An East End synagogue has reignited bitterness over the 1991 Crown Heights race riots by inviting the Rev. Al Sharpton to a symposium marking the 20th anniversary of the bloody confrontations.We linked this last night but it's worth pointing out Sharpton's role once again.
"It's just an absolute disgrace," said Norman Rosenbaum, whose brother Yankel was killed at the height of the mayhem. "His vile rhetoric incited the rioting."
What revived the nightmare was Sharpton's invitation to appear on a panel on the "State of Black-Jewish Relations: Twenty Years after Crown Heights."
The riots were touched off when 7-year-old Gavin Cato was struck and killed by a car in the motorcade of a Hasidic leader.
Yankel Rosenbaum, an Australian-born Hasidic scholar who had nothing to do with the motorcade, was stabbed to death in the violence that followed.
Sharpton was criticized at the time for saying, in a eulogy for Gavin, that he wasn't killed by a car accident but by "the social accident of apartheid." He led 400 protesters, chanting "No justice, no peace" despite pleas by then-Mayor David Dinkins for calm.
Norman Rosenbaum said the title of the forum falsely implies the four nights of rioting were due to "ongoing problems between the Jewish community and the African-American community."
"It was just wanton criminal attacks," he said. "This is Crown Heights revisionist history," he said of the forum, scheduled for Sunday night.
He said Sharpton "did absolutely nothing then to improve black-Jewish relations -- and nothing since."
Community leader Isaac Abraham, who was invited to the forum, accused The Hampton Synagogue's Rabbi Marc Schneier of trying to gain attention by including Sharpton.
"To get some publicity for your phony West Hampton ethnic bullcrap, you invite the biggest race hustler who played a large part in those four nights of the pogrom," he wrote Schneier.
Thursday, August 18, 2011
'His Vile Rhetoric Incited the Rioting'
What kind of idiot invites racial arsonist and newest MSNBC star Al Sharpton to a forum on the 20th anniversary of riots he helped instigate?