.


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‘Train Wreck’: Herschel Walker Criticized for New Ad Claiming God Helped Him ‘Overcome’ His Mental Illness



After a damning article claiming he paid for one of his girlfriend’s abortions, Republican U.S. Senate nominee for Georgia, Herschel Walker, is out with a new ad that claims he has “overcome” his mental illness thanks to God, while he attacks his incumbent opponent, Democratic U.S. Senator Raphael Warnock, who he baselessly says “doesn’t even believe in redemption.”

Walker’s own campaign compared the Daily Beast’s report – that says Walker even signed a card mentioning the abortion he reportedly paid for – to Donald Trump’s 2016 “Access Hollywood” video, which almost cost him the election.

Back then, Republicans denounced Trump for a few days before immediately coming back to support him. The Walker revelations are arguably worse, given the GOP’s attempts to ban all abortion, calling fetuses “unborn babies” that deserve all legal protections of born human beings, while declaring abortion murder.

READ MORE: Watch: Herschel Walker Says if Georgia Voters Don’t Elect Him They Won’t Even ‘Have a Chance to Be Redeemed’

And yet, not one Republican has denounced Walker. Donald Trump even rushed out a statement supporting him.

“Reverend Warnock’s running a nasty, dishonest campaign,” Walker says in his new ad, not mentioning – not even denying – that he paid for his girlfriend to have an abortion.

“The Reverend doesn’t even tell my full story,” Walker cries, as if that’s his political opponent’s job.

“As everyone knows, I had a real battle with mental health. Even wrote a book about it. And by the grace of God, I’ve overcome it,” he claims.

READ MORE: ‘Everything Has Been a Lie’: Christian Walker Drops Damning New Video Blasting His Father’s ‘Lies’ Over Abortion

“Warnock’s a preacher doesn’t tell the truth, he doesn’t even believe in redemption,” Walker says, a claim he has repeatedly made despite offering nothing to support the claim. Warnock has even written about redemption.

The ad was posted online by Walker’s deputy campaign manager.

It was immediately panned.

CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski, the head of its fact-checking unit, says the new ad, “presumably in response to [the] Daily Beast story, mentions his book ‘Breaking Free’ being about [a] redemption story — it is worth noting the alleged abortion took place a year after the book was released.”

Speaking of redemption, Walker’s repeated attack that Warnock does not believe in redemption appears wholly false.

Warnock, who is also the senior pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, which was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s church until his assassination, criticized then-President Donald Trump in 2018 after the president called certain African nations “shithole countries.”

Trump signed a proclamation honoring Dr. King, in hopes of not losing more support.

“To sign a proclamation honoring Dr. King hours after this kind of hate-filled speech makes a mockery of Dr. King,” Rev. Warnock said on CNN. “I would argue that a proclamation without an apology is hypocrisy.”

“There is no redemption without repentance and the president of the United States needs to repent,” Warnock said, belying Walker’s recent claims.

Attorney Luppe B. Luppen expands on Kaczynski’s reporting.

“Walker published his book “Breaking Free” on April 1, 2008, approximately a year and a half before he reportedly wrote a check to reimburse a woman he had been dating for an abortion on September 17, 2009.”

Walker has stated he was diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder, which was once known as “multiple personality disorder” or “split personality disorder.”

Political consultant and former Republican, Tim Miller, now an independent and a well-known guest on cable news shows, panned Walker’s ad.

“The end of this ad is absolutely sick,” he observed.

Talking Points Memo founder and publisher Josh Marshall summarizes Walker’s ad:

“So the ad actually says Warnock is a liar and then references mental health battle to I guess imply some or all of the stuff is true. Still I used to be violent and crazy but I’m totally better now is a tough closing message.”

Constitutional law professor Anthony Michael Kreis, referring to the infamous “I am not a witch,” campaign ads, tweeted, “Did Christine O’Donnell direct this?”

University of Florida professor Michael McDonald took that one step further, commenting, “I am not a witch.”

Baptist minister Brian Kaylor, Word&Way Editor & President and author of four books on religion and politics blasts Walker.

“Ad is theological & political train wreck. He claims without evidence Warnock (Baptist pastor) doesn’t believe in redemption. And why is he asking voters to decide state of his soul. ‘Saved by Grace’ as political slogan? He’s acting like there should be religious test for office.”

Watch Walker’s new ad above or at this link.

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‘Oddest’: Legal Experts Mock Trump’s ‘Nutty’ and ‘Doomed to Fail’ Emergency Supreme Court Motion



It weighs in at 240 pages but legal experts are still mocking Donald Trump’s emergency petition to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn an 11th Circuit Court ruling and allow the special master to continue to inspect the 103 classified documents retrieved from him Mar-a-Lago home.

“Oddest SCOTUS petition. Very technical and not terribly logical,” observed Andrew Weissmann, an NYU School of Law law professor and former DOJ official who served as the General Counsel for the Federal Bureau of Investigation and as special counsel to then-FBI Director Robert Mueller.

The motion was addressed to Justice Clarence Thomas,  who oversees the 11th Circuit courts. His wife, Ginni Thomas, is an avowed supporter of Trump and his “Big Lie” claims he won the 2020 election.

READ MORE: Trump Asks Supreme Court to Intervene for Him in Classified Documents Case

“SCOTUS should send him packing,” tweets former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, now an MSNBC/NBC News legal analyst. “No surprise here, this was why he paid former Florida Solicitor General Chris Kise $3 million to sign on, no one else on his team could handle this.”

“Just watch SCOTUS turn Trump down 9-0. (Or 8-1 if Thomas dissents . . . ),” writes retired Harvard professor of law Laurence Tribe. “Will The Donald start calling ‘his’ three justices traitors? Will he say they have a ‘death wish’ as he did with McConnell?”

Weissmann took another hit at Trump’s Lawsuit, declaring it “nutty.”

“Trump argument to SCOTUS: 11th circuit had power to stay Cannon decision BUT it [could] not take the classified docs away from SM Dearie review. Nutty and if he won Dearie wd just say he won’t review the docs bc they are not Trump’s.”

University of Texas School of Law professor of law Steve Vladeck says that while the lawsuit is “not *entirely* laughable,” but he thinks “it’s both (1) doomed to fail; and (2) unlikely to accomplish much even if it succeeds.”

Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti says, “I would not be surprised if the Supreme Court decides not to hear it.”




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