New City, NY – Rockland County Legislator Ilan Schoenberger joined with the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) to express his concern regarding a video on the Rockland Republican Party website which suggests by imagery and voice over, that Rockland’s Orthodox Jewish community is responsible for illegal and unsafe housing issues in the County.
The video includes a photo of County Sheriff Louis Falco surrounded by Orthodox community members with a voice over stating that the sheriff has refused to enforce illegal housing laws. The video supports the candidacy of Richard Vasquez, Republican candidate for County Sheriff in November.
As reported last week by VIN News, Evan R. Bernstein, ADL’s New York Regional Director, said “We find the use of an image of visibly identifiable Jews in this campaign video to be deeply troubling, highly offensive, and inappropriate, as it essentially blames the Orthodox Jewish community for the substandard and illegal housing problems in Rockland.”
“The Republican Party,” said Schoenberger, “by posting this on its website has shown that they agree and support this negative stereotype of religious Jews and intend to use these harmful portrayals for their political campaign purposes. This is inappropriate and offensive.”
Schoenberger added, “I wholeheartedly support Mr. Bernstein’s statement, ‘Voters should be encouraged to make decisions about candidates based upon their qualifications, political positions and not on the basis of race or religion, without offensive insertions ascribing blame on an issue to a particular religious group’.”
Legislator Schoenberger has sponsored a memorializing resolution to formally support the ADL position, and that will appear on the agenda of an upcoming Legislature committee.