Anti-Semitism Worldwide: It’s Getting Worse

 

The cancer of anti-Semitism hasn’t been cured; it’s only gone into remission. These days it’s making a notable re-entry worldwide. By looking at France, the United Kingdom, and Germany, we can get a pretty good idea of the reasons for the increase; we can also take a look at the problem in the United States. And we can’t fool ourselves into thinking that there’s going to be a quick or easy cure.

There are 500,000 Jews living in France:

In 2012 an Islamic fundamentalist in Toulouse shot dead three children and a teacher at a Jewish school. In January 2015, four people were killed at a Jewish supermarket by an associate of the two brothers who had killed staff at Charlie Hebdo. Most recently a 85 year-old Jewish woman [Holocaust survivor] was stabbed to death and set on fire. Reports of anti-Semitic violence in France rose by 26 percent last year, which has led record numbers of Jews to immigrate to Israel.

Of particular note, a 65-year old Orthodox Jewish woman was thrown to her death out of her apartment window in April 2017; it was ruled only last month that the motive was anti-Semitic.

The leadership in France is reluctantly acknowledging that they have a Muslim anti-Semitic problem. More than that, both the Left and Right political party members are resorting to anti-Semitic slurs. It’s unclear precisely what steps to take to deal with this increasingly abhorrent occurrence:

The failure of addressing anti-Semitism in France is political, whether lack of political courage or of extreme political correctness. If leaders in Paris are unable to address the deep-rooted anti-Semitic beliefs in France, then acts like murder of this Holocaust survivor are bound to repeat.

Germany has an even worse situation:

The police registered 1,453 anti-Semitic incidents in Germany last year, more than in five of the previous seven years, and organizations including the American Jewish Congress say fewer than a third of such incidents get reported.

No matter who the primary perpetrators are, Levi Salomon, head of the Jewish Forum for Democracy against Anti-Semitism states that most violent incidents are caused by Muslims. He also points out that he doesn’t want to stigmatize a community, but to say the problem doesn’t lie with migrants makes the situation worse.

In addition:

Others paint a more nuanced picture, saying prejudice and stereotypes harbored by recent migrants from largely Muslim countries have added to an existing undercurrent of anti-Semitism among some Germans and older migrant communities from Eastern Europe, resulting in an increasingly threatening environment.

Some people in Germany have tried to rely on the education system to change students’ perceptions. Unfortunately, many of the Muslim students have been conditioned to anti-Semitism in their countries of origin, and are educated otherwise with difficulty, due to their ignorance of the language of their new country, and attitudes remain unchanged.

Finally, in Great Britain, an extensive study of 5,466 “observations” on anti-Semitism determined that although 30% of British society holds one anti-Semitic attitude, that doesn’t mean that 30% of the population is anti-Semitic. In fact, those same people agreed with one or more positive statements about Jews:

With this in mind, it is worth stressing a fact that runs the risk of being understated in a problem-centred report: levels of antisemitism in Great Britain are among the lowest in the world. British Jews constitute a religious and ethnic group that is seen overwhelmingly positively by an absolute majority of the British population: about 70% of the population of Great Britain have a favourable opinion of Jews and do not entertain any antisemitic ideas or views at all.

For those wondering about how the results from Muslims were evaluated, keep in mind that levels of anti-Semitism in Great Britain are the lowest in the world:

The prevalence of negativity towards Jews and Israel is, on average, twice as high among Muslims than the general population.

Regarding the US, I am somewhat reluctant to quote two recent studies; it’s unclear whether either or both of these organizations provide objective analyses, since both tend to be politically oriented. Here’s one organization from January 2018:

An internet survey conducted by the World Zionist Organization (WZO) on anti-Semitism in the US shows that 70% of respondents experienced an anti-Semitic incident over the past year.

WZO Vice Chairman Yaakov Hagoel said the recent upswing in anti-Semitism in the US is a result of US President Donald Trump’s support of Israel, and not from the people’s hate of the Jews around him. According to him, Trump’s policies are an important factor in the rise in anti-Semitism not just in the US but around the world.

Based on the comment about Trump, I think it would be reasonable to question the credibility of this organization’s comments.

The L.A. Times reported these study results:

Harassment, threats and vandalism cases targeting Jews in the United States surged to near-record levels in 2017, jumping 57% over the previous year, according to a new report by a prominent civil rights organization.

The Anti-Defamation League counted 1,986 anti-Semitic incidents — the second-highest number since the group began tracking them nearly four decades ago.

