To the editor:
As New Yorkers unite in publicly demonstrating their disgust and opposition to racism — as most recently manifested in the outrage publicly committed against George Floyd — another form of racism is blithely ignored: anti-Semitism.
Only a gossamer veil conceals the truth that unfounded attacks against Israel as “fascist” or like tropes are really the clarion call to like-minded racists. Sadly, today’s extremists of left and right have become as one in that effort. And their target in our community is Congressman Eliot Engel.
Eliot Engel is not just a staunch supporter of Israel and leader in the fight against anti-Semitism, Rep. Engel has been one of the staunchest friends of labor — especially of those public employees who have risked their lives in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, and who daily fight fires, protect lives and property, pick up the tons of refuse that would otherwise engulf us.
And most importantly, those who teach our kids in the New York City public schools — teachers and schools which need and deserve increased financial and public support.
I know after decades of vigorously representing the interests of those essential public servants that Eliot Engel has always been there for us, while his opponents and advocates are among the missing.
His extremist opponents would have you believe that Eliot Engel would have served us better if, in the COVID-19 lockdown, he had roamed the empty streets of his district, hustling for votes and seductively promising anything that may appeal (like so many of the political idols of Engel’s opponents are doing), instead of doing what a congressman is supposed to do — fight for our interests in Washington.
While others would jump at any excuse to run away, Eliot Engel — the chair of the vital House Foreign Affairs Committee — stayed in Washington to pilot the fight to hold Secretary of State Mike Pompeo responsible for using public servants as errand boys, and for undermining decades of goodwill of allies and respect from adversaries.
Importantly, Congressman Engel chose to tirelessly work to expose the mindless misconduct of a president who dishonors us all, while his detractors were “otherwise occupied” or scavenging for photo-ops.
Eliot Engel deserves applause and re-election for his efforts, not the baseless untruths and insults of hustlers who seek to deceive and their surrogates: overly ambitious politicians devoid of scruples.
Finally, while others may offer promises, Eliot Engel always has been on the forefont of advancing this community’s legitimate interests, in advancing affordable and middle income housing, in the war against blight, and to protect the environment.
He deserves re-election.