Al Sharpton to Lead Protest at New York City Office of Jewish Critic of Claudine Gay

Rev. Al Sharpton led reactions by leading race-baiting politicians, academics, writers and reporters on Tuesday to the resignation of Harvard President Claudine Gay, with Sharpton announcing a protest to be held Thursday at the New York City office of Bill Ackman, a Jewish businessman and Harvard grad who has been a vocal critic of Gay and called for her ouster. Sharpton has a history of protesting Jews in New York, including a protest in 1991 during the Crown Heights riot that featured the burning of an Israeli flag and chants of “Death to the Jews.”

Sharpton and other race-hustlers blamed racism for the resignation under fire of Gay over numerous plagiarism allegations that became public after her disastrous testimony before Congress last month over anti-Semitism on campus under questioning by Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY). A fellow witness at the hearing, Elizabeth Magill, resigned as President of the University of Pennsylvania shortly after the hearing after a backlash over the bizarre failure of herself, Gay and MIT President Sally Kornbluth to issue a blanket condemnation of calls for genocide of Jews on campus. Kornbluth is the only one still holding her office as of this writing.

Gay, who was the first Black person to lead Harvard, herself blamed racism in her resignation letter (excerpt):

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Harvard University President Claudine Gay

File screen image of now former Harvard President Claudine Gay.

Dear Members of the Harvard Community,

It is with a heavy heart but a deep love for Harvard that I write to share that I will be stepping down as president. This is not a decision I came to easily. Indeed, it has been difficult beyond words because I have looked forward to working with so many of you to advance the commitment to academic excellence that has propelled this great university across centuries. But, after consultation with members of the Corporation, it has become clear that it is in the best interests of Harvard for me to resign so that our community can navigate this moment of extraordinary challenge with a focus on the institution rather than any individual.

It is a singular honor to be a member of this university, which has been my home and my inspiration for most of my professional career. My deep sense of connection to Harvard and its people has made it all the more painful to witness the tensions and divisions that have riven our community in recent months, weakening the bonds of trust and reciprocity that should be our sources of strength and support in times of crisis. Amidst all of this, it has been distressing to have doubt cast on my commitments to confronting hate and to upholding scholarly rigor—two bedrock values that are fundamental to who I am—and frightening to be subjected to personal attacks and threats fueled by racial animus.

…As I now return to the faculty, and to the scholarship and teaching that are the lifeblood of what we do, I pledge to continue working alongside you to build the community we all deserve.

MSNBC host Rev. Al Sharpton issued a statement announcing the protest that he reposted to Facebook from a report by CNN:

“Activist and TV personality Rev. Al Sharpton expressed outrage at #ClaudineGay’s resignation in a statement Tuesday.

“President Gay’s resignation is about more than a person or a single incident. This is an attack on every Black woman in this country who’s put a crack in the glass ceiling,” he said.

Sharpton is the host of “PoliticsNation,” a weekly talk show broadcast on MSNBC.

Sharpton placed the blame for Gay’s resignation on Wall Street financier and Harvard alum Bill Ackman’s “relentless campaign against President Gay, not because of her leadership or credentials but because he felt she was a DEI hire.”

Ackman has been a vocal critic of Gay’s tenure as Harvard president in the months following her controversial Congressional testimony when she failed to fully condemn hate speech calling for genocide against Jews. Gay later apologized for her comments.

Sharpton said his civil rights organization, the National Action Network (NAN), will picket outside of Ackman’s office in New York on Thursday.

“If he doesn’t think Black Americans belong in the C-Suite, the Ivy League, or any other hallowed halls, we’ll make ourselves at home outside his office,” Sharpton wrote. In her resignation letter, Claudine Gay wrote that “It is with a heavy heart but a deep love for Harvard that I write to share that I will be stepping down as president.”

Excerpt from a 2021 New York Post article looking back on Sharpton and the Crown Heights Riot:

This month, we commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Crown Heights riot, accurately described by historian Edward Shapiro as “the most serious anti-Semitic incident in American history.” What have we learned since that fatal traffic accident that resulted in the death of 7-year-old Gavin Cato and led to days of violent outbursts and the lynching of yeshiva student Yankel Rosenbaum? The answer, sadly, is nothing much.

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First, consider the incident’s chief instigator, Al Sharpton. Helming a parade of rioters who burned the Israeli flag and chanted “Death to the Jews,” Sharpton rose to national prominence when he delivered a revoltingly anti-Semitic eulogy at Cato’s funeral, thundering that the Jewish residents of Crown Heights practiced apartheid, were only there to further the global Jewish grip on money and power and must therefore “pay for their deeds.”

Sharpton never paid for his deeds. Instead, America’s most prominent pogromist went on to enjoy the warm embrace of the Democratic Party, fêted by Barack Obama as “the voice of the voiceless and a champion for the downtrodden.” Despite being repeatedly asked to atone for his role in instigating the murderous violence in Crown Heights that ended with scores of young black men stabbing and beating a Jew to death, he never once apologized.

Other race-hustlers and DEI advocates spoke out about Gay’s resignation.

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Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), “This isn’t about plagiarism or antisemitism. This is about racism and intimidation. This makes no one safer. The only winners are fascists who bullied a brilliant historic Black woman into resignation. 2024 will be a battle for truth, democracy and our shared humanity.”

Academic Ibram X. Kendi, “Racist mobs won’t stop until they topple all Black people from positions of power and influence who are not reinforcing the structure of racism. What these racist mobs are doing should be obvious to any reporter who cares about truth or justice as opposed to conflicts and clicks.”

Atlantic writer Jemele Hill, “When white people are hired in any position, the automatic assumption is they were the best person. When Black people are hired, it’s assumed we got there because of affirmative action — which by the way doesn’t mean under-qualified. If affirmative action never existed, a lot of white people would still believe deeply in their own superiority because that is what they’ve been taught. Considering there have been 30 presidents at Harvard and Claudine Gay was the only Black one in history, she had to be extremely qualified to even be in that position. But don’t let me interfere with your racism. Go off.”

New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones, “Let’s be real. This is an extension of what happened to me at UNC, and it is a glimpse into the future to come. Academic freedom is under attack. Racial justice programs are under attack. Black women will be made to pay. Our so-called allies too often lack any real courage…They will be aided and abetted by mainstream media and “very reasonable people.””

Author Celeste Ng, “So what we’ve learned is: Bad-faith bigots pretending they’re concerned about antisemitism will happily use women of color—especially Black women—as a scapegoat and lightning rod for large systemic issues. And that people invested in maintaining those systemic issues will comply.”

NPR analyst Eric Deggans, “The intimidation is the point. Will the next president at Harvard stand for diversity? Will that person be female? Will that person be Black? If not, they have forced several steps back. And everyone across the school gets the message.”

Janai Nelson, President and Director-Counsel of LDF (NAACP Legal Defense Educational Fund, Inc.), “Attacks against Claudine Gay have been unrelenting the biases unmasked. Her resignation on the heels of Liz Magill’s set dangerous precedent in the academy for political witch hunts. The project isn’t to thwart hate but to foment it thru vicious takedowns. This protects no one.”

Last word goes to academic Dr, Carol Swain, whose work was plagiarized by Gay, “I must confess the entire #ClaudineGay affair, and Harvard’s incompetent handling of it has created enormous stress for me. I never expected #HarvardU and many scholars I once respected to attempt to redefine plagiarism because the ends justify the means in their sight. It is a sad day in America when Harvard can get faculty to compromise high academic standards so easily. This is being done to advance social engineering, diversity, equity, and inclusion (#DEI) goals.”

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