In a major speech on Nov. 29 about the rise in anti-Semitism, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) criticized the left side of the ideological spectrum for not reciprocating in solidarity with the Jewish people.
Speaking on the Senate floor, Mr. Schumer, the highest-ranking Jewish official in U.S. history, noted that the Jewish people have been allies when it comes to certain causes surrounding minorities.
"Not long ago, many of us marched together for black and brown lives. We stood against anti-Asian hatred. We protested bigotry against the LGBTQ community. We fought for reproductive justice, out of the recognition that injustice against one oppressed group is injustice against all," he said.
"But apparently, Mr. President, in the eyes of some this principle does not extend to the Jewish people," he continued.
Mr. Schumer warned that the rise in anti-Semitism is "a five-alarm fire that must be extinguished."
This comes amid the latest conflict between Israel and the terrorist group Hamas that started on Oct. 7, resulting in the largest single-day massacre of the Jews since the Holocaust, when 6 million Jews were exterminated.
He lamented anti-Semitism and anti-Israel sentiment in the United States ranging from college campuses to the media to Jewish businesses boycotted and vandalized.
He also cited examples of Jews being persecuted throughout history, from the Crusades to pogroms to the expulsions from countries including England and Spain.
In the United States, there was a 388 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents between Oct. 7 and Oct. 23, according to the Anti-Defamation League. Additionally, Jews are the leading target for religious-related hate crimes in the United States, according to the FBI.
Mr. Schumer emphasized there is a difference between criticizing Israeli government policies and demonizing Israel.
"This speech is not an attempt to label most criticism of Israel and the Israeli government, generally, as anti-Semitic," he said.
"I don't believe that criticism is."
Double Standard Applied to Jews
He also criticized the double standards when it comes to Israel versus other countries, such as people celebrating when a new country is founded but being against the formation of the Jewish state, which occurred in 1948. He even referenced the 1947 United Nations partition plan that would have created a Jewish state and an Arab state in what was the British mandate of Palestine—which the Jews accepted and the Arabs rejected.
"The double standard has been ever present and is at the root of anti-Semitism," said Mr. Schumer.
"The double standard is very simple. What is good for everybody is never good for the Jew and when it comes time to assign blame for some problem, the Jew is always the first target," he continued.
"And in recent decades, this double standard has manifested itself in the way much of the world treats Israel differently than anybody else."
Mr. Schumer then paraphrased former Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Abba Eban, who gave a guest lecture at Harvard University when Mr. Schumer was a student there. Mr. Schumer said he never forgot a particular moment from the ambassador's speech, when he directly addressed a group of students who were protesting against the existence of Israel.
"Every time a people gets their statehood, you applaud it. The Nigerians, the Pakistanis, the Zambians, you applaud their getting statehood," Mr. Schumer recalled the ambassador saying.
"There is only one people, when they gain statehood, you don't applaud, you condemn it. And that is the Jewish people."
Another example Mr. Schumer lamented was the blame people put on Israel when it comes to civilian deaths, but not Hamas. Mr. Schumer expressed his sympathy for the Palestinian lives lost in the conflict, though he acknowledged that Israel does have a responsibility to avoid collateral damage.
Notably, in his speech, Mr. Schumer made no mention of Iran, which backs Hamas and is the world's leading state sponsor of anti-Semitism.