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Kudos To Jeffrey Wiesenfeld

May 10, 2011 3:34 pm 9 comments

CUNY trustee Jeffrey Wiesenfeld.

The world is truly a crazy place – a university wants to bestow an honorary degree to an individual with political viewpoints well beyond the pale of decency or respectability. The fact that Tony Kushner happens to be a Pulitzer Prize winning playwright doesn’t mean that his offensive, racist and radical political viewpoints can be ignored – in fact, he uses his bully pulpit as a playwright to push his political agenda, witness his public statements on various topics.

Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, someone who I have known for a number of years, as a friend and business colleague, is the subject of considerable media attention this week, as a trustee for CUNY (the City University of New York), where he voted against bestowing the said honorary degree to Tony Kushner – he cited a litany of Anti-Semitic and Anti-Israel statements in urging CUNY not to go ahead.  Lets remember an honorary degree is exactly that – one which honors people for success, not one which is earned. A University, a place of higher learning seeks to be a model of decency, not endorsing a position which calls into question the legitimacy of a UN member state and falsely accusing its founders of ethnic cleansing.

One wonders if CUNY would dream of honoring someone who says the Confederates and slavery should never have been defeated, or America is committing ethnic cleansing in Iraq today. Mr. Wiesenfeld should be commended for speaking truth to power, and holding the University to standards of decency, and respect.

Among the statements attributed to Kushner:

  • “[Israel was] founded in a program that, if you really want to be blunt about it, was ethnic cleansing..” — Yale Israel Review
  • “..I have a problem with the idea of a Jewish state. It would have been better if it never happened.” — The New York Sun
  • Ha’aretz reporter: But you are saying that the very creation of Israel as a Jewish state was not a good idea. Kushner: I think it was a mistake.

Wiesenfeld should be commended and honored for speaking up and taking a courageous stance.

I would recommend that all readers make an effort to send a letter to CUNY in support of Wiesenfeld – Chairman Benno Schmidt of CUNY can be reached at:

On a related matter, I read an Interesting Piece by Shmuel Sackett which spoke of Osama Bin Laden’s big mistake – He didn’t kill just Jews.  According to Sackett, “one thing made Osama bin Laden public enemy number one. One thing made him a target for America’s hit squad. One thing – and only one thing – made his assassination justified and praised by world leaders. He didn’t just kill Jews. Had he limited his terrorism to Jews only, he would not have been targeted. The same world leaders who today take great pride in his death would have celebrated his life……He would have been invited to the United Nations. He would have had a worldwide speaking tour. He would have won the Nobel peace prize.”

Ronn Torossian is the CEO of 5WPR, 1 of the 25 largest PR Agencies in the United States.


  • Egbert Souse

    Kushner’s statements hardly amount to anything racist, offensive or radical. He has a point, but the knee-jerk Zionist Ronn Torrossian defends Israel no matter what. He’s half-literate to boot.

  • Email the head of CUNY and all the rest to give Weisenfeld a promotion

  • Tabitha Korol

    I’m proud of Weisenfeld to have the courage, the intelligence, and the determination to stand up against those who would present an award to a virulent antiSemite – to the likes of Kushner whose statements have crossed the lines of treason of his own people and heritage. If Kushner is deserving of an award, then perhaps we should consider posthumous awards for Adolph Hitler for his oratorio or Muhammad for swordsmanship. Is it no longer necessary to consider the value of the whole person when honoring one facet, or is the CUNY board willing to admit this would happen only in the case of a Jew against Israel? We live in evil times, and Weisenfeld maintains the old standards of ethics while elsewhere they are being usurped by a very different kind of humanity. In the words of Imam Rauf, our country is becoming “sharia compliant.”

  • Mendy glicks

    Anyone who hates Jews is an instant candidate for academia to love – maybe the PR firm should raise that issue

  • Kyle Burman

    Thank goodness for Kushner. He is one of the best authors of our day.

    I have never been to this website before, but from the responses to this article and the article itself, I conclude that this site is for crazies.

  • Kudos to Wiesenfeld. Kushner is just another far lefty garden variety bigot, the type that thrives in universities and in the main street media. He also hates Catholics and has ridiculed the Catholic Church. He is unworthy of the word “honor” which is what an honorary degree is supposed to be. I am a graduate of Brooklyn College. The other disgrace is that Eric Alterman, a so-called journalist who write for Nation magazine, the Stalinist journal headed by fake marxist Katrina Van Den Heuven. Alterman is another one who hates Israel, Christians and Jews who actually practice Judaism. Alterman teaches at Brooklyn College. I can imagine what goes on in his class.

  • Ronn Torossian thanks for this important post

  • Rachel Isaacs

    Wiesenfeld is a gutsy guy, need more like him!

  • Where are all the Jewish defense organizations ? Amazingly silent

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