Tuesday, June 16, 2015

It's Not My Responsibility

There are things that you never say to a Jew. They "ring our bells"; either they drive us crazy, or they drive us to tears. Chief among these things is the too-often-used excuse, "I was just following orders."

I think second one that drives me crazy is "it's not my responsibility." Sometimes, that's a reasonable thing to say, but often it is the wrong thing. I posted a video here that an American Jew made in Ireland. Three small stores...all willing to do business with Iran, North Korea, Sudan...just not Israel. 

The most reasonable response I received was from a man who has received death threats because he supports Israel. Despite this and his request for anonymity, he made some very good points. Here are some of them:
Let me put this in context, Ami filmed 3 small stores in Ireland. He claims Ireland is the ground zero of BDS. Untrue. One students union on ONE university on the island of Ireland boycotts Israel. How many U.S. Universities and student unions boycott Israel now? Let's not be hypocritical here.

Also Irish people are polite. We don't argue face to face with strangers. I have sat at tables or on trains and listened to people say things I completely disagree with but culturally we just let it go over our heads and ignore it. Why bother wasting energy ?

Ami is American, he speaks fast and rattles of all these terms like gulag etc, by and large the staff look uninterested in what he has to say and are just like "yeah" and smiling and nodding. That is something you do in Ireland in an uncomfortable situation is smile and nod in the hope that person will just go away.

Americans presume because we are white we are somehow similar. No we have different cultures.

No one talks about leprechauns in Ireland , Ami starts his video with "I am here in Ireland home to Guinness,Leprechauns and Lucky charm cereals" firstly Guinness is Owned by a French company; secondly Hollywood is more obsessed with Leprechauns as are American tourists. Most irish laugh at such talk: as for Lucky Charm cereal; I had to google that as I never heard of it, turns out to be a sugary breakfast cereal in the U.S.

Imagine if I did an uncover report of BDS on US campuses and started off by saying "Here I Am in America ,home to morbid obesity, gun crime and slavery". It is just low and Ami and other American Zionists won't win over a single Irish person If the first thing they are going to do is insult Irish people.

All the major supermarkets stock Israeli products, Dead Sea Products are easily available.

These are small hippy food coops, but do you know what is funny, there are probably more lefty co-ops in your state boycotting Israel than in all of Ireland but it seems to be such an American trait to look across the pond and say "Oh look at what those awful people are doing over there, while ignoring what is happening in their backgarden".

For the last two days, all I have seen is comments mocking Roman Catholics (I am not Catholic) but I am offended to see Jews and Evangelical Americans express so much sectarianism. I have seen so many comments mocking the Irish Famine, something which is very painful for the Irish.

As for your paragraph stating Protestants support Israel and Catholics don't in Ireland, that is a very dangerous stereotype and one that simply isn't true. If you would actually like to learn more without reacting in a knee jerk way, I am happy to answer some questions.
So I wrote the gentleman and offered to post his response. While he does say that the video is unfair, nowhere does he say it is not his responsibility. Rather, he is doing what he can ... to the point that people have threatened his life. Wow.

It's not my responsibility is wrong in so many ways. Is it Israel's responsibility to help people injured in an earthquake in Nepal or Haiti? We are continents away...and yet we answered, we flew, we saved lives.

It is our responsibility to fly to Turkey, Kenya, even to places in the United States hard hit by devastating natural events (and man-made ones as well)?

In Judaism, there is the concept, we are all responsible...one for the other. Long before there were Jews or Christians, the concept was taught to man..."Am I my brother's keeper?" Cain asked God.

When your nation does something unjust, how much more so is it your responsibility to correct, to balance, to accept that it IS your responsibility to counter evil?

Last summer, as my nation staggered from over 4,000 rocket attacks which came immediately after the brutal and agonizing murder of three teenage boys...I was bombarded with anti-Israel and even anti-Semitic comments. From Ireland, I was told that Hitler should have finished the job; that we were Nazis (even though there were no concentration camps, no gas chambers, no starvation and no systematic genocide in Gaza). My sons were cursed from Ireland. My country wrongly accused.

So to the person who sent me the tweet above - it IS your responsibility. It is. I went to a wedding tonight and returned a short time ago...as I often do, I checked the headlines. It says that Israel has announced that it is ready to step in to prevent a massacre in Syria...not our own people, but people who need someone to step in and safe them.

It is your responsibility. If you can't stop it, you can at least condemn it. Go to the three stores that are boycotting Israel and demand to know why they are not boycotting Syria, Iran, North Korea, Sudan.

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