Israel’s Supreme Court last week barred two members of Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) from running in the upcoming election, fearing that the right-wing party just might pass the electoral threshold. The court ruled that in addition to Michael Ben-Ari, who has already been barred from serving in the Knesset, Benzi Gopstein and Baruch Marzel are also now prohibited from running on the grounds of “incitement to racism.”
This decision was based on the recommendation Aner Helman, head of Supreme Court Department at the State Attorney’s Office. Helman argued that Marzel’s use of the term “terrorist dog” in referring to a Palestinian Arab terrorist constituted a racial slur. In accepting Helman’s argument, the Supreme Court placed such rhetoric in the category of illegal incitement, which can carry a prison sentence of up to five years.
The nine presiding judges also considered other examples of Marzel’s alleged “incitement to racism,” like his remark that “the land of Israel belongs to us [Jews] only, and anyone else who wants to live as a guest here is invited to behave like a guest.” The judges ruled that “treating Arabs like enemies” is tantamount to racist incitement, as is Marzel’s conviction that “with the help of God we will build a proper Jewish state.”
According to the Supreme Court justices, “such quotes … leave no place for doubt as to the depth of the racial abyss from which he [Marzel] operates and voices his opinions.”
Now, the term “snowflake” typically refers to hyper-sensitive people who are easily offended by the statements or actions of others. The things that might trigger a snowflake range from the use of gender-specific pronouns to “white” people eating sushi. According to The Telegraph, snowflakes now say that calling them snowflakes is detrimental to their mental health.
Israelis have no equivalent label for the snowflake, but they are all around, nevertheless. Just a few days ago, “Blue and White” candidate Ram Ben-Barak stated recklessly that “the difference [between us and Likud] … you want to call it right and left? Call it right and left … you want to call it black and white? Call it black and white. They are black, and we are white.” That was enough to spark an uproar among those offended by the description of Likud voters as “black.” The Likud formally denounced the comment as a “racist slur.”
That level of sensitivity has become expected among modern politicians. But are our judges now also developing into snowflakes? Just consider the idea that the term “terrorist dog” amounts to racial incitement. To reach such a conclusion, one must consider terrorists as a minority group deserving of dignity, respect and freedom, which is pretty close to what the BDS crowed is saying. Worse still, does this mean that the bulk of the right-wing constituency that has no problem with offending terrorists and their apologists are now all racists? If that’s the case, and many Israelis believe it is, then our judges are not only politicians in robes, as journalist Amit Segal has suggested, they are politicians who support the progressive snowflakes.