After having the unpleasant experience of reading a small number of articles through which the reactions from numerous American Jewish rights groups officially released statements, amongst these groups included two statespersons from the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) plus spokespersons from JCPA (Jewish Council for Public Affairs) and AJWS (American Jewish World Service); the commentary from these and other rights groups were virtually interchangeable. The only addition to the Jewish rights groups’ commentary was the addition of mentioning how Jews should be more sensitive to racial injustice due to the historic injustices the Jewish people have faced over the dozens of centuries, an addition which probably was more destructive than it was informative. It is not that the Jews have not suffered from injustices since the times of slavery in Egypt to the current problems facing Jews across many European cities, on campuses throughout the world including within the United States, across the Arab and Muslim worlds, and even within the borders of Israel from terrorist groups and oft even from fellow Jews who have joined those for whom the simple existence of Jews in Israel is sufficient offense in their hearts and minds; it is that such prefacing is unnecessary and even more-so if it is being implemented in order to spur an emotional response from other Jews, as these were general statements which would be published throughout the United States and potentially beyond and as they appeared to separate the Jews from the rest of society and place within them a special ability to be the adjudicators of social justice, an ability based on offenses which the majority of Jews have never experienced, especially in the United States. But what was also a basis for most of these commentaries was the implication that there had been a miscarriage of justice by the grand jury not deciding to indict Officer Darren Wilson in the shooting of Michael Brown on that fateful day in Ferguson, Missouri.
What struck me about these virtually identical reactions to the grand jury’s verdict was not so much their refusal to even consider any of the evidence from the investigation but their ability to automatically side with the rioters cause and complaints even as they claimed that the rioting was not an appropriate answer. Then came their broadening their convictions of American society for not having actually made any real progress over the past half a century since the Civil Rights Act was passed in 1964 and the presumption that racism was still rampant across American society. They then went on in many cases to point to particular evidences that such racism was still prevalent which included such items as that black students are suspended or expelled from our public schools at a much higher rate than white students, a higher rate of arrests and convictions and longer jails sentences for black Americans over white Americans, and, as was stated in one commentary, “there are many other examples that show the continuing racial divide.” These cited perceptions give away the progressive liberal perspective which shapes the lens with which these rights groups view the world and how they simply accept every canard which paints American society with a broad brush of having made no progress over the last fifty years despite the glaring evidence that shows a world of change has taken place transforming American society into a virtually post-racial America. The reason these groups refuse to credit the average American and the society they collectively produce with having made any progress is because if progress has been achieved then they have less of a cause celeb with which to bludgeon the social fabric and demand continued funding in huge proportions in order to continue to collect their over bloated salaries and pontificate ponderously at great length about the ills of society which their social engineering will eventually lead the way to an enlightened society. These are the same people and the same perspective which looks across the United States and continues to believe that there has been no progress in combating pollution and feel that the air quality, water quality and the general levels of pollution are identical to what is was fifty years ago. They continue to believe that Los Angeles is smog bound, Denver sits in a brown dome of polluted air, Lake Erie is still choked with nitrates and no fish live within and the Cuyahoga River still catches fire every summer. I guess the correct concept here would be for these people to wake up and smell the roses, even on the banks of the Cuyahoga River which if it is flashing anything it is the bright sunlight through the crisp clean air sparking off the scales of the tiny fish living in that once polluted river.
The main realization that came over me was how these same Jewish organizations could continuously protest that they knew best how to resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict if only those Israelis in Prime Minister Netanyahu’s ruling coalition would listen to their sagely wisdoms. These were the same American Jews who agreed with one single idea from the entire eight years during President George W. Bush’s administration; and that was the idea for Israel to pull up every last single Jewish resident, every last IDF and other security forces, every single Jewish business, farm and factory from within the entirety of the Gaza Strip and turn it all over to Arab rule trusting that Mahmoud Abbas would then transform the areas freed of any Jewish influences into the Arab version of Hong Kong or Shanghai. Well, as we all know, that worked out just exactly as predicted, just not how they had predicted and instead became the Hamas run rocket launching and tunnel headquarters financed and armed by Qatar and Iran and dedicated to wiping out Israel and then murdering every Jew on the planet. Now many of these same geniuses are the ones in the fore calling for Israel to repeat this disengagement this time with Judea and Samaria so that the rest of Israel can enjoy the same horrors as Sderot and the Gaza Strip kibbutzim and towns with twenty-four/seven rockets raining down on their lives except this time the rockets will be falling on the most densely populated and industrial heartlands of Israel as well as onto Ben Gurion International Airport really giving President Obama reasons to ban all commercial flights into Israel as well as most of the world joining in on that boycott. Simply put, such an idea would be the fastest way to guarantee either the death of Israel or the final war between Israel and any Arab presence between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. Such a move would lead within a few short months to an us or them situation leading inexorably to a final war.
One might think that there would be a name for people who no matter the evidence they refuse to alter a single iota of their perfect little plan to right all the wrongs in the world. Those who constantly will point out the obvious truth which makes their presentation of these tried and failed ideas worth another go around, that being that they were not the ones entrusted with the reins of power and if they would be trusted, then this time it will work as it should in a perfect world. Never mind that their promise sounds remarkably like the promise made by those who have tried these exact same ideas before when they were the ones promising they could make it work. I think I have figured out what the appeal of making such ridiculous and absurd claims has to be; they have noted that those who made this claim before and failed just as miserably as every other attempt at righting the ills of human societies, those leaders lived extravagantly with every opulence and overindulgence imagined by man and never suffered for want of any sort and were completely removed from the squalor and degradations that they were causing. Perhaps that is their hope for getting it right, that it will be right from their viewpoint and not so much the rest of us. Whatever Pollyannish thinking they try to pass off as eternal wisdom they are selling as the solution, be it for the rioting resulting from the correct verdict reached by the Ferguson grand jury or their solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, be assured that any prudent and wise person should steer well clear of their suggestions and take a more reasoned route which has proven prudential and workable in the past rather than trust those who claim that if only we let them take charge this time all will be well. Somehow calling these people progressive is almost as absurd as when we referred to them as liberals as they are about as close to libertarian as they are to progress, true and real progress.
Beyond the Cusp