Teachers Union Head Ripped for Anti-Semitic Remarks American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten (Andrew Harnik/AP)
By Eric Mack | Saturday, 10 April 2021 02:17 PM
Teachers union president Randi Weingarten is under fire for comments accusing Jewish Americans for not supporting teachers unions amid the fight to reopen schools.
Weingarten, striking back at criticism of unions in keeping schools closed amid the coronavirus pandemic, was "denouncing her own people and inciting others against Jews in order to be the darling of the left," according to Conference of Jewish Affairs President Rabbi Aryeh Spero.
"She took legitimate criticism of her union’s refusal to go back to work as a way to demonize the Jewish community," Spero said, the Washington Free Beacon reported. "Historically this was labeled 'scapegoating.'
"She understands that, today, power is achieved by those who scapegoat Jews."
Spero was responding to Weingarten's comments to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency where she called American Jews part of the "ownership class" who "want to take that ladder of opportunity away from those who do not have it."
Weingarten fired back on Twitter:
"Calling a rebbitzin anti-Semitic…really? my entire life is dedicated to promoting Jewish values like tikkun olam (repairing a broken world) @bungarsargon, you know me. Why not pick up the phone and let's talk if you have concerns?"
Jewish advocates were not satisfied with her defense of her remarks.
"We are nauseated the head of the teachers union has the audacity to spread century-old antisemitic tropes of Jewish dominance and power," Stop Antisemitism Executive Director Liora Rez told the Free Beacon. "While Ms. Weingarten herself is collecting a hefty six-figure salary, the majority of Jewish Americans do not. Her dangerous rhetoric does nothing but provide white supremacists and other antisemites more verbal weaponry to use against Jews at a time when antisemitism is spreading like wildfire in America."
The American Federation of Teachers did not respond to the Free Beacon requests for comment on the critic, which executive director of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East's Asaf Romirowsky rebuked as "identity politics."
"Weingarten's comments represent a growing antisemitism within the progressive left – which spends its days seeking out fictional ideas weaved in identity politics such as 'ownership class,'" Romirowsky told the Free Beacon. "Anti-semitism is a form of racism. Until racism in all of its varieties is no longer tolerated, it will flourish."