Michael Wallman’s letter defending the mural of the convicted murderer Rasmea Odeh is frankly offensive in its comparison of Odeh to Martin Luther King . Not only was King someone who dedicated his activism to nonviolence, he was also a strong Zionist. The “resistance” that Wallman describes, and the cause for which Odeh killed Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner, is resistance to the existence of a Jewish state in the Jewish homeland — a cause which Reem Assil endorses.
The proper comparison to the mural of Odeh is not Dr. King, or Nelson Mandela; rather it would be an Israeli restaurant with a mural of Baruch Goldstein — which would be widely and appropriately condemned. I don’t care how much Reem’s employees might smile at me when I walk in; I could never feel comfortable eating there, any more than an African American could enjoy a meal under a giant mural of Dylann Roof.