Shalom Life | August 28, 2014

Russell Simmons Likens ADL’s National Director to Louis Farrakhan

Abe Foxman calls comparison “outrageous and ugly”

By: Ashley Baylen

Published: June 22nd, 2012 in Culture » Society » News

Russell Simmons Likens ADL’s National Director to Louis Farrakhan

Russell Simmons appeared at the Israel Presidential Conference in Jerusalem this week with his Foundation for Ethnic Understanding co-founder, Rabbi Marc Schneier. During the conference, the hip-hop legend defended his friendship with the Nation of Islam leader, explaining that just as Farrakhan had alienated Jews, Abe Foxman has alienated African Americans.

This statement has obviously enraged the Anti-Defamation League national director.

“What’s surprising is that Simmons did it in Jerusalem,” Foxman began.

“What’s disappointing is that someone who has a history of having a blind spot to one of the most vociferous and ugly anti-Semites would be given a platform in Jerusalem. And what’s outrageous is how divisive and ugly his attack on us was. And, finally, what’s shocking is that his colleague and partner, Rabbi Marc Schneier, stood by in silence,” Foxman concluded.

While speaking with JTA, Rabbi Schneier explained that Simmons was “winking” while making the comment, and the audience understands it was in “jest”.

“I find it sad that Abe would expend so much time and energy attacking Russell Simmons, who is one of the greatest friends of the Jewish people and a tireless advocate for the state of Israel,” the Rabbi said.

In the past, Foxman has praised the Def Jam founder for his work and outreach between Jews and African Americans, but has also expressed concern with Simmons’ praise of Farrakhan. Rabbi Schneier also expressed that he has “profound disagreements” with Simmons over Farrakhan, but understands that the goal of their joint organization to facilitate such disagreements.

Simmons and Schneier were in Israel to not only attend the conference, but also to bring their mosque-synagogue twinning project to the country. This annual project, brining together Muslim and Jewish faith, was originally launched in the U.S but now occurs in various countries.

Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones Hope to Co-Star in a Film Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones Hope to Co-Star in a Film TrendingSarah Silverman Wins Emmy, Thanks “My Jews” Sarah Silverman Wins Emmy, Thanks “My Jews” TrendingHoward Stern Takes On The ALS Ice (Cube) Challenge [VIDEO] Howard Stern Takes On The ALS Ice (Cube) Challenge [VIDEO] Trending
 

Iranian Official Claims Israel Sent Drones On Iran from Former Soviet Union

August 27, 2014 | By Daniel Koren
Iranian Official Claims Israel Sent Drones On Iran from Former Soviet Union

The country's 'semi-official' Fars news agency alleges that it came from either Armenia, Azerbaijan or Turkmenistan

Read More

Adrien Brody Channels Harry Houdini For Magic Trick on 'Today'

August 27, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Adrien Brody Channels Harry Houdini For Magic Trick on 'Today'

The actor is currently doing the rounds to promote his History Channel mini-series

Read More

Shia LaBeouf Calls Police On Crazed, Stalking Fan

August 27, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Shia LaBeouf Calls Police On Crazed, Stalking Fan

A woman was arrested on LaBeouf's property after he called the Los Angeles police.

Read More

Chelsea Handler Says Her Final Goodbyes On 'Chelsea Lately'

August 27, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Chelsea Handler Says Her Final Goodbyes On 'Chelsea Lately'

The late night host was joined on stage by dozens of celebrities for her final episode.

Read More

Sarah Silverman is Returning to 'Masters of Sex'

August 27, 2014 | By Ashley Ramnarain
Sarah Silverman is Returning to 'Masters of Sex'

The comedian will reprise her role as Helen.

Read More

Op-Ed: After Gaza War, Helping Traumatized Israelis Heal

August 27, 2014 | By Chelsea Polaniecki
Op-Ed: After Gaza War, Helping Traumatized Israelis Heal

The road from trauma to resilience is a long and arduous journey that requires extensive therapy and the constant support of a family, whether biological or one born out of tragedy

Read More

Jewish Hall Of Fame: Mikhail Prokhorov

August 27, 2014 | By Caitlin Marceau
Jewish Hall Of Fame: Mikhail Prokhorov

At 49, the renowned entrepreneur, politician and Brooklyn Nets owner is one of the wealthiest men in the world

Read More

NFL Broadcaster Stereotypes Jews During Live Game

August 27, 2014 | By Peter Herriman
NFL Broadcaster Stereotypes Jews During Live Game

San Diego Chargers broadcaster Hank Bauer joked about penny pinching and some other Jewish stereotypes; he's since been suspended for a game

Read More

More Headlines