First We Prayed…
I got the news from a local Facebook group.
I don’t remember exactly when I found out, sometime on January 15th.
No context was given, simply that a rabbi was held hostage alongside fellow congregants.
I told my wife what happened, opining that it was likely Islamic Jihadists.
It is not a mystery.
Nor was Munich nor the Tree of Life Synagogue.
They all constitute a different iteration operating within a different zeitgeist.
I prayed for people that I had only just read about, never met.
I have never heard of Colleyville, CBI, or Rabbi Cytron-Walker.
May the Almighty Deliver the Captives.
As He did in Egypt.
And throughout our generations.
After 11 hours of intense negotiations.
This is the time for reflection.
Rabbi Cytron-Walker is on the extreme-left side of the Jewish Political Spectrum. While he has not come out against Israel as an idea, he has supportive initiatives that would jeoporadize the safety of Jews in Israel. Charlie is not a bad person by any stretch of the imagination, simply a product of his environment. Reform Judaism requires a bachelor's degree (prior to graduate studies and subsequent ordination), usually taken in one of the social sciences. This serves to fuse Faith with Social Justice, adding an air of legitimacy to American progressive values.
Rabbi Cytron-Walker has spent his life at the forefront of radical social change, electing to adopt his wife’s surname as his own. Furthermore, he was worked with a variety of socially marginaled groups, prioritizing the needs of the most vulnerable in some of the most dangerous settings. While these things are positive on its face, it ignores the reality of choice. When faced with ultimatums, whose interest comes first?
If I were to sit down with Rabbi Walker-Cytron,
Perhaps over the same coffee that he offered the assailant.
If given two choices, should you protect your family first or the family of another?
Did you think that your “wokeness” would serve as a “get out of jail free card” in this type of situation?
Has this experience changed your view on Israeli security?
Which takes priority; external-autraism or community safety?
The gun used was not acquired legally but (instead) purchased illegally from the black market. How would increased gun restrictions–on legal gun owners–prevent foreign terrorists like this?
The media has spun this story, deferring to the narrative that Jews are oppressors and Muslims are victims. This is a laughable–yet widely held–view in the Arab World. We are their eternal antagonist, serving as the reason for drought, misfortune, poverty or wealth.
If you ask them why they hate us, they give us isolated reasons while rejecting the notion that they hate us outright.
They hate us because…
We are too rich.
We are too poor.
We are too smart.
We are too stupid.
We think we are too Holy.
We think we are just like them.
We are trying too much to be like them.
We are not assimilated enough.
We are too liberal.
We are too archaic.
In realistic terms, this creates a problem for many North American Jews.
Since many lack in Jewish education, reform offers easy access without prior knowledge.
As with everything, nothing valuable is free.
The more you study your heritage, the more you want to protect it.
It is natural to build a wall when threatened.
The Chinese spent their human capital doing exactly this.
While the rabbi is sincere, his ideology will guarantee disaster for our small community.
There are 15 million of us.
Billions that do not like us.
Jewish Lives Matter