The Gay-Rights Movement Has an Anti-Semitism Problem

Feb. 28 2020

At gay-pride events in Chicago, Washington, and New York, participants have been asked not to display Stars of David, or have been either expelled or harassed for doing so. Last summer, Blake Flayton, when planning to attend a similar event in Tel Aviv, was advised by an American friend not to advertise that he had been there—lest he be accused of “pinkwashing.” Flayton sees these and other incidents as evidence that the organized gay-rights movement has been hijacked by the anti-Israel cause, rendering it suspicious of Jews as such:

[M]ore and more LGBTQ organizations are openly supporting boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) resolutions. [One such group], on my campus at George Washington University, . . . published a political platform of its own in 2019 that states: “in recognition of the struggles of LGBTQ+ Palestinians living under occupation, of the fact that settler-colonialism will always hurt our LGBTQ+ siblings, and in recognition [that] the pinkwashing done by the Israeli state to justify occupation requires combating by the LGBTQ+ community, we commit ourselves to the cause of anti-settler colonialism. Additionally, we refuse to endorse or work with organizations that stand in support of settler-colonialism states.”

It’s important to note that nowhere in the platform is there any other condemnation of a foreign power or its government’s policy. The only regional conflict recognized is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. After I filed a complaint with the university, the platform was amended to remove specific mention of Palestinians and Israel. Regardless, this organization will refrain from partnering with Jewish groups if they have any connection to the Jewish state.

In short, Flayton concludes, Jews are tolerated in these organizations only insofar as they are willing to renounce Israel and Zionism.

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Read more at Jewish Journal

More about: Anti-Semitism, Anti-Zionism, Homosexuality, Israel on campus

How the Death of Mahsa Amini Changed Iran—and Its Western Apologists

Sept. 28 2022

On September 16, a twenty-two-year-old named Mahsa Amini was arrested by the Iranian morality police for improperly wearing a hijab. Her death in custody three days later, evidently after being severely beaten, sparked waves of intense protests throughout the country. Since then, the Iranian authorities have killed dozens more in trying to quell the unrest. Nervana Mahmoud comments on how Amini’s death has been felt inside and outside of the Islamic Republic:

[I]n Western countries, the glamorizing of the hijab has been going on for decades. Even Playboy magazine published an article about the first “hijabi” news anchor in American TV history. Meanwhile, questioning the hijab’s authenticity and enforcement has been framed as “Islamophobia.” . . . But the death of Mahsa Amini has changed everything.

Commentators who downplayed the impact of enforced hijab have changed their tune. [Last week], CNN’s Christiane Amanpour declined an interview with the Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi, and the Biden administration imposed sanctions on Iran’s notorious morality police and senior officials for the violence carried out against protesters and for the death of Mahsa Amini.

The visual impact of the scenes in Iran has extended to the Arab world too. Arabic media outlets have felt the winds of change. The death of Mahsa Amini and the resulting protests in Iran are now top headlines, with Arab audiences watching daily as Iranian women from all age groups remove their hijabs and challenge the regime policy.

Iranian women are making history. They are teaching the world—including the Muslim world—about the glaring difference between opting to wear the hijab and being forced to wear it, whether by law or due to social pressure and mental bullying. Finally, non-hijabi women are not afraid to defy, proudly, their Islamist oppressors.

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Subscribe to Mosaic

Welcome to Mosaic

Subscribe now to get unlimited access to the best of Jewish thought and culture

Subscribe

Read more at Nervana

More about: Arab World, Iran, Women in Islam