The figure represents the largest annual jump the organization has ever recorded. Physical attacks, which accounted for less than 1% of the incidents, was the only category that fell.

The overall count, based on data from law enforcement, victims and local Jewish organizations, includes an increase in bomb threats against Jewish centers, vandalism at synagogues and Jewish cemeteries and threats at schools.

The Anti-Defamation League has also been under severe criticism regarding its objectivity for documenting anti-Semitism. It’s therefore difficult to know how accurate the data are.

This raises a number of serious concerns regarding the increases in anti-Semitic acts, how they are being addressed, and the degree to which we should be concerned:

  • As shown in France, there seems to be a reluctance to identify actions as anti-Semitic. Those countries that are trying to bring in migrants are hesitant to criticize Muslim populations. This ambivalence could be costly.
  • A lack of political will or a commitment to political correctness may cause leaders to be indecisive, possibly putting their populations at great risk.
  • In Germany, efforts to change minds about anti-Semitism after World War II seem to have had limited success; trying to influence young people today through the education system doesn’t seem to be working.
  • Blaming unpopular politicians, such as Jeremy Corbyn in the UK, Angela Merkel in Germany, or Donald Trump in the US for a rise in anti-Semitism only distorts the true issues.
  • Efforts to inflate the anti-Semitism numbers might be occurring due to a desire to engender support for the Jewish populations that are victimized.
  • Even stopping Muslim immigration may not help; too many potentially anti-Semitic Muslims are now residents all over the world.

If actions are not taken in the near future, the impact to Jews worldwide could ultimately be disastrous.

What do you think?

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  1. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Hypatia (View Comment):

    I’m reading a book about Odessa, a city founded 2 years after Washington DC. When it was getting up and running, Odessa, a Black Sea port, had kind of a frontier atmosphere. Anti-semitism was an old story in Russia, of course, but here, while the new city needed the Jews’ economic and financial abilities, their innovative intelligence, their cultural and intellectual talent, they had it good.

    For a while. It seemed “city air makes free”. Indeed the history of the establishment of many European cities is similar.

    But, well, by the early 20th century when the city was established it was, “they’re in control of everything,” and in the twentieth century Odessa was the scene of some of the most devastating pogroms and mass murders of Jews.

    i had an awful thought, for the very first time. Our country is relatively young. Jews have been safe here, have prospered unmolested, have made the contributions I mentioned above. They’ve had it good.

    But what if even our country is destined to repeat, just on a longer historical arc, the terrible trajectory of cities like Odessa? It just takes more time because it’s on a national rather than urban scale?

    Im reading this book because we will be going to Ukraine next month. We have always traveled a lot. And we love it, but….the more we visit the Old World, the more insistent the terrible history of persecution of the Jews becomes. It now looms larger than any other aspect of history. And I don’t think this is an illusion. I think our earlier relative obliviousness to it was an illusion. It is there, it was always there.

    I cry thinking of the burden you bear.

    Muslim immigration is a scourge, for this and many other reasons. But Christianity had a 630 year head start. The Lord preserve His people.

    Another good read in which Odessa plays a prominent role is Hillel Halkin’s short biography of Vladimir Jabotinsky, who was one of Odessa’s sons.

    Jabotinsky, the primary leader of Revisionist Zionism, was a very consequential man. Menachem Begin – who broke the back of Labor’s domination of Israel politics – was his most prominent disciple; Benjamin Netanyahu’s father was Jabotinsky’s secretary.

    • #31
  2. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

     

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Al Sisi has done so, at risk of his life, which makes the lack of establishment Muslim advocacy voices calling out the cancer within all the more inexcusable.

    Roger Simon:

    Al-Sisi is certainly correct.  The whole world has been waiting for a long time for the next move of these imams or for somebody, anybody that will modernize Islam as other religions have done.

    My understanding is Islamic text isn’t as amendable to this as the others are, but this isn’t my bag at all.

    • #32
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    RufusRJones (View Comment):

     

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Al Sisi has done so, at risk of his life, which makes the lack of establishment Muslim advocacy voices calling out the cancer within all the more inexcusable.

    Roger Simon:

    Al-Sisi is certainly correct. The whole world has been waiting for a long time for the next move of these imams or for somebody, anybody that will modernize Islam as other religions have done.

    My understanding is Islamic text isn’t as amendable to this as the others are, but this isn’t my bag at all.

    Islam had a history of debating its theology, but debate was stopped long ago. 

