Mitch Albom, editorial: The “lukewarm” response to DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic messages “should infuriate us”

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Famous sports writer and author Mitch Albom has criticized the “lukewarm” response to anti-Semitic messages from Philadelphia Eagles catcher DeSean Jackson.

“These days, you can lose your job for a tweet. You can lose it for a retweet, or a spouse’s tweet. If your post is considered racist or hateful, it can lead to an onslaught of condemnation, followed quickly by an erasure of your reputation and career, “Albom said in the Detroit Free Press on Sunday. “So it may seem surprising that after NFL star DeSean Jackson posted several anti-Semitic messages on Instagram last weekend – including a quote he (wrongly) attributed to Adolf Hitler claiming that the Jews “Will extort America” ​​and “will have a plan for world domination” – there has been no massive outrage from its industry and no immediate punishment from its team. ”

Albom criticized the Eagles for his soft and delayed punishment of Jackson, which was an “undisclosed fine,” as well as the defense that Jackson received from other athletes such as former NBA player Stephen Jackson and New Brunswick player. Orleans Saints Malcolm Jenkins, who dismissed the controversy as a distraction. ”

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“The reason why the Jewish people are not surprised by hate speech is that anti-Semitism is the oldest form of sectarianism in the world,” writes Albom. “It goes back to biblical times and has never taken a break. ”

The columnist then summarized the centuries of hatred that the Jewish people had to endure, from slavery in Egypt and massacres during the crusades, to the six million people who were killed during the Shoah.

“The truth of Jackson’s slap is probably this: anti-Semitism does not cause the same fury as other prejudices. There is rarely an outcry as strong or sustained when a synagogue is attacked or a Jew is killed for his faith. Or the whole Jewish population is slandered, “wrote Albom. “This was reflected in the lukewarm reaction to DeSean Jackson, and in Jenkins’ statements that ‘the Jews are not our problem’ and ‘Let us not lose sight of what the problem really is …’ No, Malcolm, that’s what the problem “really is”. Intolerance. Stereotyping. Repeat the hate rhetoric of others. Everything comes together, and if you choose one, you should choose the other, especially when it’s in your own industry. ”

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He continued, “‘Silence is respected.’ It’s a popular phrase today. But you cannot be selective with your noise. Not against hate. For all the sectarian filth raised against the Jews last week, it was extremely calm there. We should think twice about why. ”

Jackson drew many critics on his Instagram posts who praised Louis Farrakhan, who has made a number of anti-Semitic comments over the years, and shared a quote falsely attributed to Adolf Hitler. Jackson has since apologized.

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