When “Sleaze” Is Misdirected

Dear Editor:

Just when I thought the author of the Queens Jewish Link’s “For What It’s Worth” column (not the paper it’s written in) couldn’t get any lower on the ingrate scale, he’s amazed me by breaking new barriers in the realm of k’fui tov. In the same week that President Trump issued his historic declaration recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, emphasizing its strategic importance to the security of the Jews (and Muslims) in Israel, said columnist – an Orthodox Jew who should place the security of Israel and its millions of Jews as a major priority as in the heartfelt cry of Rabbi Yehudah HaLevi’s “Libi baMizrach” – instead denigrates, yet again, the President of the United States and best friend Israel ever had in the Oval Office, disrespectfully referring to the President as a “sleaze” (a term usually reserved for ambulance chasers).

Sir, if you want to know what sleaze is, take a look at your New York Democrats this week who en masse censured Councilman Kalman Yeger and removed him from a committee for stating a fact, yet hypocritically are quiet as church-mice (I wish that term could be used for shul-mice, but I’ll leave that shmuz for the far more knowledgeable Rabbi Schonfeld) about removing the newest, but far from only, Democrat anti-Semite in Congress from the Foreign Affairs Committee. In the eloquent words of New York’s great fighter for Judaism, Dov Hikind:

“Democrats…are sending a clear message to Jews: Ilhan Omar’s boldfaced anti-Semitism and use of Nazi tropes is totally acceptable and doesn’t even warrant the threat of committee removal, but the mere mention of an indisputable historical fact by a Jew about Palestine, that is where there’s a problem! One need not agree with Israeli government policy to realize that what just went down today is a punitive policing of an elected official’s free speech! A dangerous precedent if ever there was any. The Democrats have doubled down, jumping head first down the anti-Semitic rabbit hole. In the end, it’s not just a meaningful percentage of Jewish voters they’re going to lose in 2020 and beyond, but they are also undermining the very foundations of our cherished democracy. I have one last message to Corey Johnson and his fellow Democrats: Nothing you do or say, no punitive action you take, can undo or change history. You have unwittingly desecrated a history you clearly know so little of. You’ve been manipulated like marionettes. But if you would study history, you’d know that all those who attempt to control and distort it are remembered unfavorably by history. Shame on you, Corey Johnson! And, shame on you, Democratic Party! History will not forgive or judge you kindly.”

I note that there are a minority of true friends of Israel in the Democrat Party, such as the great Congresswomen Grace Meng and Kathleen Rice, and Senators Robert Menendez and Ben Cardin, who had the courage to stand up against Obama and vote against the horrific Iran deal, contrary to our many fair-weather friends come election time (e.g., two esteemed Senators who courted the New York/New Jersey Jewish vote for Senate, yet effectively boycotted the AIPAC Conference in line with the radical left-wing wagging that party’s tail).

Sir, let me address one of the inaccurate statements in your column last week. You claim that Trump’s core group of supporters “is a minority of the electorate.” That is only true if you make the same claim about Obama, which no one would. You may have been asleep when the results of the election finally came in, but Trump received 304 electoral votes (with G-d’s help many more in 2020 from all Orthodox Jews who care about the security of our brothers and sisters in Israel and who value a safe, secure, and successful America), not that far from Obama in 2012, who received 332. (If not for the electoral system, Trump would likely have received tens of thousands of more actual votes in mega-states like New York and California, where Republican voters know that their vote is wasted). Further, per the mainstream Gallup Poll (for whatever it’s worth), in their second years in office on average, Obama’s approval rating was in the mid-40s while Trump’s was low 40s. In its most recent poll, Trump’s approval rating is 39%, while Obama’s was 43% in April of his third year, which means that with the statistical 3% margin of error, the approval numbers are close to the same.

Here’s a simple exercise, using your words as a template, to show just how insane the current politically-correct Democrat police state is right now. We can agree that there were actions by Obama that many people considered sleazy, say for example sending $1.7 billion in untraced cash to the mullahs in Iran (used inter alia to finance Hezbollah and other terror groups). Given the statistics I mentioned above, let’s take your paragraph and transpose “Trump” with “Obama.” Your paragraph then reads:

“Obama’s sleaze factor has not changed because of revelations since he has been president. His polling numbers have been low throughout. He has a core group of supporters, which is a minority of the electorate, and he acts based on what they would want him to do. It appears that Obama is vulnerable if the right candidate is picked to oppose him.”

Sir, if you exercised your First Amendment rights and published that, your beloved Democrat friends would label you as a racist (and any other liberal pejorative they could dream up) and tar and feather you out of Queens County. But say that about Trump and you’re a hero. What a hypocritical and sick double-standard. Talk about sleazy.

To your grace, there is one correct sentence in your article: President Trump truly is “a president who does not care about the traditions of the presidency.” I couldn’t agree more. Trump has abolished the presidential traditions of (i) giving meaningless promises during campaigns that they would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s eternal capital; (ii) ignoring the reality on the ground and failing to recognize the Golan as part of Israel; (iii) reading the riot act to Israel’s prime ministers any time a one-room apartment was about to be built in a Jewish neighborhood minutes from Yerushalayim; (iv) getting suckered into useless international treaties while picking up the lion’s share of the tab; (v) appointing ambassadors who (with certain exceptions) allowed the UN to target and bash Israel; and (vi) allowing non-violent offenders like Alice Johnson and Sholom Rubashkin to rot in prison for the rest of their lives rather than correct an injustice, to name a few. So you’re absolutely correct that President Trump truly does not care about the traditions of the Presidency. And at least you got one fact right. Maybe it’s worth something after all.

Shmuel Gunsburg