    • #33
  4. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    Russia has also been in the news recently regarding anti-Semitic remarks:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2018/03/11/putin-condemned-for-saying-jews-may-have-manipulated-u-s-election/?utm_term=.6c12d01ab0ca

    I wonder sometimes who is really behind the scenes fueling such hatred –  We’ve not learned the lesson that radical Islam is not compatible with Western life – history has shown Islam’s many attempts to overthrow Christian and Jewish life.  Those that want a world without borders, terror and who want true peace won’t denounce those things.  We haven’t learned from history so we’re doomed to repeat – and that goes for the communists and totalitarianism that we see re-emerging.  God bless those that have suffered, even Muslims by the hands of Muslims – Faith and prayer!  

    • #34
  5. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    Hypatia (View Comment):

    I’m reading a book about Odessa, a city founded 2 years after Washington DC. When it was getting up and running, Odessa, a Black Sea port, had kind of a frontier atmosphere. Anti-semitism was an old story in Russia, of course, but here, while the new city needed the Jews’ economic and financial abilities, their innovative intelligence, their cultural and intellectual talent, they had it good.

    For a while. It seemed “city air makes free”. Indeed the history of the establishment of many European cities is similar.

    But, well, by the early 20th century when the city was established it was, “they’re in control of everything,” and in the twentieth century Odessa was the scene of some of the most devastating pogroms and mass murders of Jews.

    i had an awful thought, for the very first time. Our country is relatively young. Jews have been safe here, have prospered unmolested, have made the contributions I mentioned above. They’ve had it good.

    But what if even our country is destined to repeat, just on a longer historical arc, the terrible trajectory of cities like Odessa? It just takes more time because it’s on a national rather than urban scale?

    Im reading this book because we will be going to Ukraine next month. We have always traveled a lot. And we love it, but….the more we visit the Old World, the more insistent the terrible history of persecution of the Jews becomes. It now looms larger than any other aspect of history. And I don’t think this is an illusion. I think our earlier relative obliviousness to it was an illusion. It is there, it was always there.

    I cry thinking of the burden you bear.

    Muslim immigration is a scourge, for this and many other reasons. But Christianity had a 630 year head start. The Lord preserve His people.

    Could you post about your trip? I’m half Ukrainian and would love to hear about it.

    • #35
  6. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):
    In Christianity, supersessionism is a theological view on the current status of the church in relation to the Jewish people and Judaism. It holds that the Christian Church has succeeded the Israelites as the definitive people of God or that the New Covenant has replaced or superseded the Mosaic covenant. From a supersessionist’s “point of view, just by continuing to exist [outside the Church], the Jews dissent”. This view directly contrasts with dual-covenant theology which holds that the Mosaic covenant remains valid for Jews.

    Good grief. I’m sorry I asked! I do believe most of the Christians I’ve talked with here on Ricochet believe that their religion was the “next step” after Judaism, rather than replacing it, since most of them also accept the Chumash. At least that’s my understanding. I’ve never even heard of supersessionism.

    Me neither – I don’t think its a majority view within the Christian world anymore than the Muslim faith replacing both Christianity or Judaism. If that were true, the Old Testament would not be a part of the Bible – in fact, both Christians and Jews are being persecuted throughout the world more than ever.

    • #36
  7. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    Russia has also been in the news recently regarding anti-Semitic remarks:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2018/03/11/putin-condemned-for-saying-jews-may-have-manipulated-u-s-election/?utm_term=.6c12d01ab0ca

    I wonder sometimes who is really behind the scenes fueling such hatred – We’ve not learned the lesson that radical Islam is not compatible with Western life – history has shown Islam’s many attempts to overthrow Christian and Jewish life. Those that want a world without borders, terror and who want true peace won’t denounce those things. We haven’t learned from history so we’re doomed to repeat – and that goes for the communists and totalitarianism that we see re-emerging. God bless those that have suffered, even Muslims by the hands of Muslims – Faith and prayer!

    Thank you for the link, @frontseatcat. I didn’t see that article. Discouraging, but not surprising. I don’t know if we will ever learn that lesson re the Jews: we’ve been the world’s scapegoat for centuries.

    • #37
  8. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):
    In Christianity, supersessionism is a theological view on the current status of the church in relation to the Jewish people and Judaism. It holds that the Christian Church has succeeded the Israelites as the definitive people of God or that the New Covenant has replaced or superseded the Mosaic covenant. From a supersessionist’s “point of view, just by continuing to exist [outside the Church], the Jews dissent”. This view directly contrasts with dual-covenant theology which holds that the Mosaic covenant remains valid for Jews.

