-- John Malkovich, in May, 2002, telling the Cambridge Union that the reporter for the London Independent, as an "anti-semite," doesn't deserve to live. (1)
To question or not to question, is that, unquestionably, the question, or what?
A federal tribunal to investigate and monitor criticism on American college campuses of...Israel? A bill was passed by the House in support of creating such a tribunal? On September 17, 2003 the House Subcommittee on Select Education approved H.R. 3077 unanimously? Slightly over a month later, the International Studies in Higher Education Act was passed by the full House of Representatives? How did your representative vote? You don't know?
No grassroots organizations are supporting this call for a federal tribunal? None? The ADL (Anti-Defamation League), B'naiB'rith, the American Jewish Congress, the American Jewish Committee, pro-Israel publicist William Kristol's neo-conservative front Empower America, Rupert Murdoch's Weekly Standard, and the U.S.-India Political Action Committee are pushing for passage?
A seven-member advisory board would have the power to recommend cutting federal funding for institutions of higher education which are deemed to be harboring academic critics of Israel? Two would come from the Senate? Two from the House which has zero credibility since passing the abomination? Three from the back pockets of the Secretary of Education? You don't know who that is? Two of the Secretary of Education's candidates would have to be from U.S. federal security agencies? Does anyone remember that "blue ribbon" panel provided by the Warren Commission? How about the one put together to put the Fat Mouth on Oliver North? Did I draw faulty analogies here? What former panels does this proposed Son of Patriot Act remind you of? Is the present 9-11 abortion-of-a-panel a better one to cite?
Do the primary individuals promoting this insult to our intelligence have political axes to grind? Might Martin Kramer of The Moshe Dayan Center be such a one? How about National Review Online's Stanley Kurtz? Does pro-Israel Middle East Forum founder Daniel Pipes fit the bill?
Do you have a clue as to why it's difficult to find out how your representative voted when the bill came before the full House? Does that have anything to do with Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-Mich) asking for a suspension of the House rules, making it possible for this controversial "Title 6" to be passed with a so-called "voice vote," eliminating any official public trace of voting and non-voting representatives' positions?
Do you think it might be a good idea for you to contact one of your senators to let them know your opposition to the measure, prior to it coming up for a vote in the Senate? Do you think you can make time to undermine this slated infringement upon the First Amendment, this disgusting danger to academic inquiry, integrity and security?
What about reviewing
http://www.aaup.org/govrel/hea/2003/9-23alert.htm (AAUP Legislative
Alert on HR 3077)
before contacting the Senate HELP (Health, Education, Labor and Pensions) Committee? And, if you decide to contact the elected officials such as
Chairman: Judd Gregg (R-NH) -- (202) 224-3324 or (603) 225-7115
Do you think it would be wise to keep your comments down to simply saying you want the abominable legislation stopped in its tracks, instead of lecturing them on the evils of the Israeli lobbyists?
Do you believe I'd turn you on to The Task Force on Middle East Anthropology (MEAnthro@yahoo.com) for additional information/advice, if it wouldn't do any good?
And one final question, may I? What makes you think that I wouldn't do everything in my power to help you put an end to the overwhelming influence of these "Sons of Malkoviches" if you contacted me directly at email@example.com?
(1) Robert Fisk, "Why Does John Malkovich Want to Kill Me?" in The Politics of Anti-Semitism, ed. by Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair (Oakland: AK Press, 2003), pp. 59-62. As a little side note (drawn from Fisk's piece), "Malkovich was not questioned by the police."
Richard (The Ox) Oxman, a nice Jewish guy who doesn't mind the Jewish people having one country (but not two!)*, and can enjoy a film like Spike Jonze's "Being John Malkovich" without thinking about JM's reactionary politics/violent threats. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Ox is the founder of the Rachel Corrie Contingent.
*Alexander Cockburn's and Edward Said's objections to this should, however, be addressed.
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