Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Thoughts on Yom Kippur


On Yom Kippur, to my fellow Jewish Americans: If you're fasting, may it be peaceful and easy. If you're atoning, may you do so with only the minimum required amount of Jewish guilt. And if you feel upset, angry, or frightened by the recent disturbing rise in anti-Semitic rhetoric, stirred up by one very orange tyrant, take this opportunity to reflect upon the fact that we are incredibly fortunate to live in a time and a place where, except in the darkest, most miserable corners of society, anti-Semitism has no impact on our daily lives. Jews enjoy all of the privileges and opportunities that come along with our American citizenship.

Our grandparents were not so lucky. Jews in some other parts of the world are not so lucky.

And, most importantly, right here in America, today in 2016, our Latino and black neighbors (Jewish and Gentile alike), as well as our Muslim brothers and sisters, are not so lucky. They face prejudice, discrimination, and persecution every day, from personal insults to systematic oppression.

I'm not a religious person, but I'd still like to use this day to apologize for falling short of my own ideals, and to vow to be a better advocate for justice and equality in the real world (not just in internet posts). In the coming weeks, I'll start at the voting booth -- but I hope to have the strength and courage to carry my values far beyond there.


Harvey F Leeds said...

Ditto!!! You are a master wordsmith!!! Apples and hummus do not fall from the tree!!!

gail said...

Bravo Richie! You put into words what I believe we all should be thinking.

Anonymous said...

Right to the point and beautiful expressed...thank you...jsb

Lawrence Solan said...

Once again, I agree with every word you write. Many Jewish people in the U.S. can both identify with those who are victims of discrimination and feel fortunate to be privileged in our society.