Jews Are Going Underground

(Atlantic) Deborah Lipstadt - In Europe and the U.S., Jews have been repeatedly assaulted on the street. Anti-Semites seem to think it is open season on Jews. And maybe, given the many incidents, they are right. Most Jewish students on American campuses have not been subjected to overt acts of discrimination or verbal abuse. But many among them feel they have something to lose if they openly identify as Jews. If they are active in Hillel, the Jewish student organization, they may be informally barred from being active in progressive causes. Those who want to be elected to student government are learning to scrub their resumes clean of any overtly Jewish or pro-Israel activities. They are not abandoning their Jewish identity; they are hiding it. When Jews feel it is safer for them to go "underground" as Jews, something is terribly wrong - for them and for the society in which they live. Jews are taking anti-Semitism very seriously. Non-Jews must do the same. No healthy democracy can afford to tolerate anti-Semitism in its midst. It is one of the long-term signs of rot in that democracy. If you care about democracy, you should care about the Jews among you, and the anti-Semites too. The writer is professor of Holocaust history at Emory University.

2019-12-30 00:00:00

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