Student with History of Antisemitism Elected as College Dems National VP
Democratic National Committee headquarters, Washington D.C. (via Bloomberg)
“I blame this debate on the yahood,” tweeted the incoming National Vice President for College Democrats of America.
Every year, like most student organizations, College Democrats of America (CDA) elects a new Executive Board of nearly a dozen members. Throughout the campaign period, Nourhan Mesbah, one of the major candidates for National Vice President, has come under scrutiny for a 2016 tweet.
While watching one of the Trump-Clinton debates, Mesbah invoked a classic antisemitic trope in her observance of the heated rhetoric at the October 2016 exchange. “I blame this debate on the yahood,” she tweeted. “Yahood” is the Arabic term for “Jew,” frequently used in extremely pejorative contexts. The Algemeiner reported that this was also in response to a tweet from Dima Jubara, a student-activist who has tweeted “God will kill the Jews,” amongst countless other antisemitic and bigoted statements.
CDA’s official website outlines four main tenets, the second of which states “diversity is a strength.” Platitudes like this are lovely and rather unobjectionable to most people. However, their claim on diversity is just that, a platitude.
The abhorrent antisemitic nature of Mesbah’s comment should be clear to most people in our society, particularly those claiming to be leaders in the fight against intolerance. Once again, however, antisemitism is swept under the rug and not weighted equal to other forms of prejudice and discrimination. This isn’t a baseless broad assessment of the culture. It is a fact. CDA did nothing to address this issue. Quite the contrary, as it turns out.
Wednesday, Nourhan Mesbah won her election for National Vice President of College Democrats of America.
It would be disingenuous to suggest that every member and faction of CDA was complicit in this acceptance of antisemitism. The Jewish Caucus of the organization released a statement strongly condemning Mesbah’s words and called for her to drop out of the election and resign her current position. The CDA Faith Caucus supported this effort. Nonetheless, CDA’s official Twitter feed, while concurrently quite active, was silent on this issue.
Unfortunately, instances like this have become commonplace in many liberal environments. Jewish Americans, particularly in college settings, continue to express their discomfort with the lack of gravity that antisemitism is so often treated with in progressive circles. When comments like Mesbah’s are made about any other ethnic minority, liberals pull the Cancel trigger in the blink of an eye. When comments are made that demean the status of Jews and perpetuate millennia of antisemitic sentiment, the antisemites are routinely awarded prestigious positions and platforms.
“Diversity is a strength,” they claim. Part of the irony of this whole situation is that Mesbah is CDA’s current National Director of Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility, the inaugural holder of that role, in fact. Ask Jewish students in CDA if they feel like Mesbah represents inclusivity. Ask Jewish students in CDA if they feel like Mesbah fosters diversity.
It’s become a scary time to be a Jew in America. It’s become a scary time to be a proud and open Jew on many college campuses. The college wing of a major political party should not be a safe haven for antisemites. It’s time the Democratic Party dealt with this issue that has been plaguing our culture for far too long. It starts with responding to the election of Nourhan Mesbah.
Author: Ezra Meyer
The views expressed are the author's alone and do not represent the official position of the GWCRs.