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My First “Hate” Mail!

Lots of Information here.

It’s not often that you get a handwritten letter nowadays. So when I found one in today’s stack of mail, I was curious to open it. There was no return address.

Hmmm. It was a copy of a single-spaced, 8-point printed manifesto with handwriting all around it . Based on the way the writer formed his Es and Gs, a combination of cursive and print that reminded me of my mother-in-law’s handwriting (though not as neat), I deduced that it must have been written by a European. And probably a older person. One that still valued hand-lettered correspondence and correct grammar with attention to quotation marks, commas and spelling. So some grudging acknowledgement of her writing skills was in order. Trying to squeeze in as much wordage as possible, the writer even helpfully inserted in the two lines of space between the unindented paragraphs, such subheadings as “*WHY WON’T ISRAEL JOIN THE INTL CRIMINAL COURT?” and “*ISRAEL IS A SETTLER STATE– INVALID” and “*ZIONISM IS A RACIST IDEALOGY.”

Well, well. Despite all the exclamation points, and generous use of such anti-Zionist epithets as “Apartheid!” “Ethnic cleansing!” ”Occupied,” and “Illegal!” somehow I wasn’t swayed.

Rather than feeling threatened by my very first personalized letter from an unknown, but apparently very enthusiastic enemy of the Israel state, I felt something else. Not anger, not fear, and certainly not the least itty bit convinced that all this time I’ve been wrong.

No, mostly I felt puzzled. How did this person track me down? How did they get my name and address, all correctly spelled and why did they feel compelled to go to the trouble of sending it to me with a a stamp of the American flag with the word “Freedom” on it. (Seems the irony of supporting terrorists of the United States was lost on this person). But I also felt a bit…recognized. At least I got a response to the outrage I have been expressing in letters to newspapers, media outlets, government officials, and certain universities. At least they took the trouble to respond to me. At least they spelled my name right. And, unlike the protestors at many of our elite universities they at least were aware that Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005 and that Hamas is a “hostile entity.” Of course, no mention was made of the wars and terrorist attacks against the Jewish state perpetrated by the Palestinians and neighboring Arab countries throughout their history.

On the contrary, I kind of felt validated. I am worthy of attention. Never mind that it’s negative.

Of one thing I am sure. I am ready to double down on my efforts to plead the cause of Israel wherever that takes me. Bring it on!!! (Hey, I can use exclamation marks as well as anyone!!!)

About the Author
Gina Friedlander is obsessed with all things Israeli. She served as editor of several trade magazines in the health and supplement industries before switching careers and becoming a high school English teacher and tutor of English and SAT prep. Currently she spends her time visiting Israel, writing, playing tennis, doing Israeli folk dancing, and trying to stay positive.
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