Wednesday, October 2, 2013

CIJA's Shimon Fogel Takes a Backhanded Swipe at the JDL, Pamela Geller and Other "Mouthy" Pro-Israel Activists

I could be wrong, but I think that's who the CIJA chief is talking about here (in a CJN editorial called "We can't have it both ways"):
This isn’t about “turning the other cheek” when Israel’s legitimacy is challenged, even when that challenge contains misleading or deceitful vitriol. Rather, it’s about understanding who the real targets of our advocacy efforts are and the effective strategies needed to secure their support. It isn’t about feeling good or preaching to the converted. It’s about exercising influence where it counts and when it counts.  
While no one can doubt the sincerity or good intentions of those willing to man the ramparts at anti-Israel rallies, or those who try to out-shout or out-spend those bent on delegitimizing the Jewish state, there’s every reason to question the efficacy of that approach. All of our experience suggests that, at best, such efforts only achieve an ephemeral sense of emotional satisfaction. Simply put, these tactics don’t work. They don’t change opinions, nor discredit our adversaries. True advocacy is about extending influence and winning support among those not already committed. Effective advocacy is about successful outreach to new sources of support, not providing emotional reassurance to those already persuaded of the righteousness of our cause.
Here's how I know that, in fact, it's Fogel's foggy approach (which amounts to little more than an updated "sha shtill") that's ineffective: Some "rude," "mouthy" people, some of whom were Jews, spoke up when they saw how Section 13, the notorious diktat in Canada's federal "human rights" legislation, was killing free speech in the country. Because of their "tactics" (which included preaching to the choir, something Fogel condemns), that sleazy Section is no more.

And you know what? They--we--derived immense emotional satisfaction from the exercise.

Had they--we--followed Fogel's advice, the diktat would likely still be on the books.

So phooey on your soggy, foggy claptrap, Shimon.

Update: This is so true (h/t KS):
If you've got an idea or you're working in marketing, the temptation is to seek out and evangelize those that 'don't get it,' to find and sell to the skeptics. 
In fact, real change comes from finding and embracing and connecting and amplifying those that are inclined to like you and believe in you. 
Ideas spread from person to person, not so much from you to them. So find your biggest fans and give them a story to tell.
Unlike CIJA's extra-polite Fogel, I have long been an advocate of "preaching to the choir" because they're the ones who are motivated to actually get off their duffs and do something. 

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