I am not surprised that what is going on in Israel-Palestine now is bringing out the anti-Semitism that always lurks close to the surface. The situation there is so complex that I honestly don’t know how to address it, other than to express my fervent hope that people on both sides will be safe. May the “path of righteousness” lead them to a peaceful resolution soon.
by Sue Robin, Los Angeles, California
Sullied. The beach path from Will Rodgers down to the Santa Monica pier. Anti-Semitic tropes in bright colors stenciled on the pavement and the benches. My heart breaks and my stomach lurches at the thought. This is a favorite walk. What I love most is the cacophony of languages, the happy children, the gleeful adults on their feet, on their bikes, on their skates, all enjoying the ocean breeze and the California sun, no matter the season and no matter who they are or where they came from.
Los Angeles County has painted over the ugliness, but the splotch of bright blue on the faded blue will be a constant reminder of what was there. I imagine that one of the ritzy houses or the fancy hotels captured the hater on a security camera, though I have heard nary a word since the incident.
When they do catch the perpetrator, I have the ideal punishment. I think the judge should deny this hater the possibility of ever using anything created by Jews again. No penicillin, no polio vaccine, no Barbie dolls, no ball point pens, no tv remotes, no MRIs, no cell phone cameras. The inventions by Jewish people span science, toys, mathematics, engineering, music and the arts, and much more.
Though it is not just the Jews who are the targets (nor the only inventors). These haters seem to have come out of hiding yet again. Asian hate, Black hate, Brown hate, Jew Hate—they are not very discriminating in their discrimination! Physical violence, verbal assaults, vile graffiti abound, heightened from previous years. The only viable weapon is loving kindness and respect. When the white community joined the BLM marchers, it felt like a sea change against discrimination. When the white families stood watch at the harassed Asian family’s home that sent a message. When the Arabs in a small Israeli town helped douse the fire in the synagogue that, too, helps me feel that there is reason to hold onto hope.
Those of us who know the pain of hatred must continue on the path of righteousness, and spread love and kindness in whatever ways we can, for it is the only true path.