Open Zion

05.30.13

Sheldon Adelson Gets a Free Pass for Bigotry

Money can’t buy you happiness, but it sure makes bigotry a lot easier. Sheldon Adelson is proof of that.

Adelson’s nastiness was on full display this week at the Israeli Tourism Conference. After receiving some trumped-up honor, he decided to entertain reporters with the same old song and dance about Palestinians not existing. Sheldon Adelson is not just a billionaire bigot—he’s also paranoid and delusional. While he insists Palestinians are as imaginary as the Easter Bunny, he is still convinced that they are also all trying to kill him and his tribe. At the luncheon, he lovingly referred to Palestinians as terrorists and insisted that they are either Syrians or Egyptians. Now, Sheldon has done some horrible things in his time, but suggesting that my brethren and I are Egyptian is just too much for me to stomach.

This is the man who is the patron saint of the Israeli Birthright trip. Adelson believes adamantly that a Jewish kid from Brooklyn has more of a right to live in Jerusalem than a so-called Palestinian who was born there. Well, it warms the cockles of my heart to know that a slew of the girls on his Birthright trips skipped reconnecting with their Israeli roots in favor of banging Palestinians who were actually born there.

There were other disturbing aspects of Adelson’s luncheon. He shipped in his own entertainment for the festivities in the form of performers dressed like the colonialists during the American Revolution, singing in Italian—because nothing says, “I love Israel” like “That’s Amore.”

Adelson shows no mercy while discussing Palestinians and the prospects of peace. He claims he has never heard a Palestinian say they want to live in peace instead of pushing all the Jews into the sea. Is that because he doesn’t believe Palestinians exist so it doesn’t matter how many times we do say it, since we are imaginary? Or has he just not been paying attention to the Palestinian leadership? Abbas has been a broken record when it comes to the Palestinian Authority’s lack of desire to destroy Israel. Adelson has somehow missed this and instead remains convinced that there can be no peace with such savages.

For some reason, the media insists on giving Adelson a pass. Instead of referring to him as a crazed bigot, the New York Times suggested his comments were deeply offensive to Palestinians, when in reality they are offensive to anyone with even a shred of decency. The Atlantic went even further and referred to the decrepit mogul as a social liberal. Good morning, Atlantic, openly hating Arabs and Muslims (including the President, who is neither) does not a social liberal make. I knew Adelson had the GOP on its knees, but I had no idea he had the majority of the mainstream media at his beck and call, also.

What breaks my heart is that Sheldon Adelson is America. He grew up impoverished, pursued the American dream, and managed to become a billionaire many times over. Then he bought the political process like any good American would. After initially backing Newt Gingrich in the 2012 Presidential Race, he quickly switched to sponsoring Mitt Romney when he knew Newt had no chance. Mitt couldn’t wait to get his mittens on Adelson’s cash. Like other Republicans who’d been bankrolled by the crooked casino mogul, he turned a blind eye to Adelson’s blatant bigotry. That’s fascinating. How is this acceptable? I understand that Citizens United ensured Americans’ right to buy and purchase politicians. But what part of it allows a piece of trash like Adelson to gain public acceptance?

Sheldon is that old racist uncle who makes vile comments at family functions. Unfortunately, unlike embarrassing family members, Sheldon doesn’t just shill his hate over turkey and stuffing; he does it loud, proud and publicly. No one ever dares to stop Adelson when he launches into one of his awful rants because he is a billionaire and above the law. I have no doubt Adelson will continue to spew hatred and be honored for it until his last breath, because money talks, and in Adelson’s case, it also buys respect.