- - Wednesday, May 2, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The hardest thing a politician or office-holder can do when his mouth gets him in trouble is to shut up and hope someone else will change the subject.

Trayon White is the member of the District Council in Washington who delivered what he thought was a lesson in history, economics and natural science in mid-March, explaining that an unexpected snowfall was the work of “the Rothschilds controlling the climate,” crediting the famous European banking family with more power over the climate than the Rothschilds could imagine they had.

Conspiracy nuts have long construed anti-Semitic nonsense with the Rothschilds, perhaps because they were rich and Jewish, and the rich, Jewish and gentile are often perceived to be more powerful than they actually are. Mr. White’s colleagues on the Council and Jewish leaders, including several rabbis, called him out for his rant, and for his part Mr. White said he didn’t know anti-Semitism was, well, anti-Semitic. He made a show of making amends, even attending a Passover seder and breakfasting with Jewish leaders on bagels and lox. He toured the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, but bailed out halfway through the tour without explaining why.

Then a video surfaced of a meeting in February of several top city officials, showing Mr. White returning to his notion of Rothschild control of the world, this time that the Jewish bankers control not only the weather but the World Bank and the U.S. government. The assembled city officials, including Mayor Muriel Bowser, were shown laughing it off, but many Jews and others were further upset.

When friends of Mr. White organized a rally in his support outside the District Building, and one of the speakers, a representative of Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, called one of the two Jewish members of the Council “a fake Jew.” There were calls for the organizer of the rally, a member of the board of the District Public Housing Authority, to resign, which he eventually did. The District Council called an impromptu press conference, where the Council chairman, Phil Mendelson, said “intolerant speech … has no place in our city.”

But, alas, it apparently does. Mr. White, it emerged, even contributed $500 from his contingency fund to Mr. Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam. The subject, obviously, is still not changed.

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