    Good grief. I’m sorry I asked! I do believe most of the Christians I’ve talked with here on Ricochet believe that their religion was the “next step” after Judaism, rather than replacing it, since most of them also accept the Chumash. At least that’s my understanding. I’ve never even heard of supersessionism.

    The Catholic Church probably disagrees, but as I understand it from reading Nostra Aetate, it holds that because of the nature of the Trinity, the Jewish people’s connection to Hashem either always or at least since the original Easter (I don’t understand the theology well enough to make the distinction, but either way IIUC the Church considers it to be a mystery beyond human comprehension) has been through Jesus. Using a crude analogy, the electric utility has been reorganized and the headquarters has moved. As a courtesy to old customers, Jews can continue to send our payments (prayers) to the old address, and can rely on their being forwarded.

    I think that this, plus the decision not to actively evangelize Jews, is probably the most that Jews can reasonably expect from the Church.

    I’ve mentioned Bibi’s father, Benzion Netanyahu z”l. He was an eminent historian, whose revisionist history of the Spanish Inquisition is a very worthwhile read.

    To quote from one of Amazon’s editorial reviews:

    He argues with enormous evidence that Spanish Jews, though forced to convert, had become “devoutly Christian” and thoroughly assimilated into Spanish society. What was new in the 15th century was the Spanish monarchy’s practice of defining Jews not religiously but racially, which served as a prototype of 20th-century persecutions. Netanyahu’s magisterial achievement is prodigiously researched and lucidly written; it should be in every research, academic, and public library. (Bennett D. Hill, Georgetown Univ., Washington, D.C.)

    And from another:

    The rapid rise of the conversos to high royal offices (higher, even, than those attained by their Jewish forefathers) made them the target of the same forces that had persecuted the Jews. It was to remove the conversos from their influential positions, and to prevent their intermarriage with the Spanish people, that they were accused of being secret Judaizers and members of a “corrupt” race that would “pollute” the Spanish blood. This was the first time that extreme anti-Semitism was wedded to a theory of race — a union that would dramatically affect the course of modern history.

    • #38
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Using a crude analogy, the electric utility has been reorganized and the headquarters has moved. As a courtesy to old customers, Jews can continue to send our payments (prayers) to the old address, and can rely on their being forwarded.

    I think that this, plus the decision not to actively evangelize Jews, is probably the most that Jews can reasonably expect from the Church.

    ————–

    You point to a tension that has existed between the Church and Jews for a very long time. There is a condescension that I think is implied from your description, and I don’t know how true it is. I certainly have Christian friends who are worried that I may not go to heaven if I don’t accept Jesus as my savior, and they don’t understand that view, but I take it that you think we are regarded as second-class citizens religiously. Of course, a PC approach would not acknowledge this thinking, and it may not be true. I wonder how my Rico friends would react. Awkward.

     

    • #39
  10. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Using a crude analogy, the electric utility has been reorganized and the headquarters has moved. As a courtesy to old customers, Jews can continue to send our payments (prayers) to the old address, and can rely on their being forwarded.

    I think that this, plus the decision not to actively evangelize Jews, is probably the most that Jews can reasonably expect from the Church.

    ————–

    You point to a tension that has existed between the Church and Jews for a very long time. There is a condescension that I think is implied from your description, and I don’t know how true it is. I certainly have Christian friends who are worried that I may not go to heaven if I don’t accept Jesus as my savior, and they don’t understand that view, but I take it that you think we are regarded as second-class citizens religiously. Of course, a PC approach would not acknowledge this thinking, and it may not be true. I wonder how my Rico friends would react. Awkward.

    I’m a practical man. The Church is telling its followers to behave decently–and that antisemitism, however long its history among Catholics, however much it may or may not have been doctrinally or ecclesiastically tolerated in the past, well, that was then, this is now. Second class citizens? I don’t care—for now. For now, I don’t haveto. If the Church thinks I’m theologically in error, resting on my tradition I return the favor.

    If the Church, or at any rate its bishops including the guy in Rome, decide to follow the one it calls the Father of Lies (again) at some time in the future, as somebody once said, sufficient unto the day. These days, Jews not only have money, we have have lawyers and guns. And a country.

     

    • #40
  11. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Using a crude analogy, the electric utility has been reorganized and the headquarters has moved. As a courtesy to old customers, Jews can continue to send our payments (prayers) to the old address, and can rely on their being forwarded.

