Yippee! It’s Anti-Israel Apartheid Week; no, it’s Israel Apartheid Week; no it’s Israel Anti-Apartheid Week-whatever it is…it’s 52 weeks a year

Yippee! It’s that time again. That exciting university-condoned Jew-bashing time of year.

Anti-Semitism is in the rise on campus.”Rather than being localized to a few campuses or restricted to politically active or religious students, this problem is widespread. Jewish students are subjected to both traditional prejudice and the new political anti-Semitism.” Top 10 anti-Semitic schools in the USA:

Columbia University, Cornell University, George Mason University, Loyola University Chicago, Portland State University, San Diego State University, San Francisco State University, Temple University,, University of California Los Angeles, Vassar College

Get your umbrellas, protect yourself from the scat that will rain down upon you on university campuses: those bastions of critical thinking. Those places of “higher” learning where parents flush tens of thousands of dollars down the drain so their children will learn that the problems of the world begin and end with….THE JEWS!

Here in Canada “On campuses across the country, student activists are gathering for film screenings, poetry readings, talks and actions to acknowledge Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW). Now in its tenth year (2015 is the eleventh-different year-same drivel) IAW seeks to raise awareness about Israeli apartheid and encourage support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement.  IAW continues to incite controversy in many corners of the country. [It is]a movement that seeks to build solidarity, spread awareness and take concrete action… offer[ing] an exemplary snapshot of where student activism in Canada is today.”

“In Montréal this past fall, Concordia undergraduate students voted to support the global BDS movement, while internationally over 60,000 people signed an open letter calling for a military embargo on Israel. This upcoming spring Israeli Apartheid Week events will take place in March at campuses across the world, illustrating the quickly developing global solidarity movement with the Palestinian struggle for freedom.”

And not wanting facts to get in the way of rhetoric, the deaths of babies in Gaza this winter have been blamed on… Israel!

Don’t worry. If you don’t live in Canada the same opportunities are offered to you on campuses worldwide.

UK: February 23-28 US: Feb 26-March 12 Europe March 2-9 Palestine: March 1-8  Ireland: March 7-14 Canada: March 9-14 South America: March(what the heck-the whole month)

The 11th annual international Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) will be held in South Africa between the 2nd-8th March 2015.The irony of it all. So what if Africa is falling apart-Somalia, Yemen, Libya, Zimbabwe, Sudan, Ethiopia, The Democratic Republic of Congo (I have always suspected countries with the word Democratic in it of not being so democratic), Sierra Leone, Liberia, Nigeria, Niger…What could be more important than trashing Israel, the country that provides assistance with agriculture and irrigation?

So one might ask, Why the Jews? The perennial question. There are no rational answers to irrational emotions. I remember reading a book called “Why the Jews?” My answer, “Why not?” When my patients would say to me, “Why me?” I wanted to say “Well, why not you?” Isn’t that the story of Job?

Well… why not the Jews?

And as we have been chosen, let us rise up to the occasion as we have done over the millennia. We’ve bounced back from the persecutions, prosecutions forced conversions, immolation, the ghettos in Europe and the Muslim countries of the Middle East and North Africa. We survived expulsions and an attempt to wipe us off the face of the earth with the first ever military-industrial complex established to exterminate an entire people. And now we are facing more hatred and vitriol, not only in the Middle East and Europe, but in Canada and the USA.

But we keep coming back. I think of us as the original “mole” in the game Whack-a-mole

You whack us here, we’ll pop up there. No matter what you try, we keep popping up. Here, there and everywhere. So many places, for so few in number. Go for it, give it your best shot, scapegoat us till the end of time, we’ll be there waiting for you!

No need to whine. Personally,  I am sick and tired of justifying and explaining and advocating.

So this year at the annual “Hate the Jews Week”-slightly different from other weeks as this is the official week of Jew hating-let’s respond, especially on campus, with lots of Jewish symbols. Jews and non-Jews coming together, wearing kippot, Stars of David, mezzuzot. Carry Israeli flags-drape them over your shoulders. Walk proudly!!!

Above all, do not avoid the places where the Jew-haters are selling their wares. Gather there. Right in front of them; set up tables, have a coffee, a bagel, cream cheese and lox, some rogelach. A little hummus. It’s chic to be Jewish in the culinary world! Dance the hora. Ramp up some Klezmer.Sing Israeli songs. Talk loudly about all the great Israeli inventions, especially those that have to do with technology and apps. Brag, out loud, while the anti-Semites BDS themselves.

Don’t take the time to explain to these people why you have the right to exist. They aren’t worthy of your attention. They are emotional, hate- filled bullies-plain and simple. They refuse to accept the truth.These hard core anti-semites on campus won’t listen, nor will they change their minds based on what you say. But they will notice your attitude. They will see by your actions that you give them no credence. You will not be drawn into their false narrative.You will not be there figurative or literal punching bag.

My courageous Lions of Judah: Stand Up. Stand Tall. Stand Proud. Remember you are the descendants of King David and Queen Esther. You are the living memorial for all those persecuted and murdered for being Jewish.

Never back away from those who hate us for BEING JEWISH! #IsraelEqualityWeek



About the Author
Diane Weber Bederman is a multi-faith, hospital trained chaplain who lives in Ontario, Canada, just outside Toronto; She has a background in science and the humanities and writes about religion in the public square and mental illness on her blog: The Middle Ground:The Agora of the 21st Century. She is a regular contributor to Convivium: Faith in our Community. "
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