Thursday, May 12, 2005

Thoughts on Yom HaAtzmaut from an armchair Zionist

“God bless America, my home, sweet home.”

I can’t imagine it. I can’t imagine packing up practically everything I own, leaving friends, family, job behind, and making aliyah, as my brother did when he was in his mid-twenties and my parents did when they were in their early sixties. Maybe it’s loyalty. Maybe it’s laziness. Maybe it’s just plain inertia. I just know I can’t do it.

I’m an American through and through. And not just in my secular life. I can’t imagine living in a country divided so starkly between datiim (“religious”) and chilonim (“secular”), with non-Orthodox but practicing Jews denied even the right to be married by their own rabbis. (I’ll admit that divorce is more problematic, but marriage?) In this country, when women sing at Holocaust memorial programs, Orthodox men get up and walk out. In that country, when women sing prayers and lein Torah (chant from the Bible scroll) at the Kotel HaMaaravi/Western Wall, they get physically attacked. I think I’ll stay where I can davven in peace, both figuratively and literally, in more ways than one—don’t think that the “matzav”/”situation” doesn’t enter into this.

Lihyot am chofshi b’artzénu . . . To be a free people in our land . . .“ And yet, that, too, is my land, the only place where a Jew can always go and they’ll always take him or her in. The only place where Jewish holidays are national holidays, where you don’t have to worry about losing your job for taking off from work on a festival. A place in which you needn't live in Boro Park to see a Purim parade, or sukkot by the dozens.

May HaShem spread over it sukkat sh'lomecha, His canopy of peace.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

When i'm bad, i go here :

Tue Aug 22, 05:28:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Not a bad place to go, but what's with the sale of stones from the Kotel?

Tue Aug 22, 08:30:00 AM 2006  

Post a Comment

<< Home

<< List
Jewish Bloggers
Join >>