    I think that this, plus the decision not to actively evangelize Jews, is probably the most that Jews can reasonably expect from the Church.

    ————–

    You point to a tension that has existed between the Church and Jews for a very long time. There is a condescension that I think is implied from your description, and I don’t know how true it is. I certainly have Christian friends who are worried that I may not go to heaven if I don’t accept Jesus as my savior, and they don’t understand that view, but I take it that you think we are regarded as second-class citizens religiously. Of course, a PC approach would not acknowledge this thinking, and it may not be true. I wonder how my Rico friends would react. Awkward.

    I’m a practical man. The Church is telling its followers to behave decently–and that antisemitism, however long its history among Catholics, however much it may or may not have been doctrinally or ecclesiastically tolerated in the past, well, that was then, this is now. Second class citizens? I don’t care—for now. For now, I don’t haveto. If the Church thinks I’m theologically in error, resting on my tradition I return the favor.

    If the Church, or at any rate its bishops including the guy in Rome, decide to follow the one it calls the Father of Lies (again) at some time in the future, as somebody once said, sufficient unto the day. These days, Jews not only have money, we have have lawyers and guns. And a country.

     

    I always appreciate your candor and directness . Thanks. 

    • #41
  12. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    I’m a practical man. The Church is telling its followers to behave decently–and that antisemitism, however long its history among Catholics, however much it may or may not have been doctrinally or ecclesiastically tolerated in the past, well, that was then, this is now. Second class citizens? I don’t care—for now. For now, I don’t haveto. If the Church thinks I’m theologically in error, resting on my tradition I return the favor.

    I believe serious adherents to any faith must concur in the last sentence. We will live together well to the extent that we avoid turning theological disputes, which must arise if we believe differently, into casus belli

     

     

    • #42
  13. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    We will live together well to the extent that we avoid turning theological disputes, which must arise if we believe differently, into casus belli

    Absolutely. That has historically come into conflict in Christianity and Islam with the call to convert non-believers. It still does to a greater or lesser extent in some Christian denominations and in normative Islam.

    In any theocracy or state with an established religion, non-adherents to the religion of the rulers tend to be penalized; this is directly or indirectly to promote conversion. In some cases, non-adherents’ conduct is less restricted; lending at interest is an historical example.

    Jews got burned by the Idumeans and no longer push conversion. Yes, we have a long memory:

    A decisive change in the relations between  [Edom/Idumea and the Jews] took place in the days of John Hyrcanus (end of second century B.C.E.). Hyrcanus conquered the whole of Idumea and undertook the forced conversion of its inhabitants to Judaism (Jos., Ant., 13:257ff.). Thenceforth the Idumeans became a section of the Jewish people, Idumea becoming one of the ordinary administrative districts of the Hasmonean state. It appears that the Hasmonean dynasty used some of the respected families of Idumea to establish its dominion in that country. During the reigns of Alexander Yannai and his wife Alexandra Salome [no, Queen Shlomtzion Alexandra wasn’t that Salome.]  Antipas, who was an Idumean, served as ruler of Idumea on behalf of the Hasmoneans (Ant., 14:10). Herod, appointed king of Judea by the Romans in 40 B.C.E., was his grandson.

    • #43
  14. Annefy Member
    Annefy
    @Annefy

    Know this Jews of America: I stand with you. And I stand with a gun. (Might I suggest you buy one??)

    I had an argument with a friend recently where I expressed confusion over the mini-series “The Handmaiden’s Tale”.

    From what nightmare of a women’s study thesis did this book spring from? I will forgive the author for her naivete (the book was written in the 80’s); but it is unforgivable to ascribe to Christians the very crimes that we know believers in Islam are guilty of (up to and including cliterodectomy) when we know better.

    The husband of a Jewish friend told me in no uncertain terms that The Handmaiden’s Tale was a cautionary tale and a reminder to all that if Christians are given too much power, that is the future.

    So he worries about making sure Pence doesn’t come to power. And then he said, and I quote, “Don’t kid yourself. You’re a Catholic and you’ll grab your pitchfork when told.” And I replied, “No. I’ll grab my gun. And you’d better come over to my house since you don’t have one.”

    Know your enemy. It ain’t Pence. And it ain’t me.

