Donald Trump is still demonizing billionaire George Soros and other “globalists,” just as he did in a 2016 campaign commercial with anti-Semitic dog-whistles, or at least something very close.
But Trump is picky about which Jewish billionaires to smear, and for good reason.
None other than Sheldon Adelson, the Jewish casino billionaire, helped finance our demagogic President’s rise to power. In this election cycle, he is the number one donor to the Republican Party in its Trumpist incarnation. Adelson has splurged at least $55 million on the sullied GOP through two groups.
As a fellow Jew, I’ve got some advice for the 85-year-old Adelson, borrowed from Nancy Reagan’s anti-drug campaign. “Just say no” to Trump and GOP fundraisers.
Vile anti-Semitism has been spiking under Trump, and even if Adelson and other Jewish Trumpists deny the existence of a provable cause-effect, they should at least concede the probability of one.
“Jews make up only about 2 percent of the U.S. population,” the AP’s David Crary writes, “but in annual FBI data they repeatedly account for more than half of the Americans targeted by hate crimes committed due to religious bias. The Anti-Defamation League identified 1,986 anti-Semitic incidents in the U.S. in 2017, up from 1,267 in 2016, and also reported a major increase in anti-Semitic online harassment.”
First Donald Trump spoke of “very fine people on both sides” in the 2017 Charlottesville incident where alt-right bigots clashed with counter-protestors, leaving one of the latter dead. Now comes news of another tragedy. An anti-Semitic truck driver killed 11 Jews in the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh—the worst massacre of Jews in American history. Even if Trump didn’t fire off the AR-25 assault rifle used in the attack, Trump just might have blood on his undersized hands.
With the full power of his office, the President has been spreading the false rumor that a raggedy band of would-be immigrants poses a serious threat to the United States. Fox News and other right-wing media have repeated the canard again and again.
The man charged with the massacre at the synagogue, Robert Gregory Bowers, made his intention clear afterward in this chilling statement: “I just want to kill Jews.” And guess who conspiracists like Bowers apparently hold responsible for the migrant caravan about to “invade” the United States and end their Aryan way of life: Jews. Bowers is believed to have written online that the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) “likes to bring invaders in that kill our people.”
While Donald Trump was too much of a “globalist” for Bowers’ taste, the President’s anti-immigrant message must have resonated with the suspected killer, regardless of whether the Trump mentioned HIAS.
I won’t buy Trump’s excuse that Bowers did not support him. Nor does it matter that the trucker was crazy. Deranged or not, he left his victims just as dead. The point is, the President has loosed the demons of hate. It makes not a whit of difference that Trump’s daughter, son-in-law and Kushner grandchildren are Jewish. Like any other psychopath, Trump cares mainly about Number One, and if anything, he must enjoy the ability to hide behind them. Keep in mind that Trump once kept of collection of Hitler’s speeches near his bed. Perhaps one of the few books Trump has loved other than his own ghost-written works?
You can shrug off My New Order as a chance for the Trump to learn the art of propaganda from a master—or you can say that the book was merely a conversationpiece given by a friend. Still, irrefutably, Trump’s own words and deeds are those of a Hitler- or Mussolini-style fascist in spirit at the very least. Here is a Biff Tannen-style bully who punched an elementary school teacher in the face and has been quoted as saying he is the same man today as when he was young.
Trump has praised a politician for bodyslamming a reporter and continues to call journalists “enemies of the people” despite the risk of lives lost. He has warned against Mexican “rapists” and, pandering to anti-Muslim sentiments, says Middle Eastern people could have been in the migrant caravan. He calls himself a “nationalist,” a term dear to many fascists: no need for “white” in front of it. How long until we Jews are Trump’s major targets—not just the dog-whistled kind—to satisfy the prejudices of The Base? Maybe not next month or next year, and maybe never, but a future Trump-style fascist could yet arise with an urge to impose on us a bloody “final solution.” The additional havoc that automation may wreak on the U.S. labor force could eventually stir up The Base with Dachau-lethal results. Among the jobs imperiled eventually could be those of truckers like Robert Bowers.
So, Mr. Adelson, please abandon your hopes of influencing Trump’s Israeli policies via your massive campaign donations. How about the long-term safety and well-being of your fellow Jews here in the United States? If nothing else, as a $30-billion man, think of practicalities at the existential level: future fascist bigots just might want to kill you and claim your “Jewish billions” for themselves.
Photo via Wikipedia of “Sheldon Adelson, chairman of Las Vegas Sands and Hong Kong-listed subsidiary Sands China. Photo taken 19 June 2010 in Hong Kong at a press conference held at the Four Seasons Hotel, following China Sands AGM.” Creative Commons licensed.