I haven’t posted in a while, but I had a sobering conversation today. I am a special education teacher. I work in an environment almost completely surrounded by blacks, and I keep my yarmulke on. I have a girl who substitutes in my class from time to time. She’s very nice. She’s from Guyana. She was telling me about the house her family owns in Guyana, and that her whole family is here in he states. I asked what her family does with a house there, and she said it’s a two family house. They rent out the bottom floor, and use the top for family who visits, or sometimes rent out the top to tourists. I jokingly said I’d love to go to Guyana for a visit, and she says, “No, you’re a rich Jew. You’d be beaten and robbed in two minutes flat”. I was a bit taken back, and asked if she thought I was a rich Jew. She said, “of course you are, all Jews are rich”. She then asked why I think Jews are hated. Mind you, she is not a mean angry lady, just a young 20 something person. I countered with asking if there was a problem with the expectation of being robbed as a cultural norm, and she said, and I quote, “you are rich, and Guyana people are poor. Of course you should be robbed”.
I thought about this and responded, you know, if you went to the poorest Jewish part of Israel, you may be beaten on if you dress immodestly. But you’d still wake up with your wallet. It seemed to give her pause for thought. But maybe not.
Throwing a Congregant Under the Bus - During the return flight from a recent trip to the US, I was seated next to an elderly woman who was absolutely giddy with anticipation and 'over the moon'...
1 week ago