FACT: We are all going to die. It cannot be prevented. None of us will live to enjoy the 120 years in the life of Moses. But we can and we must enjoy the years which God has given to us. And we should pray that when the angel of death eventually visits us it should be a peaceful and painless visit. A normal death by old age or by illness. But never a death caused by the insanity of one who has no respect for life.
I think back to the insane deaths of two great American presidents, Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy and the tragic death of our past prime minister Yitzchak Rabin, may their memories be blessed.
Their lives were stolen by madmen who had disagreed with their policies and practices and who took it upon themselves to end life. For those madmen who followed the insane pathways the only right way was by the ballot or by the bullet. And sadly they chose the bullet.
As I follow the daily news reports from our Israeli press and television media I have an inner fear that another sick-minded person may choose the insanity of death, aiming to end the lives of our prime minister and his family, God forbid. It must not happen. It must never happen. Sanity must be the choice in the way we live our lives.
Many of us, perhaps even most of us, including myself, have disagreements with Binyamin Netanyahu’s egoistic behavior in which he puts his private concerns far above the concerns of us, the citizens of Israel. But while peaceful protests and disagreements are acceptable, insane acts are not and never can be.
While prime minister Rabin was surrounded by security personnel, nevertheless Yigal Amir’s finger on the trigger of his gun was aimed and struck at Rabin’s head ending his life immediately.
We cannot and we must not permit a re-occurrence of that tragedy. Ill-will is on the winds of the air.
Netanyahu’s Likud supporters have taken it upon themselves to protest in front of the homes of those citizens who defy him. The wife of one was brutally accused of treason and was defiled by improper shouts. The very young child in school was told that her daddy was a traitor and should be murdered.
The child was traumatized by sick-minded adults who lacked both common sense and decency. Neither the wife nor the young daughter of the man who supposedly betrayed the prime minister’s Likud party were responsible and should not have been abused by the Netanyahu gang of inhumane followers.
Likewise, the racists and followers of the fascist Meir Kahane who threaten the lives and security of Arab citizens of the State of Israel, who follow in the footsteps of the sick-minded Kahane who preached death to Arabs and who met an assassin’s bullet as a result of his insane remarks and policies, are a very big danger to the security and to the humanity so desperately needed and wanted by most of us.
Thank God, assassinations of Jews by Jews in Israel have been few. But even the few were too many.
Fortunately, our social justice and our democratic infrastructure enable us to vent our anger and our disagreements in a better and a safer, saner way… by vocal and/or written protests but never by violence.
How many Yigal Amirs live among us? How many have proclaimed a taste for the bullet over the ballot?
They cannot be counted because there are too many of them, too many who hide their inner negative thoughts, too many who wish for death by the insane acts of insane people.
And if, God forbid it 100 times, an assassin’s finger may be on the trigger, I have little doubt that the finger will be that of a Jew, of an Israeli who cannot express disagreement and disappointment in non-violent ways.
Reviewing the past twelve years of the Netanyahu reign, they have not been a reign of terror. On his good side he has accomplished much for us, perhaps more than any previous prime minister. On his bad side he revealed the crimes which brought about his indictment and will ultimately bring about his conviction and possibly a prison sentence.
But the remaining years of his life must be only in God’s Hands and never in the hands of man.
Especially never in the hands of one who seeks to end another’s life by his insanity. Death will come to us all in its due time but it must never be a death by violence or murder.
God gave us life and only He can take life away from us. Death by violent acts is the work of madmen.
We created our nation by rationality and by sanity. Let us continue to live by those values.
The late Chief Rabbi of the British Empire, Lord Jonathan Sacks, expresses the Torah’s warnings.
It speaks to us when a nation loses its moral and spiritual bearings; it is speaking to us in every generation. In his commentary on Behar-Bechukotai, the closing chapter of the Book of Leviticus, he wrote:
“Take note. Once a society begins to fall apart, it is already too late. Avoid the bad. Choose the good. Think long and choose the road that leads to blessings”.
That road is here in Israel. Let us choose to follow it and be worthy of receiving its blessings.