Distasteful anti-Semitic provocation at the Los Angeles Hungarian House

Miklós Pereházy is the president of the Los Angeles based United Hungarian House. His center promotes Hungarian culture, language and tradition.

Mr. Pereházy – an immigrant himself – is doing a good job, and recently he was reelected. He frequently invites performers, musicians, and actors from Hungary. The center organizes various events and occasionally serves tasty dinners for the patrons.

Miklós Pereházy

Miklós Pereházy

On September 27 the Hungarian House will host Ms. Fruzsina Pregitzer an actress from Hungary with a wide repertoire. Among other things Ms. Pregitzer frequently presents the writings of Mr. Albert Wass, who was a fascist, an anti-Semite and a convicted WWII criminal. He committed suicide in the United States after he was investigated by the Justice Department.

Mr. Wass also wrote anti-Semitic pamphlets. One of his fables entitled “The Conquest of the Rats” is a story about rats, who are taking over the house of a pure and noble Hungarian man.

Mr. Wass’s tale was especially popular during WWII under Hungary’s fascist dictatorship. It was republished in 1944 in the city of Cluj just before the city’s Jews were deported to their death to Auschwitz.

Ms. Pregitzer proudly recorded this tale, and it became an instant internet sensation in Hungary. She is popular in the country’s anti-Semitic circles. I might add that Ms. Pregitzer is a talented and intelligent actress, and it is unfortunate that she has lent her talent to racist ideas. (Those who speak Hungarian may listen to her performance by clicking here.)

Fruzsina Pregitzer

The Fruzsina Pregitzer event in Los Angeles

The Hungarian Government permits, sometimes even encourages, unprecedented verbal violence against Jews, Roma and homosexuals. Comparing Jews to rats is a non-event in Hungary; it happens every day in the media. Racist comments are heard and tolerated even in the country’s Parliament.

Ms. Pregitzer invitation to Los Angeles could send the wrong message. It may suggest that the Los Angeles Hungarian House endorses her anti-Semitic performances.

I have asked Mr. Pereházy to consider cancelling her performance. We are waiting for his response.

György Lázár

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