Chelsea Clinton Urges Democrats to Condemn Farrakhan for Comparing Jews to Termites


Chelsea Clinton
Chelsea Clinton / Getty Images
October 17, 2018

Chelsea Clinton on Wednesday called on Democrats to condemn Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan for comparing Jews to termites and calling his Jewish critics "stupid."

Farrakhan, who has a long history of making anti-Semitic comments, thanked his Jewish dissenters for spreading his name all over the world. He proceeded with a diatribe about his "stupid" Jewish critics.

"To members of the Jewish community that don’t like me, thank you very much, for putting my name all over the planet because of your fear of what we represent," Farrakhan said. "I can go anywhere in the world and they’ve heard of Farrakhan. Thank you very much."

He went on to say that he wasn't mad at the Jewish community because he believes that they are "so stupid" and that "every knock is a boost."

"They call me an anti-Semite. Stop it. I’m anti-Termite. I don’t know nothing about hating somebody because of their religious preference," Farrakhan continued.

Clinton castigated Farrakhan on Twitter for his "dangerous" rhetoric, saying it made her "skin crawl." She then signaled to Democrats that they should find Farrakhan's comments as "equally unacceptable" as President Donald Trump's comment about immigrants "infesting our country."

Twitter responded to the backlash Farrakhan's tweet received by saying it was not in violation of the company's current policies. "Just in from a @Twitter spokesperson: Louis Farrakhan's tweet comparing Jews to termites is not in violation of the company's policies. The policy on dehumanizing language has not yet been implemented," BuzzFeed News reporter Joe Bernstein tweeted.

While Clinton wrote a strong condemnation of Farrakhan, it is unclear what her dad thinks of him. Former President Bill Clinton shared a stage with Farrakhan last month at Aretha Franklin's funeral celebration.

Farrakhan has been a lightning rod of controversy for several people in the Democratic Party who have associated with the minister, including the organizers of the Women's March, a resistance group against Trump, and Democratic National Committee deputy chairman Keith Ellison. Women's March leaders Tamika Mallory and Linda Sarsour have a history of criticizing Israel and being closely connected to Farrakhan.

Mallory received backlash back in March for attending Farrakhan's annual Saviours' Day address, an event where the Nation of Islam leader attacked "that Satanic Jew," called Jews "the mother and father of apartheid," and proclaimed that "when you want something in this world, the Jew holds the door." By attending the event, a regional Planned Parenthood organization serving the Northwest United States and Hawaii announced in March 2018 it was parting ways with her. Mallory had been scheduled as the keynote speaker for the group's April luncheon. Mallory previously referred to the Nation of Islam leader as "honorable" and said she was "super ready for [his] message!" before an event in 2016, according to CNN.

Like Mallory, Sarsour has a history of being anti-Israel, including at a speech in 2015 at a Nation of Islam event. She has also discounted anti-Semitism, saying that "while anti-Semitism is something that impacts Jewish Americans, it’s different than anti-black racism or Islamophobia because it’s not systemic."

Ellison has repeatedly claimed his relationship with Farrakhan ended in 2006, but the Washington Post gave him Four Pinocchios for the claim.

UPDATE 3:58 P.M.: This piece was updated with Twitter's response to Farrakhan's tweet.