    • #44
  15. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Yes, we have a long memory:

    A decisive change in the relations between [Edom/Idumea and the Jews] took place in the days of John Hyrcanus (end of second century B.C.E.). Hyrcanus conquered the whole of Idumea and undertook the forced conversion of its inhabitants to Judaism (Jos., Ant., 13:257ff.). Thenceforth the Idumeans became a section of the Jewish people, Idumea becoming one of the ordinary administrative districts of the Hasmonean state. It appears that the Hasmonean dynasty used some of the respected families of Idumea to establish its dominion in that country. During the reigns of Alexander Yannai and his wife Alexandra Salome [no, Queen Shlomtzion Alexandra wasn’t that Salome.] Antipas, who was an Idumean, served as ruler of Idumea on behalf of the Hasmoneans (Ant., 14:10). Herod, appointed king of Judea by the Romans in 40 B.C.E., was his grandson.

    There is so much richness here, and it explains a lot–about how some of the actions of the Jews were accepted (charging interest) and then used as a whip to punish them; forced conversion (which I understand was rare), and the interesting association with Esau. And then we come to Herod  . . .

    • #45
  16. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Annefy (View Comment):
    So he worries about making sure Pence doesn’t come to power. And then he said, and I quote, “Don’t kid yourself. You’re a Catholic and you’ll grab your pitchfork when told.” And I replied, “No. I’ll grab my gun. And you’d better come over to my house since you don’t have one.”

    Good grief, @annefy; so many Jews are misguided about Christians! Your allegiance to Jewry is touching. And the last thing I worry about is government by Christians. I’ve never met a single person who wanted a Christian State! Thanks for the offer of the gun, but I’m good.  ;-)

    • #46
  17. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Annefy (View Comment):

    Know this Jews of America: I stand with you. And I stand with a gun. (Might I suggest you buy one??)

    I had an argument with a friend recently where I expressed confusion over the mini-series “The Handmaiden’s Tale”.

    From what nightmare of a women’s study thesis did this book spring from? I will forgive the author for her naivete (the book was written in the 80’s); but it is unforgivable to ascribe to Christians the very crimes that we know believers in Islam are guilty of (up to and including cliterodectomy) when we know better.

    My husband of a Jewish friend told me in no uncertain terms that The Handmaiden’s Tale was a cautionary tale and a reminder to all that if Christians are given too much power, that is the future.

    So he worries about making sure Pence doesn’t come to power. And then he said, and I quote, “Don’t kid yourself. You’re a Catholic and you’ll grab your pitchfork when told.” And I replied, “No. I’ll grab my gun. And you’d better come over to my house since you don’t have one.”

    Know your enemy. It ain’t Pence. And it ain’t me.

    As Meir Kahane, (may Hashem avenge his blood) used to say: “Every Jew a .22.” Not a bad start, and it rhymes.

    But as an old, somewhat stove up guy, I say: “the largest caliber you can train with on a bad day.”

    • #47
  18. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    We will live together well to the extent that we avoid turning theological disputes, which must arise if we believe differently, into casus belli.

    Absolutely. That has historically come into conflict in Christianity and Islam with the call to convert non-believers. It still does to a greater or lesser extent in some Christian denominations and in normative Islam.

    In any theocracy or state with an established religion, non-adherents to the religion of the rulers tend to be penalized; this is directly or indirectly to promote conversion. In some cases, non-adherents’ conduct is less restricted; lending at interest is an historical example.

    Hence Article VI (no religious test for any office) and the First Amendment (no establishment or restriction on free exercise). That allows  mutually inconsistent faiths, with or without commandments to spread their faith, to live safely and relatively peacefully together. The last thing Christians believe Christ to have spoken on this Earth (after Easter, before the Ascension) was the Great Commission, a radical widening of his earlier orders to seek converts among their own people. 

    • #48
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Another good read in which Odessa plays a prominent role is Hillel Halkin’s short biography of Vladimir Jabotinsky, who was one of Odessa’s sons.

    Jabotinsky, the primary leader of Revisionist Zionism, was a very consequential man. Menachem Begin – who broke the back of Labor’s domination of Israel politics – was his most prominent disciple; Benjamin Netanyahu’s father was Jabotinsky’s secretary.

    Added it to my reading queue. Thx.

    • #49
  20. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    That allows mutually inconsistent faiths, with or without commandments to spread their faith, to live safely and relatively peacefully together.

    I’ve often thought that we today don’t appreciate the intensity of religious belief in Colonial times. As I understand it, a committed Baptist and an equally committed Congregationalist had deep concerns about how warm the other fellow’s eternal home was going to be, but they still had to figure out how to work together to put gravel in the muddy part of the public road.

    A lot of the Framers and the delegates to the conventions had political experience down to that level.

