New York, NY, October 3, 2014 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today called remarks made by Michael Avila, the owner of The Coffee Shop in Bushwick, Brooklyn “disgraceful,” and called upon him to make a true apology for his offensive and anti-Semitic remarks.
In a diatribe posted on Instagram, Mr. Avila, apparently motivated by the perception that Jews “function via greed and dominance,” accused Jews of being “greedy infiltrators” in the Bushwick neighborhood.
“Mr. Avila opened his establishment to serve the diverse community that resides in Bushwick and has deeply offended the Jewish community as well as the entire borough of Brooklyn,” said Evan R. Bernstein, ADL New York Regional Director. “His public attack on his Jewish neighbors is both disgraceful and anti-Semitic.”
In response to the outcry over his original statements, Mr. Avila said, “I’m anti-Zionism. It’s about politics, it’s about greed…I’m certainly not anti-Semitic. That would stand against everything I believe I stand for.”
“Mr. Avila’s attempt to mask and justify his anti-Semitic tirade by claiming his views towards Jews are motivated by politics – rather than religion – is a feeble attempt at contrition,” Mr. Bernstein said. “We call on Mr. Avila to work to understand the evils of anti-Semitism and bigotry and accept full responsibility for his statements. We welcome the opportunity to sit down with him to help him understand the history of anti-Semitism and its impact on the Jewish community.”
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world’s leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry. Follow us on Twitter: @ADL_NY