JFREJ Condemns Islamophobia From New York City Council

We at Jews for Racial & Economic Justice roundly condemn the anti-Arab racism and Islamophobia hurled at leaders of the New York Muslim community and others at the hearing on Thursday, September 8th to discuss Resolution 1058A. This resolution impinges on freedom of political expression, one of our country’s most cherished values. As we feared, it has thus become a platform for divisive and exclusionary politics, put forth during a time when our communities so desperately need to build together for the future of our city and our country.

The attack directed at our beloved colleagues Linda Sarsour and Imam Talib Abdur-Rashid and other members of the community, and the silence that followed from the City Council, set a very dangerous precedent. Muslim New Yorkers are already living in fear following the murders of Imam Maulama Akonjee, Thara Uddin, and Nazma Khanam, and just this week a Muslim woman was set on fire in what appears to be yet another hate crime. Within this escalating culture of fear and harassment, our elected officials must stand firm against the politics of hate.

Wherever we stand on the various forms of BDS, we must not let political protest be uniformly conflated with the very real system of anti-Semitism, and we must stay committed to the lives and well being of our Muslim neighbors that are currently at great risk. As a Jewish community committed to ending Islamophobia and anti-Semitism in all forms, we demand that our city government lead the way.