Why do I hear so few reactions to the current anti-Semitic occurrences in the U.S.? I want to shout: “wake up everybody, anti-Semitism is not okay”. When I ask my Jewish friends about it, they acknowledge my concern. My non Jewish friends are surprised to hear how many incidents have occurred this year. Others say, Dorit, it has been always like this, just that now Trump is bringing the hate to the surface. I know I am especially attuned to this issue because my family lost three of its members in concentration camps.
Swastikas have been painted on several campuses across the country. The recent incident where Swastikas were painted in a bathroom stall in the library of Swarthmore college on August 30th, was especially upsetting and then this past week two more were painted on the Swarthmore campus. The administration acted promptly and appropriately. However, no students’ voices were heard, no acknowledgement of the gravity of this or any protest. How come? Am I expecting too much?
At a time when so many students on campuses are protesting Israel’s actions so vehemently, it is important they know more about Israel. Yes, I support criticism of the occupation, I criticize it, but it seems some go as far as questioning the right of Israel to exist. Self-determination and safety are major factors for Israel. Remember, the holocaust did happen and countries throughout the world including the U.S., turned Jews away. My grandmother survived Theresienstadt. However, after the war, she wanted to join her sister in Sweden, but she could not get a visa.
It seems acceptable to be hateful to Jews because Israel is doing some wrong. No other country’s existence is questioned because of wrong doing. Turkey is a recent example. Jewish students on campuses are not responsible for the Israeli government’s actions, yet they get harassed. At a time when anti-Semitism is more apparent and on the rise, why are people not getting how important Israel is and how hate towards people because of their Judaism is not acceptable.
People here in the U.S. are very distraught by some recent terroristic activities in this country. Israelis live with daily dangers. Sirens sound regularly. Shootings go on the northern and eastern borders and rockets are fired from Gaza while terroristic activities happen internally. Where is the compassion for the Israelis who want to live peacefully? Attacking Israel without comprehending its reality is not okay with me.
There are people out here who are writing about current anti-Semitism, I thank you. There are also non-Jews who are making a stand. I admire the recent law school student who left UCLA for NYU because of harassment by students taking part in BDS activities, but this is not enough and I cannot keep quiet anymore. Talk about anti- Semitic incidences whenever you hear about them to whomever will listen.