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Unlikely source of racism spurs Jews January 28, 2007

Posted by C.A.R.D in Act Now to Stop War and End Racism, ADL, ANSWER, Anti-Defamation League, Anti-Semitic, Anti-Semitism, Card, Citizens Against Racism and Discrimination, Discriminate, Discrimination, Israel, Israel's human rights, Jew, Jewish, Jews, Jonathan Bernstein, Lebanon, Nazi, nazis, Racism, Racist, Zionism, Zionist.
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Growing complaints about Israel-bashing, plus Jews being increasingly compared to Nazis during political rallies, has spurred the Anti-Defamation League to hold its first-ever conference on how people can protect themselves against anti-Semitism — from the liberal left.

Anti-Semitism is increasingly seen and heard at liberal events, organizers say, including at anti-war rallies, at labor meetings and even on college campuses. It’s making participation uncomfortable for Jews, who have historically been Democrats.

“We heard from so many people who feel ostracized and alone and don’t really know what to do with this problem,” said Jonathan Bernstein, director of the ADL regional office in San Francisco. People shouldn’t “have to pick between being Jewish and whatever worthwhile cause.”

Sunday’s conference in San Francisco focuses on the problem and teaches coping strategies. The event, which is expected to sell out, will offer talks ranging from “Emphasizing What’s Right in Israel” to “On the Spot Responses to Hurtful Language.”

However, while hateful speech is odious, some critics say groups like ADL are muffling debate by branding almost all criticism of Israel as anti-Semitic.

“It’s like saying anyone who attacks U.S. foreign policy is un-American,” said Saul Kanowitz, an activist with ANSWER, which organizes anti-war rallies. ANSWER stands for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism.

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