    • #50
  21. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Another good read in which Odessa plays a prominent role is Hillel Halkin’s short biography of Vladimir Jabotinsky, who was one of Odessa’s sons.

    Jabotinsky, the primary leader of Revisionist Zionism, was a very consequential man. Menachem Begin – who broke the back of Labor’s domination of Israel politics – was his most prominent disciple; Benjamin Netanyahu’s father was Jabotinsky’s secretary.

    Added it to my reading queue. Thx.

    My pleasure. He’s a very talented writer and translator. He translated Adjusting Sights, a wonderful modern Hebrew novel, so well that I was convinced in reading it that large parts of the text were not just riffs on Biblical texts which I sorta kinda know, and Talmudic texts which I know less well, but on liturgical poetry. Some of it was not from my tradition… but it had that flavor: Basically the consciousness of a young man whose mind and heart were filled with those texts, and who lost touch with his best friend during the hottest fighting of the Yom Kippur War.

    So I bought it in Hebrew and struggled through it. The author is himself a poet; his prose itself is lyrical. Halkin conveyed that in his translation.

    • #51
  22. Annefy Member
    Annefy
    @Annefy

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    Annefy (View Comment):

    Know this Jews of America: I stand with you. And I stand with a gun. (Might I suggest you buy one??)

    I had an argument with a friend recently where I expressed confusion over the mini-series “The Handmaiden’s Tale”.

    From what nightmare of a women’s study thesis did this book spring from? I will forgive the author for her naivete (the book was written in the 80’s); but it is unforgivable to ascribe to Christians the very crimes that we know believers in Islam are guilty of (up to and including cliterodectomy) when we know better.

    My husband of a Jewish friend told me in no uncertain terms that The Handmaiden’s Tale was a cautionary tale and a reminder to all that if Christians are given too much power, that is the future.

    So he worries about making sure Pence doesn’t come to power. And then he said, and I quote, “Don’t kid yourself. You’re a Catholic and you’ll grab your pitchfork when told.” And I replied, “No. I’ll grab my gun. And you’d better come over to my house since you don’t have one.”

    Know your enemy. It ain’t Pence. And it ain’t me.

    As Meir Kahane, (may Hashem avenge his blood) used to say: “Every Jew a .22.” Not a bad start, and it rhymes.

    But as an old, somewhat stove up guy, I say: “the largest caliber you can train with on a bad day.”

    I’ll remember that. I’d embroider it if I knew how.

    What great country is this we live in?

    • #52
  23. Kevin Schulte Member
    Kevin Schulte
    @KevinSchulte

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    You point to a tension that has existed between the Church and Jews for a very long time. There is a condescension that I think is implied from your description, and I don’t know how true it is.

    No condescension from this Christian. Supersessionism ? First this believer of 30 years has heard of it and it is a foreign concept to me. I also do not believe God is finished with the Jews or the Jewish state. 

    I certainly have Christian friends who are worried that I may not go to heaven if I don’t accept Jesus as my savior,

    Yes, Susan. This is what I believe . I believe this because it is the theme of the New Testament. Half of God’s word, the other half points to Him. I also believe the same of anyone who rejects/neglects Jesus Christ. Jewishness is beside the point. 

    and they don’t understand that view, but I take it that you think we are regarded as second-class citizens religiously.

    Nope. I view non messianic Jew’s as missing the Messiah, however my faith stems from theirs. I don’t see them a 2nd class religiously. For crying out loud, Jesus was a Jew as well as the disciples. 

    I feel a kinship with the Jewish people. I have been grafted on. See Romans 11: 11-31

    When my schedule allows, me and my wife are going to go worship with a messianic church to see how they do things. They worship on Saturdays. Been meaning for weak’s to go.  

    I wonder how my Rico friends would react. Awkward.

    Hopefully not too awkward. 

     

     

    • #53
  24. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz
    @drlorentz

    Susan Quinn: What do you think?

    Mrs. Quinn, I think anti-Semitism is a centuries-old problem that’s not going away anytime soon. Europe (including European Russia) has hated Jews for longer than I care to think about. It no longer surprises me as it once did. There are many and complex reasons for it that are beyond the scope of a comment but they are robust and will persist for a long time. If you live in Europe, get the heck-fire out.

    The other night, my wife and I were out to dinner. A young Trump-hater at the next table was hectoring his much older dinner companions, presumably family members, using the same tortured logic of WZO Vice Chairman Yaakov Hagoel: Jews will be attacked because the president supports Israel. Therefore, the president is an abomination. This young hater was doing his hectoring at the top of his lungs so it was impossible to avoid hearing his every word. His older relatives were cowed, only weakly pushing back.

