Anti-Semites Stage a Walkout

The Wing Luke Museum is an art and history museum in Seattle that focuses on the culture, art and history of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders. It recently staged an exhibit on “hate,” which was too much for its staff, half of whom walked off the job in protest:

Nearly 30 Seattle museum staffers have shut down the art center in protest of its new “Confronting Hate Together” exhibit, claiming portions of the show “conflate anti-Zionism as antisemitism.”

The workers, who form about half of the staff at the Wing Luke Museum, stormed off the job Wednesday, the day the exhibit opened, forcing the site to close and vowing to remain on strike until their demands are met.

These employees are anti-Zionist, which means that they want Israel to be destroyed. They saw the museum’s exhibit as critical of their anti-Zionism:

Part of the display that the striking staffers are taking issue with is a panel from the Jewish Historical Society that starts off saying, “Today, antisemitism is often disguised as anti-Zionism.”

That is, of course, true. In fact, “anti-Zionism” is the principal form in which anti-Semitism manifests itself in this century. To be anti-Zionist is to wish Israel not to exist, with the inevitably consequent death or exile of its 7 million Jews. That is the position of Hamas, with which these museum workers are in sympathy:

“Zionism has no place in our communities and being anti-Zionist goes hand in hand with our own liberation as AA/NHPI,” wrote the disgruntled staffers, who work at the only pan-Asian art and history museum in the United States. “Our solidarity with Palestine should be reflected in our AA/NHPI institutions.”

“AA” is Asian-American, and “NHPI” is “Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander.” What these groups have to do with Middle Eastern Arabs is anyone’s guess.

“What is happening in Palestine directly reflects violent colonization and imperialism that has and continues to impact Asian American, Native American and Pacific Islander (AA/NHP) diaspora for generations,” the group wrote online.

That statement makes no sense, mixing histories of various peoples that are entirely different and for the most part have nothing to do with “violent colonization and imperialism.” It is actually Leftism, anti-Americanism, and thirst for power that bind these activists together.

For now, the Wing Luke Museum has been shut down as a result of its employees’ walkout. The museum has posted this notice on its web site:

This is a typical liberal response to left-wing activism. The museum has been closed indefinitely, so that management can “listen and earnestly engage in dialog with our staff,” which has “their beliefs and personal truths.” The museum “looks forward to opening our doors at a future date.”

What I really want to focus on, however, is the premise that underlay the offending exhibit, which seems to be scrubbed from the museum’s web site:

We expected Confronting Hate Together, an exhibit that explores anti-Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander hate, Black hate and anti-Jewish hate, to be a learning opportunity that invites us to seek out and understand others’ perspectives.

Liberals often try to sell the idea that everything they don’t like is somehow of a piece, and it all involves “hate,” whether of blacks, homosexuals, or whatever. But the effort to unite all non-liberal phenomena under the rubric of “hate” has, to put it mildly, frayed. Thus, for example, the Wing Luke Museum is dedicated to Asian American history, but does anyone hate Asian Americans? Not that I know of.

On the other hand, Asian Americans are viciously discriminated against by institutions like Harvard and Penn, not because administrators hate them, but because they are caught in the inconsistency between meritocracy and the quota system to which almost all “elite” institutions are committed.

And those who want Israel destroyed, and millions of Jews killed, are not motivated by an opposition to “hate.” On the contrary! They are perhaps the most hateful people in the world, and yammering about “violent colonization and imperialism” can’t disguise that fact.

On another front, the lack of success that many blacks experience today (native blacks, not African and Caribbean immigrants who generally do well) is not due to the fact that someone hates them. Again, the truth is the opposite: not just government, but virtually every private institution has its thumb on the scale in their favor. Blacks fail because of cultural dysfunction that has its root in fatherless homes, a phenomenon that has nothing to do with “hate.”

So, in a perverse way, the employees who walked out on the Wing Luke Museum may have a point. The museum’s mounting of an exhibit that tried to link “anti-Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander hate, Black hate and anti-Jewish hate,” as if these were phenomena that not only exist but have much in common, and explain something important about today’s world, was fundamentally misguided. It was based on a false premise, which the museum’s angry employees have inadvertently revealed.

Finally, I would note that the people most likely to express hate toward those they disagree with are liberal activists.

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