Expert to address Jewish perspective on election
Dr. Steven Windmueller, who writes extensively about Jewish political behavior and voting patterns, will delve into “2016 Elections: A Jewish Perspective” when he speaks next month in Clearwater.
Windmueller’s talk is sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties together with the Tampa Jewish Federation and B’nai Brith Clearwater Unit.
The program will be held June 8 at 7:30 p.m. at Congregation Beth Shalom, 1325 S. Belcher Road, Clearwater. There is no charge to attend.
A former dean and professor emeritus at the Los Angeles campus of Hebrew Union College, Windmueller has recently published two books exploring different elements of Jewish power, politics and religion: In This Time and In This Place and The Quest for Power: A Study in Jewish Political Behavior and Practice.
Some of his recent commentaries on the 2016 presidential primary season has focused on what he calls the “Trump Phenomenon.”
“His presence has appealed to a specific segment of Jewish voters who, like their counterparts, are feeling a level of political uncertainty as they worry about the economy, the state of national security, and the impact of immigration,” Windmueller said in a recent post on his blog, The Wind Report.
However, in a recent article on ephilanthropy.com, Windmueller says he is fearful of the effect the “Trump Phenomenon” may have on unleashing more anti-Semitism.
“History is an important barometer of what these social hiccups may mean for minorities in general, and Jews in more specific terms. When the social order is seen as unraveling and when significant elements of a society are disconnected from the power structure, there is an effort to take down those who are seen as in control or perceived to be powerful,” Windmueller wrote. “The assault on minorities and the anger and hostility being expressed in this election cycle, all reflect this environment of hate….
“With the rise in inflammatory election rhetoric, the general tenor of anti-Semitism is escalating in America,” he said. “As the 2016 campaign continues to unfold, we are likely to see more examples of anti-Semitism as well as the embrace of racist ideas, making this one of the most hate-based election cycles in American history.”
Windmueller, who began his professional career on the staff of the American Jewish Committee in Washington, D.C., has consulted with government officials and political candidates and has appeared on nationally syndicated media, offering commentaries on Jewish public affairs matters.
His writings have appeared in such publications as the Los Angeles Times, Sh’ma Magazine, Jerusalem Letter, Journal of Jewish Communal Service, and an array of American Jewish newspapers.
For more information on the lecture, call the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties at (727) 530-3223 or the Tampa Federation at (813) 264-9000.