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Friday, May 06, 2011

Jeffrey Wiesenfeld rips Tony Kushner again

Jeffrey Wisenfeld, the CUNY trustee who kept that honorary degree out of Tony Kushner's grubby little hands, hangs to to rip Kusher again.
If his libelous statements against Israel were made by anyone outside the Jewish community, that person would be correctly labeled an anti-Semite. When you hold the State of Israel – a nation in a struggle for its survival from the beginning, a target for the misogynist, racist, anti-western, dictatorial regimes which surround it – to a standard you would hold no other nation under normal circumstances, let alone under such exigencies – and when you spew libel against our sole regional democratic ally for “crimes” concocted by delegitimizers, you are an anti-Semite.

I would no differently oppose a racist for an honorary degree who personifies himself by calumny against a people. If Mr. Kushner were a CUNY student degree candidate, or even more extremely, if he were David Duke or Lynne Stewart or Sonny Carson or any other detestable individual, no trustee or administrator would have the right to deny him or her a degree if requisite requirements were fulfilled .

To the contrary, an honorary degree is wholly within the absolute discretion of the board to grant. It identifies the University with accomplished, generous citizens or public figures. It is also a tool which highlights the University and enhances its image in the educational marketplace. Every year, there are candidates that some trustees may not particularly favor. We can all express dissent where we warrant it – it is our right. However, every nominee that has been brought before the board, during my 12 years at least, has been approved by the full board. Mr. Kushner, however, was opposed because he is an extremist. No extremist from any quarter is a good face for any University – from far left or far right. Honorary degrees are public declarations of esteem by the university community conveyed to the honoree; for the university, they are image-building, advertising and publicity as well.
Read it all.

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At 6:52 AM, Blogger Shy Guy said...

The only mistake here is the misassumption that a Jew cannot be an anti-Semite.

There are no lack of such filth.

At 5:14 PM, Blogger betty berenson said...

Yasher coach to Jeffrey Wiesenfeld. Now, there are repercussions to irrational bashing and endandering of the Jewish state. What courage. I hope that he has begun a wave for the future; this should have happenned to others who misuse their public positions to become the "court Jews" of the knee-jerk, Israel-hating left. Noam Chomsky, pay attention.

At 5:17 PM, Blogger betty berenson said...

Bravo and yasher coach to Jeffrey Wiesenfeld. Now, there are repercussions to irrational Israel-bashing. Tony Kushner is not being honest when he describes his irrational, anti-Israel statements. Thanks to Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, he has been caught.

At 5:20 PM, Blogger betty berenson said...

Bravo and yasher coach to Jeffrey Wiesenfeld. There are now repercussions to irrational, virulent anti-Israel comments. Tony Kushner is a great artist, and an ignorant commentator on Israel.

At 12:30 AM, OpenID louisproyect said...

What disgusting racist bullshit. You people don't even realize you are damaging your own cause by your extremism.

At 7:05 PM, Blogger Simon said...

you guys are absolutely and completely nuts. You think denying someone a degree at a university because they have political views you don't agree with is a good thing?!?! Even if the viewpoint is simply supporting international human rights law? Get a grip, your extremism is a threat to israel, as it just turns people against you.

At 3:48 AM, Blogger Samuel Leiter said...

The nerve of Wiesenfeld calling Kushner an extremist is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. There are many Jews in Israel who hold views similar to those of Kushner. Extremists like Wiesenfeld are no better than those they revile. Smearing an entire people, as he has done to the Palestinians, is as disgusting as what he accuses Kushner of. There are good and evil people in every society, and the Israelis have as much blood on their hands as their enemies. Wiesenfeld deserves to be kicked off the board of trustees for his narrow-minded bigotry.

At 7:06 PM, Blogger Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

Leiter, since you're a theater expert, tell us whether your college or any other part of CUNY ever gave an honorary degree to David Mamet, who to my mind is a dramatist far superior to Kushner. Mamet as you know is also a perceptive defender of Israel. If CUNY never gave an honorary degree to Mamet, but wants to give one to Kushner, then the award is for the man's politics, not his art.

At 7:17 PM, Blogger Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

simon, Wiesenfeld believes that Kushner should be denied an honorary degree, not a student degree which someone earns by study and knowledge.
I have already pointed out that this honorary degree for Kushner is for his politics, not his art.
There is no good reason to honor Kushner for dishonorable political positions and activity. Kushner reminds me of the pro-Hitler artists in France before the German Nazi invasion. For instance, the playwright Jean Giraudoux, author of Tiger at the Gates [= La Guerre de Troie n'aura lieu pas]. Giraudoux's play subtly advocated peace with Hitler and Nazi Germany, while Giraudoux's political activities were very blatantly pro-Nazi. I don't see how Kushner is different in essence from Giraudoux.

The Hamas by the way openly advocates the genocide of Jews [see Article 7 of the Hamas charter]. The Fatah stands for the same thing, genocide of Jews, although the Fatah is not as frank as Hamas. So how is Kushner innocent when he whitewashes the Arab nationalist terrorists???


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