Friday, December 13, 2019

This Means War

There is no war on Christmas. Christmas as a cultural phenomenon starts flowing out of every faucet before Thanksgiving. Even if you have no intention of celebrating Christmas, you cannot avoid it. The trappings of American Christmas celebrations bombard you at every turn.

It may have become more commercial and more secular through the years, but Christmas is what each family chooses to make it within their own home. It is not under attack. No one is endangered for celebrating Christmas.

What is under attack in our country is Judaism. The recent murders at a Jewish Market in New Jersey are just another example of a steady stream of violent acts which have been building over the last several years. A possible change in the law to identify Judaism as a nationality rather than a religion harkens to similar decrees during the Third Reich.

We can’t be silent about this. This shouldn’t be a concern only for our Jewish neighbors and friends. At a time of year when we share common themes of lighting candles to illuminate the darkness, we need to reach beyond our usual circles of celebration to acknowledge the fear and anger of this moment in our nation. We need to say, “I will be there for you. You are not alone.”

There is no war on Christmas. But there is plainly a growing attack on those who are perceived as “different” in this county. First you are different. Then you are feared, then hated, then “othered”. Then you are in danger.

Those who look different, worship differently, are differently abled, love and/or identify differently are every bit as American and deserving of acceptance and respect as those who represent the predominant cultural attributes. This isn’t just a nice thing to say. It is a foundational belief of our nation.

This is the kind of war that can only be waged with the fierce persistence of acts of love and justice. I am searching for ways to show my Jewish friends, neighbors, and coworkers that I am an ally in a dark time.

Join me.


Ice and Fire Festival Advent Calendar

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