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Boycott Israel (Not exactly what you’re imagining)

03/31/2015 12:42:53 PM


Rabbi Scott Hausman-Weiss

I love the line from Fiddler on the Roof when Tevye looks up to the sky and says to God, “I know, I know. We are Your chosen people. But once in a while, can’t You choose someone else?” And precisely what’s so ironic about the history of the Jews is that we have found ourselves persecuted for affirming that we are God’s chosen ones and we have found ourselves persecuted for denying it! We are demanded to act in superior ways and we are decried for our inability to do so.

Those of you who have been following my journey through the morass of growing anti-Israel and anti-Semitic events know (at least I hope you do) that my greatest intention with these missives is to help both you and myself process something that if we can’t at least admit is super-complicated, then there’s no point in having the conversation. Insisting that the issues revolving around Israel are black and white and can “simply “ be “adjectivized” within familiar but utterly complicated terms does terrible injustice to the realities that all inhabitants of Israel and the Palestinian territories face.

The truth is so much greyer and grainier than most admit. And it appears quite often that those who insist on a black and white approach tend to fall more on the side of anti-Israel sentiment than pro.

As I prepare for Passover, doing my own process of study that runs the gamut of ancient texts to You Tube video parodies, I came across this video that I think everyone should watch. But! Please do not hear that the suggestion is one of ambivalence on the subject of the Jewish people’s requirement to act as a light to the world. It is however a plea for sanity and an affirmation of the truth – as it stands on its own and as it stands in comparison to the world in which we live. I’ll let rapper and performer Ari Lesser, take it from here: Boycott Israel.

Sat, May 15 2021 4 Sivan 5781