Thursday, February 23, 2012

Let's get Marc H. Ellis fired!

1. Call to Arms!

Earlier in the week I posted an item about the "Destroy Israel"
conference in Harvard, where one of the speakers there is to be Marc
H. Ellis, a pseudo-academic from Baylor University in Waco, Texas.
Ellis has pretensions of being a "Jewish theologian," but is not
recognized as such by any Jews. He is in fact a full time basher of
Israel, who churns out "liberation theology" mixes of Marxism with
anti-Semitism and calls for Israel's extermination.

I have written about Ellis before. See these:

It turns out that there is now a move afoot at Baylor to sack Ellis.
Evidently the heads of the school have figured out that their
"professor" of "Jewish Studies" knows nothing at all about Judaism and
is nothing more than a clone of Norman Finkelstein, who has already
been fired from HIS school for being a fraud and bigot.

The radical Left is up in arms about this. A pro-Ellis petition was
organized by the anti-Jewish Cornell West and is being promoted by
such luminaries as Noam Chomsky. The very first endorsement of the
petition is by Ilan Pappe. It accuses Baylor of trying to fire Ellis
because of Ellis' vile anti-Israel and pro-terror opinions (and just
what would be so bad about that if it were true?). In reality, the
initiative against him is because he misrepresents himself as a Jewish
theologian and holds a university slot reserved for someone who knows
something about Judaism. Ellis is on the board of Tikkun magazine and
everything he knows about Judaism and the Bible seems to be things
that Mikey Lerner, publisher of Tikkun, has taught him. In other
words, neither has ever read the Bible, let alone studied the Talmud.

The story of the pro-Ellis petition appears here on the anti-Semitic
Mondoweiss blog:
You can see the petition itself at
and note that Pappe is the first name on it.

I would like to propose that all Jews for Jews hold a counter-action
and contact the heads of Baylor University, urging them to fire Ellis,
while pointing out that Ellis is nothing but a fraud and a
pseudo-academic who has made a career out of promoting bigotry and

To help rid Waco of this vermin, please send a note to the heads of
Baylor University. The President of the university and the initiator
of the move against Ellis is Kenneth Starr, yes the one and the same
from the Clinton era's investigations. His email is not published but
his mailing address is Office of the President
Baylor University
One Bear Place #97096
Waco, TX 76798-7096
You can email Dr. Karla Leeper at email address: and she can forward the message to President

2. Two sad notes. My good friend Avi Strimber A"L, who ran Jewish
radio programming in the Philadelphia area, just died suddenly, at the
age of 61. Avi and I had been telephone buddies for years and he
often interviewed me for his shows. We met face to face for the first
time completely by accident when I took my son into a kosher pizza
place in Phila and got to chatting with the only other guest (it was 4
PM) – who turned out to be Avi.

Many people have asked me if I am related to the great Gunther Plaut,
who also just passed away, A"L.

Baruch Dayan Emet in both cases

I am a very distant relative of Rabbi Gunther, a prominent Jewish
leader in Toronto. He was one of the few Reform Rabbis I was actually
willing to call a Rabbi without cringing, and he was a great scholar
and mensch. I forced myself to think of him every time I was inclined
to bash the entire Reform synagogue movement. He was the greatest
exception to the stereotype of Reform leaders being ignorant
professional liberals, those who preach and promote the view that all
of Judaism reduces to political liberal fads. Here is a short bio
about him:
I met him several times and was very impressive. When people would
ask how closely we were related, he and I would both say "Not close
enough for Steve to get a loan."

There are so many stories about him that I will not keep you from your
chore of writing Baylor. Just one fast one, not about Gunther but
about his mother. At the age of 96 she decided to get her BA,
something she had never managed to do. And she did it. She was
awarded a BA at the age of 102, I think from York. All the newspapers
in Canada wrote about the oldest person in Canadian history to receive
a degree. She passed on a few years after that.

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