Another Jewish paper published an ad by a messianic Chabad group that believes that the Lubavitcher Rebbe is the Mashiach. I assume that it was published to correspond to his Yahrtzeit. There may be some individuals who were upset that the paper printed the ad, but I think that they did the community a service by publishing it. It is a reminder that within the Chabad community there are those who believe that the Rebbe is the Mashiach. Clearly there has been a reduction in public pronouncements since the original fervor. Is the belief in the Rebbe as Mashiach lessening or are there other factors for publicly toning down the claim, such as it is “bad for business”?  Although I do not have an answer, the question is something we should have in the back of our mind.

Now to the main portion of my column. This is a follow-up to my article about CUNY law school graduation speaker Fatima Mousa Mohammed, which was published in the June 15 Queens Jewish Link. Ms. Mohammed was interviewed by Jewish Currents, a progressive Jewish publication, which was published on June 21, to give a response to the backlash to her speech. She noted that her speech was approved by CUNY Law School. If that is true, it could be a basis to strip CUNY Law School of its accreditation and/or fire the dean. Some have called for it to happen. In any event, it does not excuse her conduct. In the interview, Ms. Mohammed was unrepentant. For example, she said that “Zionism is built on racist, settler colonial dispossession and ethnic cleansing.”  When asked, “Knowing what you know now, would you give the same speech again?” she responded, “I would not change a single word of my speech—and I would say it louder.”

In the June 15 column, I called for the community to contact the head of the Bar admission committee. Ms. Mohammed’s lack of remorse makes it even more imperative now that the community acts. It is easy to give excuses for inaction. One of the excuses given this past week by a frequent critic in his letter to the editor is that New York is a Democratic Party state, so it is doomed to failure. The irony is that this writer is a staunch Trump ally and repeatedly defends him. With his logic, he should not be wasting his time defending Trump, since he has lost New York State in 2016 and 2020 and would continue to lose. Another critic, in a lengthy letter responding to my column, just ignored it, instead focusing on my one line mentioning the Trump indictment.

Ms. Mohammed did admit that she is feeling the heat of the protests in that it has affected her ability to study for the bar examination. This is another sign that we should act. Even if she ends up being admitted, I would not look at it as a failure. At a minimum, she was forced to sweat to get in. This may cause other anti-Semites who want to be lawyers to pause from unleashing their hate against the Jewish community.

I call on everyone, especially those who are frequent letter writers to the paper: If you have time to write to the paper, you have the time to write to a committee chair to state your opposition. Also, why am I the only columnist writing about this? Some of my fellow columnists are involved in important organizations. Why aren’t their organizations saying anything? Why are so few Jewish organizations, especially organizations of Jewish lawyers, not doing anything?  If we are silent, then we have no right to blame others for doing nothing. If it is not important enough for us to take even minimal action of writing to the committee head, then why should it be important to them.  

My email address is listed at the bottom of my column. Thus, anyone who writes a letter to the committee head can send me a copy. One person has already done so. Strength is in numbers.

Warren S. Hecht is a local attorney. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.