Erica Brown’s timely and insightful essay, “Alone Again” (Sept. 5), describes a reality that a majority of Jews simply refuse to acknowledge.
There are many among us who bristle at the notion that we are and always have been a people apart — isolated not by choice but by a pervasive centuries-old animus that continues unabated to this day.
A good number of our co-religionists argue that what transpired in the past should remain a thing of the past. Yes, they begrudgingly concede, we Jews were forced to reside in ghettos and were routinely expelled from countries. Yes, there were pogroms where mobs, with raised fists, set out to destroy synagogues and Jewish owned concerns. But what of it, they might suggest? That was all in the past — things are different now.
Well, like it or not, we suddenly find ourselves face to face with the very same malevolence and egregious behavior our people were once subjected to in years past. And that is precisely what makes us a people apart.
The fictitious blood libel and anti-circumcision legislation are both making a comeback, while “Mein Kampf” has become a must read in some quarters. Jews are suddenly finding themselves subjected to anti-Semitic outbursts throughout Europe as mobs, shouting “Kill the Jews,’ attack worshipers returning from synagogues. One need only critically analyze the unbalanced news coverage in the print and broadcast media during the recent Gaza fighting to appreciate how the Jewish state of Israel has, once again, been isolated and vilified.
Alone Again should perhaps be replaced by Forever Alone.