I guess what tribe I belong to can’t only be explained on scientific, or genealogical lines. Maybe I simply shudder in a particular way when I hear the name ‘Adolf Hitler’. Maybe Jews aren’t related just by blood but in our synapses?
What can any of us do in response to the newer challenges – of anti-Semitism today? I would simply start by saying please open your heart or mind to what Jewish people themselves say needs to change. All too often in recent years, Jews warning journalists, politicians and others about anti Jewish prejudice have been accused of playing political games, of effectively ‘crying wolf’.
I’ve been called various things throughout my 39 years.
At school I was called ‘Pinocchio’, ‘Igor’ (the character in cartoon, ‘Count Duckula’) and ‘Gonzo’ and various other nicknames, owing to my prominent nose. I now plan to reclaim my family past, reclaim my name from its early 20th century past. I’m coming out as Andrew Kaufman.
In some cases, Jews don’t count as much as they should in contemporary identity politics. In an age of ‘what-about-ery’, those who think they’re on the ‘right side of history’ and ‘progressive’, seem less concerned about Jews than other minorities, largely believing Jews to be white, rich people and therefore not a typical ‘minority’.
it is very difficult to be open and to protest loudly when living under the most intolerable and oppressive forms of government. I can’t criticise those who remained silent. What I can criticise is those who remain silent now, who still repeat when it’s put to them, ‘why not remember the victims of the past?’ – “these things are better left in the past”.