A Boston city councilor was slammed on Thursday for her “shocking” Tweet that used an “anti-Semitic trope,” later admitting after community backlash that she “should’ve known better.”
Councilor Kendra Lara wrote the Tweet in response to a court ruling involving a pro-Israel pledge.
“ya’ll are letting the Zionists SHAKE YOU DOWN. phew!” Lara tweeted Thursday morning.
That immediately led to those in the local Jewish community, including the Anti-Defamation League’s Robert Trestan, calling out the councilor for “a classic anti-Semitic trope targeting Jews.”
Her Tweet was later deleted after significant backlash online as people urged her to take down the post. The Tweet was up for more than 7 hours.
“It was made clear to me, that the use of the phrase ‘shake them down’ reinforces Anti-Semitic tropes about Jewish people,” Lara tweeted.
“Although that was not my intention, the impact — especially in a moment when we’re seeing alarming rates of violence against Jewish people — is the same and I should’ve known better,” the councilor added.
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Her Tweet came in the wake of the “Mapping Project” interactive map going live online, putting a bullseye on local Jewish organizations, schools and others. The website names and lists the addresses for scores of Jewish groups.
“It (Lara’s Tweet) comes at a time when the Jewish community in Boston is feeling vulnerable and under attack,” Trestan told the Herald on Thursday.
“It’s pretty shocking to have a Boston city councilor disseminating an anti-Semitic trope,” he added. “The insinuation that there’s some sort of nefarious Jewish influence in a Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision is anti-Semitic.”
The federal appeals court this week upheld an Arkansas law requiring state contractors to pledge not to boycott Israel, according to The Associated Press. The 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that the restriction is not an unconstitutional violation of free speech.
Lara tweeted, “I maintain my disappointment with the eighth circuit courts ruling and believe that conflating anti-Zionism with antisemitism will ultimately prevent us from being in true solidarity with both Jewish people and Palestinians.”