A July 2017 protest in front of Reem’s restaurant in Oakland (Photo/Courtesy Faith Meltzer)
A July 2017 protest in front of Reem’s restaurant in Oakland (Photo/Courtesy Faith Meltzer)

Don’t make excuses for violent attacks at bakery

Reem’s, the Oakland bakery emblazoned with a terrorist’s portrait, has a defender in the Jewish community. Recently, Michael Wallman wrote a letter falsely invoking three civil-rights leaders to claim the label of “terrorist” as a badge of honor.

He cites Nelson Mandela, who owed his domestic political success and towering international reputation not to his militant youth but to his later renunciation of violence, exemplified by his handshake with apartheid leader F.W. de Klerk.

Malcolm X also renounced militancy, for which his erstwhile allies assassinated him.

King, who always practiced nonviolence, was investigated by Hoover’s FBI but never charged with terrorism or any other crime.

Pro-Israel protesters were attacked in front of the bakery. The attackers are one more example of activists who will bend over backward to justify violence against people they don’t like, but when faced with a nonviolent protest directed at themselves fly into a rage. They use high-sounding rhetoric to justify what is otherwise called assault or rioting. “Anyone walking in the front door is greeted with a smile,” Mr. Wallman claims.

Sadly (but conveniently for the edification of J. readers), the facts show otherwise. “Activism and resistance [are] in the fabric of this community,” Mr. Wallman says. I say this community has forsaken reason.

Ilya Gurin,
Mountain View

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