Days after rudely dismissing a Jewish reporter who had the temerity to ask a question about anti-Semitism, Donald Trump finally caved to public pressure and issued a “denunciation” of the wave of anti-Semitism that has flourished since his election.
During a visit to the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Mr. Trump made the comments after drawing criticism in recent days for failing to condemn anti-Jewish threats and actions.
“The anti-Semitic threats targeting our Jewish community and community centers are horrible, and are painful, and a very sad reminder of the work that still must be done to root out hate and prejudice and evil,” he said.
But for the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, this late appeal to reason was totally insufficient. In a Facebook statement, executive director Steven Goldstein issued the following response:
“The President’s sudden acknowledgement is a Band-Aid on the cancer of Antisemitism that has infected his own Administration. His statement today is a pathetic asterisk of condescension after weeks in which he and his staff have committed grotesque acts and omissions reflecting Antisemitism, yet day after day have refused to apologize and correct the record. Make no mistake: The Antisemitism coming out of this Administration is the worst we have ever seen from any Administration. The White House repeatedly refused to mention Jews in its Holocaust remembrance, and had the audacity to take offense when the world pointed out the ramifications of Holocaust denial. And it was only yesterday, President’s Day, that Jewish Community Centers across the nation received bomb threats, and the President said absolutely nothing. When President Trump responds to Antisemitism proactively and in real time, and without pleas and pressure, that’s when we’ll be able to say this President has turned a corner. This is not that moment.”
The ball is now in Trump’s court, but judging by how little he likes to concede an inch of ground to anyone, we doubt any further admonishments of anti-Semitism are forthcoming.