    It’s time for American Jews to recognize that the US is the last, best hope for a safe home, the recent rise in anti-Semitic incidents notwithstanding. Instead of supporting the anti-Semitic Left, support those who respect Jews. Bibi Netanyahu gets it. What’s up with everybody else?

    • #54
  25. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    drlorentz (View Comment):
    Mrs. Quinn, I think anti-Semitism is a centuries-old problem that’s not going away anytime soon. Europe (including European Russia) has hated Jews for longer than I care to think about. It no longer surprises me as it once did. There are many and complex reasons for it that are beyond the scope of a comment but they are robust and will persist for a long time. If you live in Europe, get the heck-fire out.

    Maybe that explains our universities. A lot of the people in them think we should be more like Europe.

    • #55
  26. Ontheleftcoast Inactive
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    drlorentz (View Comment):
    Europe (including European Russia) has hated Jews for longer than I care to think about.

    Europe embarrassed itself by its overenthusiastic collaboration with an ultimately defeated enemy and then embraced an ideology at bottom hostile to both Judaism and Christianity—including the untrue Communist propaganda holding that National Socialism was a far Right ideology.

    That wasn’t enough, so they also decided to import a lot of more kinetic Jew haters to do the dirty work their fathers, grandfathers, and great grandfathers used to do.

    • #56
  27. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    Celebrate diversity!  

     

    • #57
  28. Kate Braestrup Member
    Kate Braestrup
    @GrannyDude

    Ontheleftcoast (View Comment):

    drlorentz (View Comment):
    Europe (including European Russia) has hated Jews for longer than I care to think about.

    Europe embarrassed itself by its overenthusiastic collaboration with an ultimately defeated enemy and then embraced an ideology at bottom hostile to both Judaism and Christianity—including the untrue Communist propaganda holding that National Socialism was a far Right ideology.

    That wasn’t enough, so they also decided to import a lot of more kinetic Jew haters to do the dirty work their fathers, grandfathers, and great grandfathers used to do.

    That’s how it feels to me too, on my less-optimistic days. Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands, Russia…all were morally and perhaps mortally self- maimed by the events of that strange century. I suppose it was foolish to expect them to heal completely,  quickly or ever.  

    Yesterday, I was fretting to myself as I drove (I drive-n-fret a lot) about immigration. I want to be sure that we have the resources to welcome Jewish (and other) refugees who may need to get the heck-fire out of Europe in the next few decades.   

    As for Muslim moderates speaking out against the manifold sins of their fundamentalist brethren; some have done so, and risked their lives. Ayaan Hirsi Ali being an obvious example. However, human cowardice does not demand a death threat before it expresses itself: we would rather not risk even an unpleasant scene or a hassle, a spate of UnFriending, let alone the attentions of the Twitterati, or the loss of a job. In Germany in the 1930s,  there were plenty of Germans who disliked and disapproved of Hitler, plenty who saw no real threat in their Jewish neighbors, plenty who opposed the looming war. If they spoke up, they wouldn’t really be risking their lives. No, they would merely have been inconvenienced—and inconvenience is, sadly, more than enough for most of us to keep our mouths shut.

    That’s the good thing about Ricochet. We’re practicing speaking up.

     

     

     

     

    • #58
  29. I Walton Member
    I Walton
    @IWalton

    Dealing with it from the top down is impossible  and dangerous.  The same people who push anti semitism will use all anti discrimination initiatives to persecute anyone criticizing or expressing concern about the Muslim community, or whatever group happens to be in favor with the left.  There is no way to avoid prejudice but to play my broken record, decentralization and marketization make it irrelevant except in those instances where the bigot violates a law and harms someone, an action that needs no additional anti discrimination or bigotry laws. 

    • #59
  30. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Kevin Schulte (View Comment):
    No condescension from this Christian. Supersessionism ? First this believer of 30 years has heard of it and it is a foreign concept to me. I also do not believe God is finished with the Jews or the Jewish state. 

    A thoughtful response, @kevinschulte. I also want to be clear that I don’t think Christians see me as second class, but I thought that could be inferred from @ontheleftcoast‘s comments (and he clarified that). I would suggest that G-d isn’t finished with any of us, btw. As far as the “messianic Jews,” I hope you realize that Jews don’t consider them to be Jews. I wish they had chosen to call themselves something else. But it’s a free country.

    • #60
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