By Hannah Berman


There is an oft-used expression that goes like this: “Things could always be worse.” Never has this been more evident than it is right now. I recently vented about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. At the time, I didn’t mention her by name because of my concern about a lawsuit. But given the fact that I am merely repeating here everything that she has said herself, it is unlikely that a lawsuit will follow. The woman, who has big dreams and huge aspirations, apparently knows nothing about finance. If she were a few years older, she would be eligible to run for and possibly be elected to the presidency. That would put her just a heartbeat away from ruining our country. The thought is frightening.

The same can be said for Bernie Sanders, with whom she is in sync. But there is good news and much to be thankful for: she’s too young and he’s too old. The average age of a president when he takes office is 55. The oldest was Ronald Reagan. He was 70, which is seven years younger than Sanders is today.

Initially, listening to the elderly socialist was making me ill. Then along came Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, known as AOC, who made me even more ill. She continues to have that effect on me each time she opens her mouth, flashes her toothy smile, and makes outrageous comments. Unfortunately, it doesn’t end with her because the list of those currently contributing to my deteriorating health as well as my surging blood pressure is one that continues to grow.

Political activist Linda Sarsour defends the legality of the BDS movement which means the use of boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israel. This campaign has organized demonstrations and protests targeting companies that have contracts with the Israeli military or with companies in Israeli settlements. The lovely Linda has been a Louis Farrakhan fan for years, a man who is a bigot and hates white people and is a rabid antisemite who praises Hitler. The charming Farrakhan has blamed Jews for the problems and hardships that blacks have faced. Chances are that the troubles of blacks are of little concern to Linda, but she is no dope. She knows that there is a bonus to being his friend because he has a large African-American following and she hopes to absorb it. There’s nothing like a big fan base. Unfortunately, Sarsour has a lot of company. She is not Farrakhan’s only outspoken fan.

He is not often seen on the news, but Bernie Sanders, AOC, and Linda Sarsour are frequently in evidence. What is worse is that there are several newbies in Congress who are making names for themselves by being as outrageous as they are outspoken. It started with a woman of Palestinian descent, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. She is so inappropriate and vulgar that even members of her own party have denounced what she said. The aging Nancy Pelosi, however, in her uppity way, agrees with Tlaib by blaming sexism for the consternation regarding the congresswoman’s disgusting comments.

Sadly, the list of those we need to take seriously and to fear doesn’t end with the aforementioned people. A Somalian-born Muslim woman, Ilhan Omar, currently of Minneapolis, is out for blood and has made derogatory and scornful comments about Israel. Omar, who was just seated on the influential House Foreign Affairs Committee, claims that the Jewish state has displayed the power to hypnotize the world, and she compares Israel with apartheid South Africa. The woman needs an education, as she is apparently unaware of the fact that Israel draws no distinctions based on race and has proudly rescued black Jews and given them refuge. Israeli Arabs, an ethnic minority in the Jewish state, are afforded equal civil rights. They enjoy the right to vote in free and competitive elections, they exercise rights of speech and religion, have access to a robust free press, and serve in the Knesset and in the judiciary. To sum it up, they are the freest Arabs in the Middle East. Yet Omar’s animus and her criticism of the Jewish state continue unabated.

Last week, instead of asking questions when the House Foreign Affairs Committee held a hearing on the situation in Venezuela, Omar used her time to attack Elliot Abrams, an American diplomat and lawyer who has served in foreign policy positions for presidents Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump. He is currently a senior fellow for Middle Eastern studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. The forum was for questions, but Omar had no interest in securing information so she asked him no questions. Her objective was to use her position as a platform from which to spew venom and make accusations. The woman should resign from the Foreign Affairs Committee and then be booted out of Congress altogether.

There are multiple questions that come to mind, but the most pressing ones are as follows: How did this woman get elected, and are the people of her district in Minneapolis aware of the fact that she petitioned for leniency and compassion for those attempting to join ISIS? What a pity she didn’t remain in Somalia, the country of her birth, a lawless country often described as the world’s original failed state that has been engulfed in conflict for more than 20 years. Anyone who has the audacity to advocate for leniency for ISIS recruits would be perfectly suited to life in a lawless county. That’s just the way it is.

Hannah Berman lives in Woodmere and gives private small-group lessons in mah-jongg and canasta. She can be reached at or 516-295-4435.


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