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As we’ve reported previously,the Jews for the Preservation of Forearms Ownership (JPFO) lobbies to block or remove legislative restrictions on firearm ownership. The JFPO recently filed a friend of the court brief in the landmark McDonald case, which will determine whether or not states can abridge Second Amendment rights.
Even more recently, one of its supporters mailed a JPFO handbill leaflet entitled Bagel Brain Jews Want Your Bullets and Your Guns to State Senator Brian E. Frosh (amongst others). Frosh, chairman of the Judicial Proceedings Committee, has introduced bill SB645 “Authorizing an investigative or law enforcement officer acting in a criminal investigation to intercept a wire, oral, or electronic communication in order to provide evidence of the commission of specified offenses relating to the sale, rental, purchase, or transfer of a regulated firearm under specified circumstances; prohibiting a person who has previously been convicted of specified crimes from possessing a firearm; requiring a valid Maryland handgun purchase permit for the purchase or receipt of a regulation firearm; etc.”
Stoked by Frosh’s incendiary remarks about the leaflet, The Baltimore Sun was all over the story like a cheap suit, accusing the JPFO of, of all things, antisemitism.
Unconscionably, the paper’s headline – “Anti-Semitic flier takes aim at MD lawmakers for their gun bill”—misleads readers into thinking that the Jewish politicians promoting the bill (Senator Forsh and House member Samuel Rosenberg) are subject to racial hatred, rather than a withering attack on their anti-gun control stance. An impression the paper leaves hanging until the sixth paragraph, when they finally make the connection between the leaflet and the JPFO. But not the JPFO’s reason for writing the leaflet.
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Rather than explore the issues underlying the JPFO’s campaigns, transportation reporter Michael Dresser focus on the imagery used and the “revulsion” of its Jewish recipients.
The [JPFO materials] include a flier aimed at Maryland state Sen. Michael G. Lennett, a Montgomery Democrat, under the headline “A Jew Should Not Support Racism” and a portrayal of four Jewish U.S. senators in Nazi uniforms.
Zelman said the organization will “go after” any official who supports gun control but acknowledged that the group pays extra attention to Jews who take that position. “I think it’s important for Jews to wake up, to learn from history and stop being dangerously stupid.”
An idea that the Sun leaves hanging, even as it gives the last word to the Rosenberg, who casts aspersions on the JPFO’s integrity.
Rosenberg said he had not received the flier in the mail, but had not been home all week. He said he had seen the flier on the Internet and considered it “foul.”
“People can disagree on a public policy question without engaging in religious or anti-Semitic epithets,” he said. “Whether they’re Jews or non-Jews, this is not how we should debate public policy.”
Like Frosh, Rosenberg said he would not be influenced by the flier.
“I’m not going to allow them to deter me from what I believe we should be doing, nor is it going to prompt me to fall into the gutter with them,” he said.
Not that it matters, much, but it appears that the reporter for the story, Michael Dresser, is Jewish. (As am I.) TTAG readers who consider the Sun’s coverage a bit, uh, misguided, please note: “The Baltimore Sun is committed to providing fair and accurate coverage. Readers who have concerns or comments are encouraged to call us at 800-829-8000.” If you call, let us know what happens.
Initial comments ……
#1 written by JustinBerkowitz
No question the Baltimore Sun blew it, but only because they criticized JPFO the wrong way.
The trouble is that JPFO is insane. Not only do they take the express train into Godwin’s Law with many of those ads, they say aloud what the Jewish community has tacitly agreed that they won’t do, which is play off of Jewish insecurity in society.
It’s a big mistake for the JPFO to attack their own by using their Jewish background against them. A bigger mistake still to do so in public.
#2 written by Claire M.
JPFO is known for using outlandish “grabbers” to get people’s attention. Senator Brian Frosh is also known for his outlandish remarks about ordinary citizens who value their second amendment rights, and Representative Sandy Rosenberg is considered Frosh’s anti-second amendment sidekick. Although all sides frame this as a whizzing contest, our civil right to defend ourselves is at stake.
#3 written by Jack B
I don’t think it’s “Godwin’s Law” if you’re discussing things that Hitler and the Nazis actually did. Were that the case, everything from Holocaust memorials to the entire History Channel program schedule would be subject to criticism.
The GCA of 1968 lifts entire paragraphs from a translated version of the Nazi documents which restrict Jewish gun ownership.