Howard Libit, executive director of the Baltimore Jewish Council, submitted a letter to the Baltimore Sun in response to an op-ed the newspaper published Oct. 23 titled, “A bump in the bond between Baltimore’s core Democratic coalition: black and Jewish voters.”

Libit’s letter is reprinted below (The original OpEd is linked above):

Sun promotes division and hate by publishing op-ed

Shame on The Baltimore Sun for publishing such a divisive, anti-Semitic op-ed as the one that appeared in its pages this week (“A bump in the bond between Baltimore’s core Democratic coalition: black and Jewish voters,” Oct. 23). How can The Sun allow the assertion to be made that Jewish officials cannot or will not represent their entire district? Especially without noting that the op-ed’s African-American co-author was a losing candidate for that City Council seat in the most recent election and the Jewish co-author is an outspoken advocate of the fringe movement to boycott Israel — hardly representative of Baltimore’s Jewish community.

The op-ed is filled with a number of traditional anti-Semitic dog whistles used against the Jewish community. The Jewish politicians control the money. The Jewish politicians are in bed with developers. The Jewish property owners are discriminating against African Americans. The Jewish politicians are fear-mongering about crime. Left unsaid is the fact that the candidate sending tough-on-crime mailers happens to be a city prosecutor. That courthouse experience is what she promised to bring to the job in Annapolis with the support of our city’s African-American state’s attorney. It is even more appalling that The Sun would publish these attacks on the eve of early voting as a means of enabling the promotion of another candidate.

As a test of whether this op-ed is anti-Semitic, consider this question: Would The Sun publish a piece asserting that African-American elected officials are only paying attention to the African-American constituents in their districts? Of course not — the piece would rightly be rejected as being racist. So why does The Sun allow this to be said against Jewish elected officials?

At a time when all of our communities are looking to build deeper relationships and fight discrimination, it is disappointing that The Sun would choose to publish a piece that instead promotes division and hate.

Howard Libit, Baltimore
The writer is executive director of the Baltimore Jewish Council