Black Hebrew Israelites Are Not Hippies | National Review

Black Hebrew Israelites Are Not Hippies | National Review

When asked about a case regarding a group of Black Hebrew Israelites in her Senate confirmation hearing today, Ketanji Brown Jackson replied: “This case involved a small community, a cultural community of people who believe in vegan lifestyles. They call themselves African Hebrew Israelites, but it’s not a religious community, it’s a cultural community around healthy living.” 

This would be the equivalent of a GOP judicial candidate referring to a white supremacist group as “a cultural community centered on body art.” Moreover, Black Hebrew Israelites are a religious community. I used to occasionally see them cosplaying Temple priests on Manhattan corners, preaching some of the vilest antisemitism and racism you could imagine. They believe that African Americans are God’s true chosen people, the real descendants of Abraham, Moses, and the lost tribes of Israel. White people — especially Jews — they maintain, are Satan’s tools. The Black Hebrew Israelite’s messiah (who was supposed to appear in 2000 but is running late) is to one day seek vengeance on all white people. Some members of the group have gotten a head start and have engaged in acts of violence.

Also, yes, Black Hebrew Israelites — and there are a few different sects — are vegans. Now, perhaps the case in question, which seems to be about a property dispute, was decided correctly. Even racial supremacist groups have property rights, of course. But, boy, that’s a weird way for Jackson to describe them.

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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.