In an effort to prevent youth from emulating rapper Kanye (Ye) West and his far-right white friends in voicing their anti-Semitic rhetoric, Spencer Leak, Sr., president/CEO of the Leak Funeral Homes, is airing an hour-long 1390 AM broadcast with a Black rabbi who is calling for a summit of all religious leaders to combat the rise in hate crime against Jews.
To educate African Americans about the historical kinship between Blacks and Jews, Rabbi Capers Funnye will be the keynote speaker on Leak Sr.’s 9 a.m., “It’s Time Truth Speaks,” broadcast on December 18, at the Leak Funeral home.
Leak said, “We are doing this because of Kanye West and Kyrie Irving, two very popular individuals in the Black community, who have adopted and are promoting this anti-Semitism. I am concerned that young people may be influenced by these stars if they hear this anti-Semitic garbage and emulate them. I don’t want that.
“I marched with Dr. King. I chauffeured Dr. King and there were always rabbis and students supporting us,” Leak said.
He pointed to the late Rabbi Robert Marx from KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation in Hyde Park who always supported Dr. King. “The Jewish community and young people need to know the civil rights history abou t how Jews supported and risked their lives while marching with Dr. King.
“I am trying to promote and introduce the Upstanders who are non-Jews and who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust,” Leak said.
“They were called this, as opposed to bystanders who watched what happened to the Jews and did nothing about it.
“We are promoting Upstanders in the Black community for the purpose of supporting Jews.
“The Upstanders are non-Jews, gentiles, who risked their lives to save Jews. Leak wants the Upstanders to work with Black youth in Chicago so they can know the Jews who were with Dr. King and so they can have a more positive relationship between themselves and the Jews.”
In an interview with the Chicago Crusader, Leak, Rabbi Capers Funnye, head of Beth Shalom B’nai Zaken Ethiopian Hebrew Congregation, and Reverend Paul Jakes, pastor of New Tabernacle of Faith Baptist Church, said they are outraged over West and his high-profile friends who are making anti-Semitic remarks they feel are influencing the youth.
The 9 a.m. broadcast will take place during Leak’s weekly broadcast aired at the Leak & Son’s Funeral Home, 7838 S. Cottage Grove Ave.
Leak is sponsoring a bus to take Black leaders and others to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie, Illinois. Jakes said the trip will “help educate Blacks about the Holocaust.”
All three men referred to West’s racist friends like Infowars talk show host Alex Jones, a far-right conspiracy theorist, and white supremacist Nick Fuentes.
Funnye called West “a real mess” and said he is a “totally confused individual who is followed by a lot of people” on the social media network.
“Many of the things that he says, although it doesn’t make any sense, people are taking heed to this because he is saying it. I just got back from Italy, and West was in the papers there.”
Referring to the historical similarities and Civil Rights kinship between Blacks and Jews, Funnye told the Chicago Crusader, “I know that the institution of the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade was in vogue many years ago and the Emancipation of the Proclamation of 1863 people says that ended a long time ago, but it has not ended.
“There is still mass discrimination in a lot of sectors that affect people of color,” Funnye said.
“We have been told that there were six million people who perished in the Holocaust, but that wasn’t just all of the people who perished. There are people of African descent who perished in the Holocaust. The Germans killed so many people. There were over 20 million Russians who perished no matter what ethnicity or religion they were.
“I do agree that there has been suffering on both sides of the equation,” Funnye said. “The Holocaust lasted six years, but the discrimination that the Jews felt after the Holocaust, where they can or can’t live, or join country clubs, they eventually got through all of that.”