When you really get to know Jews, what’s there not to love about them? In comparison to humans in general, many Jews are even outstanding. Contrary to popular opinion, also among many Jews, this is not genetic. Rather, this is the result of careful pruning of each generation, from parent to child. Look at our Torah Portion of the Week (Sho-feteem). Many laws about capital punishment (The Sages call ‘a bunch of murderers’ a court that rightly hands down a death penalty more frequently than once in 70 years!), murder, manslaughter, and war and the importance of preserving peace and fruit trees.
Not Getting Away with Murder
A good example is how Jews for many generations in all countries are low on being murderers. Jews are human and humans make all kinds of terrible mistakes and Jews are not above that. But murder is more often than among Gentiles not among Jewish mistakes.
One could philosophize why. Endlessly. Until one finds proof. That Jews were murdered so much that we understand how bad that is. That such antipathy got transferred into our DNA. Or that we always were like that and that’s why G^d took us as an example to all of humankind. Not so.
My proof comes from pub-goers. In an attempt to be like all nations (an evil impulse among Jews), some spend their free time drinking alcohol. Once they do, they almost kill as easily as any drunk in Amsterdam.
It’s the Jewish Tradition that ingrains in us not to murder. It is very prominent in our teachings. So much so that it gets often said and assumed of us without much emphasis. That’s how it gets into the sub-conscience. Thou shan’t murder. But it all disappears when the brain is flooded by alcohol. When the wine is in, the wit is out. To respect human life comes from being taught, not from “being” morally superior.
That’s how Jews are also trained to be responsible, giving, humble, averse to seeking conflict or picking fights, etc. Not all of us. But on average more of us than of most other peoples.
Why Like Jews?
Some Gentiles like people and who are no bigots and therefore they like Jews (too). Some Gentiles in the Netherlands who saved Jews from the Nazis did not do so because Jews were so special to them. Either, they saved Jews they knew, who as people were special to them. Or they saw people in distress (because of anti-Semites) and they saved them because that’s what you try when you see a fellow human (or even life form or even anything unique) in danger. Nothing to do with being a friend of the Jews. “Just” being humane.
Then, some Gentiles love Jews as a deep form of respect. They see their holiness. They gratefully appreciate their wisdom of generations. When, as a Jew, you meet such people, you feel such a need to better yourself to be at least a little worthy of such admiration.
But then, same Gentiles love Jews out of believing nice prejudices about us. How warm and caring “all Jews always” are. Like Koreans and Chinese who assume that we’re all brilliant. Not so different from the next club.
And then, some people “love” Jews but in a creepy way. Like those who say “I love fish” and then eat them. That’s love but for the self; affection as “love for what they give me.” That way, some “love” Blacks, Gays, Women, children, Jews (and their music, food, physical closeness, beauty, happiness, etc.). When such “admirers” get irritated even by one of them, their “love” for the whole group can quickly flip to pure violent hatred.
Which Wrong People?
Sometimes Jews are “loved” by really immoral people. Con artists who like our nativity. Dictators who like our attentiveness. Crooks who like our smartness. Elitists who assume that we are rich and chic. Fanatical conservatives who assume that we are conformist.
We must reject their flattery, them using us — though we know that they will end up hating us. But we can only be that frank when the general population, and especially the working class, has embraced the Jews. If we anger the kingpins, our survival better not depends on them.
So, we can’t say to Putin, who loves Jews, to better stop oppressing Gays, journalists, and activists. He would add Jews to his list and the equilibrium in the Middle East would be in real danger.
And as long as the vast majority of nations has trouble supporting Israel, we can’t be too choosy about our allies. Yes, we get blamed for huddling with the reactionaries (by people who’d blame us anyway) but as long as democracies (Europe) are not squarely behind us, we’re taken hostage by some of the despots and shouldn’t blame the victim (ourselves).
But Trump we can tell to go to hell. And we should. It’s more important to cherish our connection with the other oppressed US minorities than to get a fake temporary blessing from a leading con artist who “loves” us for what we can give him — including the prospect of blaming us for everything (through “his” sole immoral and one terrified court Jew).
Meanwhile, real lying anti-Zionist, anti-Jewish Members of Congress get free speech. The US still doesn’t (know how to) stop hate speech. Scary.
Say, you’ve been in marriage counseling forever. Your therapist wrote a comprehensive plan for your relationship and tells you that upon reading it to you, he’ll quit helping you any further. Would you trust such a plan?
For this reason, not only Greenblatt’s resignation makes me suspicious. What’s going on that there is an apparent agreement between the Likud and Blue & White to have us vote unaware of what’s in the Peace Plan.
(Or will he step down to team up with Haley to be an alternative to Trump?)