FIU Democratic Socialists Host Virtual Antisemitism Education Event

Screenshot of Fighting Antisemitism Panel

Stephanie Valentine/ Staff Writer

FIU’s Young Democratic Socialists of America (YDSA) chapter held a panel December 28, discussing the history behind antisemitic discrimination.

YDSA is a student organization that seeks to promote the democratic organization of workers and students, aiming for a more just society according to their mission statement.

Emma Nissim, vice president of the Jewish democratic socialist and a junior at FIU majoring in political science led the event through Zoom.

Nissim started off with a lecture on the United States’ history of discrimination against its Jewish population. She argued that socialism is ideologically consistent with the teachings of the Talmud, the primary source of Jewish religious law and theology. 

She also mentioned, many central figures of 20th-century socialist academics were Jews or of Jewish descent, including communist writer Karl Marx, socialist scientist Albert Einstein, and anarchist activist Emma Goldman.

“Religious hate crimes against Jews are the second-highest after Islamophobic based hate crimes,” Nissim explained, adding that the increase in fascism has led to a higher number of hate crimes against Jewish people and Mosques in the United States.

This trend is evident in Miami as well, added Nissim.

“There has been a recent push in 2020 in Miami to spread antisemitic conspiracy theories, likely as an election tactic within the LatinX community,” Nissim said, referring to a Libre column published in El Nuevo Herald in September. 

“The segment was about 40 pages and it went on to be deeply and utterly racist and antisemitic and attempting to defame Jews and the black lives movement and pose them as threats to the American way,” she added.

Nissim also brought up a segment on WSUA Caracol, a spanish radio station which featured antisemetic election propaganda claiming that Biden is leading a revolution directed by racial minorities, atheists and antichristians.

“Sometimes the messages are more subtle,” said Nissim.

“There are many antisemitic dog whistles that are meant to both connect other white supremacists and neo-Nazis and also desensitize people to fascism as a whole,” Nissim said, as she explained the racial rhetoric present online today.

A dog whistle is a subtle political message which is intended for and can only be understood by those within a group. These symbols can be used to target individuals and perpetuate virtual hate speech.

“There’s the six parentheses or the Echo, which is used to signal to other white supremacists that the person, whoever’s name is in between those parentheses is a Jew,” Nissim Explained. 

She went on to condemn the right-wings extremists mobilizing social media to propagate conspiracy theories that scapegoats Jewish people in place of adequate class analysis. 

“This is what leads so many people, especially young people to hold these antisemitic and overall white supremacist views through slowly being desensitized by edgy humor on the internet,” Nissim said.

For more information about FIU’s Young Democratic Socialists of America, click here.

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