The NYPD has arrested Stuart Seldowitz, a former Obama State Department official, for engaging in mean and hurtful behavior towards a Muslim food cart worker. Seldowitz has been charged with several crimes, including “hate crime/stalking” and aggravated harassment. It is worth noting that he was fired by his company, which describes him as a former diplomat for the U.S. State Department and the former Director of the National Security Council under President Obama. So, he’s got quite an impressive resume to go along with his impressive track record of making poor choices.
Former Obama Diplomat Arrested for 'Hate Crime' of Using Mean Words Against Muslim Food Cart Workerhttps://t.co/YmkyAE1aTd
— RedState (@RedState) November 24, 2023
Now, let’s get into the specifics of the incident that landed Seldowitz in hot water. In a video footage, Seldowitz can be heard calling the food cart worker a “terrorist” and making derogatory remarks about the Prophet Muhammad. He even went so far as to threaten the worker and his family with torture by security services when they are supposedly deported back to Egypt. That’s certainly not the kind of behavior one would expect from a distinguished former government official, but I guess it just goes to show that you can take the man out of the Obama administration, but you can’t take the bad behavior out of the man.
Seldowitz’s confrontation with the food cart worker is not an isolated incident. According to reports, he has a history of similar exchanges with Russian diplomats. Clearly, this guy has a knack for rubbing people the wrong way. But here’s the thing: as much of a jerk as Seldowitz may be, he does have the right to express his opinions. We have this little thing called the First Amendment that protects our right to be jerks, if we so choose. Now, that doesn’t excuse his behavior, but it does mean that there are limits to what the law can do in this situation.
The real issue at hand seems to be that Seldowitz insulted Islam, and that’s something society has become increasingly afraid to do. It’s interesting to note that other religious groups, like Catholics, don’t receive the same kind of legal protection. And let’s not forget that Seldowitz also verbally harassed a member of a protected racial/ethnic/religious group. While I don’t condone his actions, I do think it’s important to consider the broader context. There are plenty of instances where Jewish students face verbal abuse on a regular basis in New York’s colleges and universities, and yet the aggressors in those cases go free. It’s a double standard that is deeply concerning.
In the end, Seldowitz’s arrest feels like a step towards fascism. Hate crime laws, especially when it comes to speech, should be deemed unconstitutional. And the way that his actions have been twisted into a stalking charge is just shameful. Look, I’m not a fan of this guy by any means, but this arrest sets a dangerous precedent. Who’s to say that being an “ass” won’t become a crime in New York? It’s a slippery slope, my friends, and let me tell you, I don’t want to live in a world where being an ass can land you in jail.