Devorah Titunik
Devorah Titunik

Disgraceful Event in Brooklyn

Imagine a pro-Israel rally in Brooklyn where Jews and their allies are shouting “We don’t want no two-state, we want all of it” and called for violent worldwide demonstrations. I believe there would be tons of news coverage and outrage.

Something like that did happen. But it was a pro-Palestinian rally. They did chant “We don’t want no two-state, we want all of it” as well as “There is only one solution, intifada revolution”.  So where is the news coverage? Where is the outrage?

Once again, what would evoke condemnation were it directed at any other country or group is perfectly fine if it’s against Israel and Jews. As a lifelong progressive, I find it especially painful that not only is the left ignoring this behavior, but they are also championing it. The very people who proudly stand against hate are helping spread the oldest hatred at historic levels.

They have literally had to change the definition of words like genocide and apartheid in order to accuse Israel of these crimes. Because they don’t want to understand the complexities of the world, try to equate the situation with the struggles African Americans have had in the US. Several of the progressive wing of the Democratic party have grandiose speeches about this on the House floor, but none bothered to learn about the actual situation there. None have listened to both sides or bothered to learn the history of the region. They don’t want to hear that there are two sides to this conflict.

Blatant antisemitic tropes and statements made by the elected “Justice Democrats” have gone uncensured by the leadership and while the media, rightly, gave a lot of coverage to Marjorie Taylor Greene’s contemptible statements comparing requiring mask to forcing Jews to wear yellow stars, they have barely covered the constant ugliness coming from the left. In fact, the only one recently covered was when Ilhan Omar put the United States and Israel in the same category as Hamas. I wonder if she hadn’t included the United States in that statement if it would have been covered.

Many Orthodox Jews have been victims of random attacks in Brooklyn. They are targeted because their dress makes them easy to identify as Jewish. I wonder how many non-Orthodox Jews no longer wear clothing or jewelry that could make them targets, how many hide their kippahs under baseball caps.

Like many Jews on the left, I have been feeling politically homeless for a long time. I’m welcome when I agree with them on the many things I agree with them on, but when I dare to stand up to blatant lies about Israel or Jews, I am attacked and ostracized. Jew are only welcome if they are willing to deny our heritage and blame everything on Israel and Jews. Only those who play the “good Jew” are embraced.

Things aren’t better on the right, in fact, the antisemitic language is often identical. The difference is that antisemitism from the right hasn’t become mainstreamed and acceptable.

We Jews must be willing to tell our stories. We should demand that both sides be heard when it comes to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. We should have done this decades ago, but it’s not too late. Silence allows hate to grow, it’s time we made some noise!

About the Author
Devorah Titunik is a graphic artist and poet, and a mother of three grown children. Social justice has always been important to me. For the past several decades I have been concerned with the growing antisemitism I'm seeing from both the right and the left. I hope communication and art can help bring understanding.
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