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Thanks, No Thanks
Jewish Journal (Letter to the Editor)
February 13, 2019
By Ada Horwich and Halie Soifer

If we had never heard of Donald Trump until the State the Union address, perhaps we would have felt the same way David Suissa did in his online column. While we agree that the courageous Americans recognized at the State of the Union are deserving of our praise, we feel strongly that Trump isn’t one of them.

Trump campaigned for president using anti-Semitic imagery and tropes, omitted any mention of Jews in his first Holocaust Remembrance Day statement, and proudly identified himself as a “nationalist” — a term that has been used in association with white supremacy and Nazism. Trump equivocated condemning white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville and likened neo-Nazis to those protesting them. He has emboldened anti-Semites and done little to combat the unprecedented rise of anti-Semitism in the United States in the past two years.

Jews have no obligation to issue perfunctory praise of Trump’s choreographed, hollow words, even those that were specifically devised to pander and appeal to our community. We judge the president on his record as opposed to 82 minutes of carefully scripted theatrics, and we feel no obligation to say “thank you.” Until he proves in both word and deed that the last two years were an aberration, our values compel us to hold our applause for President Trump.

Ada Horwich and Halie Soifer
Horwich is a board member and Soifer is executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America.

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