Joods Maastricht

Website van de Joodse Gemeente Maastricht

When do we start to catch the real cause of antisemitism?

Cobbler, stick to your last, is one of my favourite expressions. Too often we meet alleged experts who have an opinion on a matter that has nothing to do with their own field of expertise.

Therefore I must as a rabbi keep aloof from politics, so they told me recently during a debate that was clearly about a political subject. I thought it was almost right. When I just look around without looking to myself, I get overwhelmed by myriads of experts who think themselves all to be specialists on Israel and also acknowledge that they are not speaking personally and in private but that the speak on behalf of.

The media spent rightly at lot of attention for the tragedy that took place in London. The warning of these incidents is literally of vital importance. The grief is immense. I still miss nevertheless some information of our own safe country. Some attention was paid to it, but afterwards the attention was drawn towards the attack in London. Besides, the topic was not very sensational. There were no shocking images, it was all a little bit overdone. There were no victims and the attention of the world was also next to nothing.

I am talking about the statements on Facebook by some member of the city council of The Hague who called a group of Israeli High school students who visited the parliamentary SGP fraction Zionist terrorists and future child murderers and occupiers. The comment has been removed from Facebook, but the council member did not distance himself from his words (AD). The youth department of the SGP pressed charges against him.

Often people tell me that despite the rise of anti-Semitism and racism, we must acknowledge that our government is still kosher. Our government gives protection to every citizen without exception and is severe against extremism and intolerance. Also when extremism shows itself in a fashionable way, politicians will see through it.

This is the reason why I am surprised and shocked that a democratically chosen leader can and is allowed to express such anti-Semitic thoughts. That will finally be tolerated and repackaged is such a way that it looks fashionable and democratic.

Dear reader: this is the essence of the recent attack in London. Education, indoctrination, hate mongering and intolerance. It cannot be sufficiently stressed that the formation of a criminal can be found in the soundbites he heard during his childhood. How do we cope with that? We focus on the catastrophic consequences, we do not focus on prevention. That is not spectacular enough in order to get votes. You need to appear tolerant, you must think about your future electorate, you must make sure that your enemies will become your friends, also when they remain simply enemies, fashionably sitting on the front benches of the city council in our main cities.

I am sorry that I did not to refrain myself and I was talking politics. I should not have done so that unless politics is the result of education and training. The disaster of London is the result of a sick education, that remained tolerated. Just to show my medical knowledge when do we stop trying to cure the symptoms and do we try to catch the real cause of the disease?