By Isaac Butler
The Times does everyone a favor by getting an interview with Jeffrey Weisenfeld, the former Pataki fixed who is at the center of the torpedoing of Kushner's honorary degree from CUNY. It turns out the guy is a racist, ultra-Zionist wackadoo. And that's, I think, putting it mildly:
I tried to ask a question about the damage done by a short, one-sided discussion of vigorously debated aspects of Middle East politics, like the survival of Israel and the rights of the Palestinians, and which side was more callous toward human life, and who was most protective of it.
But Mr. Wiesenfeld interrupted and said the question was offensive because “the comparison sets up a moral equivalence.”
Equivalence between what and what? “Between the Palestinians and Israelis,” he said. “People who worship death for their children are not human.”
Did he mean the Palestinians were not human? “They have developed a culture which is unprecedented in human history,” he said.
The scandal in this particular case is less that Weisenfeld is on the board of CUNY-- he's a political appointee, shit like that happens--and more that the other board members of CUNY listened to him about anything. And this leads my back to Kushner's questions in his open letter. What were they thinking? And why didn't they invite Kushner in to speak for himself? Why did they trust this guy's opinion on anything? They should be ashamed of themselves and should go ahead and give Kushner his honorary degree already.