Imagine that from tragedy sprang hope. That from murder, came unity.
It’s a beautiful image of rebirth that gives us hope that the world can be a better place. It’s the stuff that makes us get up each morning with a sense of optimism.
Does that story truly work for ALL scenarios? Does the sentiment described above have a uniquely linear orientation to be truly positive, or is it an uplifting message regardless of the actors and their roles?
Consider a different scenario than the one that actually played out in 2014, when an “incel,” an involuntary celibate man by the name of Elliot Rodger went on a killing spree in California because girls would not go out with him. Imagine that in the days following his murders that various women from sororities at the university took his message to heart and went out of their way to be nice to all men they encountered. Wouldn’t that have been a heartwarming gesture for the many men who felt neglected by women?
That approach of “restorative justice” did not happen. Rodger was roundly denounced and the incel community was labeled as a dangerous group that unjustly targets women. These celibate men were further marginalized by society and denounced for having horribly hateful ideas which only gained legitimacy in the cramped echo chamber of their social media consoles.
The victims did not reach out to their attackers, as society played out its normal process of criticizing the perpetrators. It made no demand of the victims, as to do so would have suggested that they were not truly innocent but had a shared responsibility in the attack against their persons.
People rallied to the victims, not the attackers.
If immediately after the attack, a male member of the university school board said that the voices of the marginalized men must be heard and that women should be kinder to men, people would not have come to his defense. Women’s groups would have demanded his resignation by the end of the day.
But our world doesn’t always operate consistently. For 99.8% of the world, there is a common language, which could be called base 10 in mathematics. For Jews, there is a different standard, base 666; it is the calculus based on the formula that Jews are evil and can never be truly innocent.
So people came to defend a Black member of the Jersey City school board who said that the Black murderers of Jews had a valid point that Jews were “brutes” ruining the community. People considered that Jews caused their own demise for moving into a predominantly Black neighborhood.
Because dead Jews are not the same as dead women.
Such attitude is not limited to the non-Jewish world. Even in its own progressive papers, Jews are called upon to consider how their own actions cause people to hate and kill them.
The New York paper The Jewish Week ran a story on January 3, 2020 about the aftermath of the shooting death of people in a kosher supermarket in Jersey City, NJ just weeks earlier. It was a story meant to inspire.
The article noted how Blacks and Jews “United” for a holiday charity drive. It described how Jews and Blacks came together to bring food and toys to the Black community in Jersey City for Christmas.
I had to read the article twice to make sure I caught the facts underlying the message.
The article did not write about the Black community delivering presents to the Jews for Hanukkah as would have met the natural linear thinking of reconciliation. No, no. Too simple. This was a story where the Jews tacitly admitted their guilt at being killed for not being good neighbors and not getting to know the people in the community.
Hannukah 2019 was turned into the holiday of Purim, where everything was upside down. Not only were Jews killed but they voluntarily handed out sweets to their attackers and apologized for getting their dirty Jewish blood on the attackers’ hands. Another “al chet” to consider during Yom Kippur: too many al chets.
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