Jewish Voice for Peace on the recent Farrakhan/Women’s March conversation
Jewish Voice for Peace is proud to be part of a diverse and growing progressive and leftist movement in the United States. As part of that movement, our core principles include striving always to work and speak out against all forms of bigotry, including antisemitism, misogyny homophobia, transphobia and racism.
The current public debate over Farrakhan is a reflection of real pain, both for Jewish people who rightfully need antisemitism in progressive spaces to be denounced, and for Black people, including Black Jewish people, who see daily anti-Black racism in Jewish communities and need white Jewish people to commit to ending it. It is worth noting that this is a particularly exhausting conversation for Black Jews, who are tasked, often unwillingly, with being the bridge between communities.
It is also a opportunistic attempt to break up a strong and growing cross-movement coalition by rehashing a painful conversation that has been happening in progressive spaces since Farrakhan first assumed leadership of Nation of Islam.
We at JVP are taking the opportunity of this moment to listen, learn and reflect. We understand that these discussions have to be rooted in ongoing conversations and relationships based on mutual commitment and shared visions of justice for all people, not just public statements and demands.
We are working to build JVP as an organization that can have this conversation in an authentic way, rooted in lived experiences, and we know we aren’t there yet. We invite our community to grow with us as we struggle on this path, because we know we will get there together.
We find the following resources helpful as we prioritize having conversations, and strengthening the relationships strained by this polarizing moment.
Adam Serwer: Why Tamika Mallory Won’t Condemn Farrakhan
JVP’s Book On Antisemitism, particularly Chanda Prescod-Weinstein’s “Black and Palestinian Lives Matter: Black and Jewish America in the Twenty-First Century”
JFREJ’s Understanding AntiSemitism: An Offering to Our Movement, and letter on Farrakhan.
Women’s March Issues Statement on Farrakhan Controversy
IfNotNow Statement on Women’s March, Louis Farrakhan, and Antisemitism
Anoa Changa: What Black People Hear When You Demand That They Denounce Louis Farrakhan