Matt Nosanchuk shares his perspective In this article that discusses the intersection of Advocacy and Zionism, and the reasons It is Important for progressives to stand united
Matt Nosanchuk, president and co-founder of the New York Jewish Agenda—a progressive, liberal Zionist Jewish organization—and former White House Jewish liaison during the Obama administration, told JNS in a phone interview on Thursday that he found Sunrise DC’s statement disturbing and counterproductive.
“That statement is the circular firing squad the right wants. What they want is organizations who are aligned around social and environmental justice to be feuding about other things. And so when a statement like this is put out, it just underscores what happens when progressive groups are fighting each other instead of the underlying injustices that they care about,” he said.
“We’ve become our own biggest enemy, and we think that excluding partners from this rally or event—any type of effort—many of their partners are generally committed to fighting for social justice and saving our planet,” he added. “I mean that only hurts us and hampers our ability to advocate for justice anywhere and in any form.”
While he urged Sunrise DC to reconsider, he felt that there was little chance the rally organizers are going to follow through with Sunrise’s suggestion to remove the Jewish organizations from its membership.
“These groups, each of them that are named in the Sunrise statement are working on important issues—NCJW is working on women’s issues and abortion justice, and the Religious Action Center, which works on a whole range of issues and has been a leader in civil-rights issues for decades and represents the Reform Movement, which is the largest movement in Judaism. And the JCPA, which is the umbrella organization for many Jewish Community Relations Councils and … has been leading efforts on criminal justice reform. These all are important issues, and it really undercuts our ability to advance them when we’re dividing each other over the issue of Israel.”