SGold | Indy Week

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Re: “How a Little Jewish Day School in Durham Became Embroiled in an International Controversy


Last year, Front Page's Ari Lieberman wrote a story about a Jewish family in Durham, North Carolina, being harassed by the Lerner School for removing their children from exposure to some of its militantly anti-Israel faculty.

The Lerner School’s Director of Development, Rachel Sobel Bearman, has boasted membership in a virulently anti-Israel group known as Jews for a Just Peace North Carolina (JFAJP-NC).... Bearman herself authored an article endorsing a conference featuring the Palestine Solidarity Movement. PSM leaders have advocated the indiscriminate murder of Israeli civilians.

This is what one might call really, really bad. The Lerner School has ruthlessly pursued the Rachmuth family, who simply wanted a Jewish education for their children, in court, supposedly over the technicality of a contract, even though, as Dr. Pessin pointed out, it was highly unlikely to ever get more money than it had spent on this vendetta.

The Rachmuths made it abundantly clear from the start that they had legitimate concerns about the school, that they felt misled by it, and they would not pay. The school has now spent 18 months and who knows how much money in legal pursuit of that withheld $20,000. I’m not a businessperson, but I’m pretty sure that when confronted with the choice of giving up on $20,000 or spending far more than $20,000 to recover that money, the business choice is clear. This doesn’t even begin to factor in the cost of negative publicity, just now hitting the school in full force.

After a growing outcry in the Jewish community at the un-Jewish actions of the Lerner School, the institution has attempted various forms of spin. The latest comes in an IndyWeek piece which attempts to paint the Lerner School as the victim. How do you paint an unfeeling institution remorselessly pursuing a Jewish family for the crime of wanting a Jewish education for their children as the victim?

You drag in Front Page Magazine.

On October 7, the ultraconservative website Frontpage Mag published an unusual article titled "BDS Infests a Jewish Day School." FPM typically aims its outrage at national and international issues (recent headlines include "Pope Francis' Jihad on Christianity" and "Why the Left Loathes Western Civilization"). But this piece had a much smaller target: the Lerner School, a quiet preschool and elementary school of about 130 students on Cornwallis Road in Durham.

David Hudnall, who authored this ridiculous puff piece, only mentions the actual lawsuit that is the actual subject, on paragraph 8.

That's like beginning your piece by discussing O.J. Simpson as a minority role model whose reputation was dragged through the mud by the media and only mentioning on paragraph 8 that he murdered two people.

FPM targets BDS and addresses issues of varying scope from world affairs to local controversies from New York to Florida to.... Durham. David Hudnall would have known if he had bothered looking beyond the first two articles on the page.

Also, and I realize that David Hudnall, thinks he's doing a great storytelling job here, but I have yet to encounter a "quiet preschool and elementary school." I'm not sure that David Hudnall has ever encountered a preschool or a child.

What was clear to Lerner, though, was who was behind the sudden attention: Sloan and Guy Rachmuth, with whom the school was, and still is, embroiled in an extended legal dispute. (The Rachmuths have never admitted to tipping the Jewish media.)

They've never "admitted" to it. David Hudnall really needs to learn to do insinuations better than a Disney cartoon villain would.

Also Front Page has gone from "ultraconservative" to a member of the "Jewish media" cabal.

Anyway stymied by the sudden attention, the quiet Lerner School, where children make no noise whatsoever, apparently dropped its lawsuit, but is still able to refile it. Which means that the attention from Front Page, people like Dr. Pessin, Caroline Glick and many others in the Vast Jewish Media Conspiracy, helped make justice happen.

1 like, 5 dislikes
Posted by SGold on 06/07/2016 at 4:55 PM

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