(Forward) A recent op-ed piece in the Jewish Forward newsite recounts how Jewish merchants used their economic influence to break the united wall among Whites against racial integration in Birmingham, Alabama in the 1960s — and suggests that Jewish merchants today should use the same strategy to leverage a ban on gun sales to somehow reduce or eliminate mass shootings at malls:
Mass shootings in primary schools, houses of worship, nightclubs and parades haven’t been enough to loosen the gun lobby’s stranglehold over Republican members of Congress, and it’s unlikely this event will turn the tide.
But retailers looking to stop people from being massacred in their housewares aisles would do well to look to the tactics that worked 60 years ago in convincing their then-Democratic segregationist forebears to release their grip on one of America’s most racist cities.
For anyone questioning a comparison between mass shootings and racial segregation, understand that Jim Crow laws and institutions in the United States were nothing short of state-sanctioned terrorism. The untold hundreds or thousands of African Americans lynched in the century after Emancipation for violating those conventions attest to that.
Miraculously, (((brave protesters))) challenging big profits were able to change the course of history, making a compelling business case to end the indignity and outright violence of racial segregation 60 years ago this spring.
In April 1963, the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth of Birmingham led an Easter shopping season boycott and lunch counter sit-ins at downtown stores, all of which vigorously enforced segregation.
Several of the major local department stores — Pizitz’s, Loveman’s, and the Parisian — were owned by Jews. And many of these owners were members of the local Temple Emanu-El, a Reform synagogue.
On Good Friday, King was arrested and jailed, during which he wrote his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” He addressed it to eight clergymen — Emanu-El’s Rabbi Milton Grafman among them — who had asked King to go slow on protests and wait for the courts to act. In response, King said waiting was impossible and, directly to his fellow clergy, also immoral.
King remained in jail and the protests commenced. The Children’s Crusade amassed 1,000 African American students, some as young as 8 years old, who were met by police dogs and firehoses in one of the most shameful chapters of American history.
It would be nice to say authorities and businesses were appalled and immediately began to dismantle racial segregation. They did not. But contentious negotiations that would start the process commenced, with the downtown retailers and Jewish owners leading the white side.
Lest any revisionist today consider their actions a source of Jewish pride, it wasn’t. Stores owned by Jews in the South had long been bastions of segregation. Birmingham sit-in participant Frances Foster White recalled being told, when she asked to be served at Pizitz’s lunch counter, “Go where the N——s eat.”
Foster White recounted her story on Birmingham’s WVTM-TV, alongside Michael Pizitz of the department store family. In a quirk of history, Foster White and Pizitz, then in his 20s, connected soon after her attempted sit-in. He invited her to lunch, which she insisted they have at the very same store. They remain friends to this day.
That’s a sweet story, but integration didn’t happen quite so easily. The negotiators in Birmingham reached a truce on May 10, agreeing to the removal of “whites only” signs, opening lunch counters to all, a plan for hiring Black store clerks and releasing protesters from jail — though not all the store owners or city officials signed on.
Those that did deserve credit, however — and got it, if only in back-handed praise, from none other than Birmingham Public Safety Commissioner Bull Connor, a notorious racist: “I would have beaten King if those damn merchants … hadn’t given in,” he told the New York Daily News.
Full integration of the stores and the rest of Birmingham would take months, if not years in some sectors of life. And change by no means meant the end of racist resistance; That September, a bomb exploded at the African American 16th Street Baptist Church, killing four little girls. Four white men were eventually implicated, one convicted of murder in 1977 and two others in the 2000s. The fourth was never prosecuted.
So how does this relate to mass shootings at shopping malls?
I’m betting that today’s Armani and The North Face and Ralph Lauren and Brooks Brothers would prefer shoppers not bleed to death in the fitting rooms. Yet you could set your watch (available at the mall’s Fossil outlet) by the seconds it took Allen, Texas’ Republican U.S. Rep. Keith Self to tell CNN that thoughts and prayers were more important than gun control.
“Really I would like to stay away from the politics today because I want to focus on the victims,” he said. “Prayers are important and they are important in the families that are devastated right now.”
It’s hardly comparable, but the sales at 124 stores at a Texas mall are pretty devastated right now too, just as they were at Birmingham stores down the street from police dogs and fire hoses. If Republican members of Congress are so business-minded, now’s the time for those businesses to call them on it.
Senseless violence and death isn’t a winning business plan, and never was.
This writer freely admits that Jewish merchants were very content to support racial segregation because they profited handsomely from their largely “racist” White clientele who shopped at their stores.
