Monday, March 27, 2023

I sent this to a local board after the moderator urged the readers to read the article “Racism in the Orthodox Community,” (December 1, 2016) that was published in The Jewish Link and after another reader, Gary, has shared his bad experience regarding his own family. Then, I thought that my answer would reflect what many of the community think.

I have to believe Gary that he and his family indeed have encountered such unpleasant behavior. I share the feeling that this was wrong and I just have to hope and believe that I and my children (who are in same age group as Gary’s) have never participated in that behavior.

That said, let’s go to the article. I originally did not read the article as I almost never read articles written by staunch liberals, Jewish or otherwise. I usually find such articles and the people behind them to be hateful and inconsiderate. Just see how many of them support the racist and terrorist BDS, how quick was one of them to tweet the infamous “rural=stupid” after the election, and how quick was their political leader to cast most of the people who have not supported her as a basket of deplorables.

I do not know Rabbi Jeremy Wieder and I do not have any reason to suspect that he supports the BDS or that he implies that people he does not even know are stupid. However, he’s cast a cloud of shame on the whole Orthodox community without any real evidence, except of repeating the same words with repetitive adjectives: “Unfortunately, racism runs deep in the Orthodox community. I can’t tell you numbers, but I can tell you that it is a very, very real issue.” And then he casts a shadow on the Israelis, as any good liberal, who would make you believe that he is only against Zionism, not against the Jews (God forbid), would do: “Some of this is a product of people who spend time in Eretz Yisrael, where it is easier to understand why people develop racist leanings against Arabs.”

The only real story that he brings is about some students who’d discussed years ago their relation to Arabs with the background of the Arab murderous behavior (the Arabs don’t have too many liberals anyway).

So what really is his grudge, despite his assertion that he does not care who you, the reader, voted for? Trump, according to him, has uttered a lot of racist things (conveniently forgetting how Trump did connect with the African-American and the Hispanic communities, and more conveniently ignoring the basket of deplorables assertion). So after saying that most people voted for Trump despite his perceived racism, he comes with the opposite implication (without any evidence, of course): “But to have voted for him davka because you are sympathetic to the racism? That is despicable. There’s nothing more deplorable than that.” Implying, again without any evidence, that most Orthodox people fall in that category!

It appears that Rabbi Wieder is, like other people in our community, just another Democratic party and staunch liberal operative.

Oh, and by the way, the fact that I’ve supported Trump does not make me a racist, as people who know me, in our community or outside of it and who happen to be of a different race (whatever that means), would attest.

Ze’ev Atlas


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