THE BLOG
07/10/2007 06:48 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Abraham Foxman Should Be Fired

There are so many reasons to hate Abraham Foxman, the executive director of the once-proud Anti-Defamation League, but surely the best reason has to be his collusion with the Turkish government to perpetuate denial of its genocide against Armenians nearly 100 years ago. The Israeli government has long been part of this historical fudge, but at least it has the excuse -- however meager -- of Realpolitik: Bush goes boating with Putin, Israel dallies with genocide-denying Turks, China and Somalia do their petro-dance...and so it goes. But for a non-profit like the ADL, which in fact has done important work to combat not just anti-Semitism but other forms of ethnocentrism and racism, to shill for Holocaust-deniers (yes, the Armenian genocide can fairly be called a Holocaust) is inexcusable. He should be fired.

I am agnostic on the question of whether this malefaction in Jewish communal organizations drives Jews away from religious affiliation. The bigger culprits, it seems to me, are the weakness of many clergy and -- above all -- Jews' collective success in a liberal democracy, which makes assimilation possible. For that, I have no good answers. But to the extent that young Jews may be skeptical of the elders who claim to speak for them, Foxman only exacerbates the alienation.

Remember the skit on Chappelle's Show in which ethic groups get to draft new members and propose trades? Well, I am prepared to offer Foxman on the cheap. Would the Chinese-Americans like him? The Boston Irish? The Amish? You don't even have to send us anybody now. We'll trade for a player, or a team of oxen, to be named later.