Are Three Dead Israelis More Important Than Other Murdered Teens?

Posted on July 1, 2014

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Why is the Jewish community so impacted by the kidnapping and murder of three young Jewish Israeli men? What about all of the other children who are kidnapped or killed? Why are these boys more important to the Jewish community?  The answer is strikingly simple: these boys are ours–a global community of Jews and Israelis.   Others children are another community’s kids.  That’s not to say that we don’t feel compassion for the families of other victims. It doesn’t mean we hold these victims to be more important than any other.  But this is an example of why Hate Crime legislation exists in many of the States.  These boys were kidnapped because they were Jewish Israelis.  The kidnappers could have kidnapped and killed three Druze Israelis, Christian Israelis, Muslim Israelis, Greek Orthodox Israelis, Armenian Israelis or Palestinian Israeli children. They did not. They could have selected one of each. They did not. They intentionally hunted for and took three vulnerable Jewish Israelis.  The message was clear. The intent was clear. The impact to the community has been clear.  When Hate Crime legislation has been enacted, it is done out of a recognition that when someone attacks members of a specific community with the intent to send a message, it is not only the immediate victim who is impacted, but an entire community that lives through the assault. 

The kidnapping and murder is a violation of our sense of security.  It hits deep into the core of Jews world-wide, in Israel and elsewhere.  It is a reminder that to much of the world, what happens to Jews and Israelis doesn’t really matter.  In our core, there is an impossible-to-define thread that connects all of us, living, dead, religious, secular…that ties us directly to the historical dislike, distrust, hatred, kidnapping, and murder of Jews.  Just when we get comfortable, someone pulls on the thread hard enough to remind us that what happened in Europe in the last century was only the most recent wide-scale attack on our Jewish community.  It wasn’t the first, it won’t be the last.  When three of our boys are taken from our collective spiritual home, our entire family feels the pain.

#bringbackourboys. #bringbackourgirls.  Whoever they are. Wherever they are. Anyone who kidnaps, and any community that supports or enables the kidnappers, deserves punishment individually and collectively.

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