But the second that these same Jewish merchants saw an opportunity to stab their loyal customers in the back, they did so, using their economic power to break up White unity against racial integration — not because it was “good for business,” but rather because it was “good for the Jews.”
Jews operated the same way with slavery — they enthusiastically took part in it — dominating the trans-Atlantic slave trade — and were vastly over-represented in slave ownership in the South — where only 3% of the White population owned slaves whereas 30% to 40% of Jewish households owned slaves.
When slavery threatened to break up the nation, Jews saw an opportunity to be on the winning side of the abolitionists — allowing southern Whites to take the sole blame for slavery — while Jewish carpetbaggers flooded into the vanquished South to buy up land and businesses for pennies on the dollar.
With Jewish-supported racial integration came urban blight — Jewish land- and homeowners broke up White neighborhoods by selling and renting to Blacks, resulting in Whites leaving American urban areas en masse for the safety of the White racially homogeneous suburbs — leaving Jewish merchants and slumlords to exploit the Blacks in these new urban ghettos.
And Pizitz’s department store — in one of the largest buildings in downtown Birmingham — eventually became a casualty of this urban blight — went out of business and the building was abandoned.
Many of those new American suburbs were developed by Jews — such as William Levitt — and again, because it benefited them financially, they initially supported the desire of Whites to keep these suburban areas exclusively White.
And the Pizitz family was only too happy to set up their new department stores in these new suburban malls catering to an exclusively White clientele.
But just as they did with the city neighborhoods, Jews slowly chipped away at destroying these safe, White enclaves — through lawsuits challenging “red-lining” policies, along with Jewish homeowners selling to Blacks — again, resulting in home devaluation and another wave of “White flight” to the “ex-burbs” — newer, safer White areas outside of the darkening, crime-infested suburbs.
And once again, the suburban malls in these formerly White suburbs became magnets for Blacks — bringing rampant theft and violence with them — and again, forcing many of these once prosperous malls out of business.
While this Jewish writer can hyperbolically call Jim Crow laws “state-sanctioned terrorism” — he completely ignores how under Jim Crow, Blacks neighborhoods were far more stable and far less crime-ridden.
And if anything can rightly be called “state sponsored terrorism,” it most surely would be forced racial integration, which has resulted in tens of thousands of murdered White people at the hands of Blacks who now could freely roam White areas looking for victims.
And now that Blacks have unfettered access to White areas, Jews want to disarm Whites and take away their only means of protecting themselves and their families from these violent criminals — and this Jewish writer wants Jewish merchants to leverage their economic clout to force politicians to strip law-abiding White American’s of their rights to protect themselves.
If Jews are truly mystified why “antisemitism” persists in America, they need look no further than their own history and hand in destroying this nation to promote their own self-serving racial agenda.
From their own mouths:
“As a Jew, I have no room in my mind or heart for racial prejudice. But I have come to know that if we sell one house to a Negro family, then 90 to 95 percent of our white customers will not buy into the community. That is their attitude, not ours.”
—William Levitt, creator of the model suburban city
“We must realize that our party’s most powerful weapon is racial tension. By propounding into the consciousness of the dark races that for centuries they have been oppressed by the whites, we can mould them to the program of the Communist Party. In America, we will aim for subtle victory. While inflaming the Negro minority against the whites, we will endeavor to instill in the whites a guilt complex for their exploitation of the Negroes. We will aid the Negroes to rise in prominence in every walk of life, in the professions and in the world of sports and entertainment. With this prestige, the Negro will be able to intermarry with the whites and begin a process which will deliver America to our cause.”
—Israel Cohen, “A Racial Plan for the Twentieth Century”, 1912
“A racially integrated community is a chronological term timed from the entrance of the first black family to the exit of the last white family.”
“The classes and the races too weak to master the new conditions of life must give way…. They must perish in the revolutionary holocaust.”
–Karl Marx, Marx People’s Paper, April 16, 1856, Journal of the History of Idea, 1981
“Until its complete extermination or loss of national status, this racial trash always becomes the most fanatical bearer there is of counter-revolution, and it remains that. That is because its entire existence is nothing more than a protest against a great historical revolution… The next world war will cause not only reactionary classes and dynasties, but also entire reactionary peoples, to disappear from the earth. And that too is progress.”
-Karl Marx, 1849, Neue Rheinische Zeitung.
“When we sink, we become a revolutionary proletariat, the subordinate officers of all revolutionary parties; and at the same time, when we rise, there rises also our terrible power of the purse.
—Theodor Herzl, Der Judenstaat (1896)
“When a Jew enters your house, you will shortly no longer own your house.”
—An old Dutch saying