Jewish Emergent Network Issues
Joint Statement On Women’s March
“Our liberation, as American Jews, is bound up with the liberation of all people…”
January 16, 2019 – The Women’s Marches in 2017 and 2018 were proud acts of defiance against the moral decay of our nation, and irrefutable evidence that a commitment to equality and justice is indeed shared by millions of people across the world. Many in our communities participated in these marches, bringing our core values to the streets and joining a broad coalition working to catalyze positive change.
In the shadow of these powerful events, the embrace of or even willingness to tolerate age-old anti-Semitic tropes from some leaders of the Women’s March has hurt and alienated our Jewish community. Insensitivities from our allies and friends have been particularly alarming in the context of the rise in anti-Semitic hate crimes over the past few years, most devastatingly manifest in the recent terror attack in Pittsburgh.
There is no room for anti-Semitism, racism, homophobia or any sort of bigotry in a movement that aims to overcome hatred and injustice and to build a foundation of love and dignity for all. This is clear.
It is also clear that it is vital for the Jewish community to stay in the struggle for racial, economic and gender justice. Our liberation, as American Jews, is bound up with the liberation of all people, and we must not be deterred in our commitment to stand together against grave threats to democracy and human dignity. Abandoning the conversation will not only undermine efforts to work toward a more just country and world, but will also fail to help us achieve greater empathy and understanding from and toward one another.
We know that many in the Jewish community are working to discern whether they should participate in this year’s March on January 19th. This year, the Women’s March Unity Principles were written with the support and input of Jewish women, and it is by those principles that we stand.
Again, whether or not you participate in the March, we must remain steadfast in our commitment to the work of justice and liberation for all people in this country. This controversy has shown how much we all have to learn about the complex and intertwined issues of racism and anti-Semitism. We remain committed to showing up and building relationships rooted in a shared vision of what’s possible in this country. And we believe strongly in the power of tokheha and teshuvah, the loving rebuke that calls us to speak honestly when we’ve been hurt, and the ability to learn and grow from even grave mistakes and misjudgments.
The Jewish Emergent Network
IKAR (Los Angeles)
Kavana Cooperative (Seattle)
The Kitchen (San Francisco)
Lab/Shul (New York City)
Romemu (New York City)
Sixth & I (Washington, DC)