So why does this bother me so much?


Paul Eisen

In the days when I used to attend solidarity rallies, sometimes, amongst the Christians, lefties and good Jews there’d be a sprinkling of Muslim kids wearing suicide bomber headbands.

“Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear!” clucked all the grey-haired do-gooders and sometimes one of the good Jews would deliver a helpful lecture to the kids, outlining to them what was helpful and what was not.

But I said nothing.

A couple of years later when I came into contact with Ingrid Zuendel, I visited her Zundelsite and came across what are commonly described as anti-semitic cartoons. You know the type – Golem-type figures with stereotypical Ashkenazic features engaged in all kinds of nefarious practices. “”Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear!” I clucked to myself and even began to compose an email to Ingrid giving her the benefit of my experience of what was helpful and what was not.

But I didn’t. Again, I said nothing.

On both occasions I said nothing because in my head echoed words I’d picked up at a Marc Ellis lecture sometime previously, words which chimed well with my own feelings on the subject: “It is not for the oppressor to tell the oppressed how to resist”.

So why does this bother me so much?
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