It’s Not All Ferguson

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4 Responses

  1. Eliezer Eisenberg says:

    There’s a Yiddish expression “Vi ah yovon in Sukkeh, ” meaning something totally incongruous. How wonderful indeed to encounter exceptional people who allow the tzelem Elokim to shine through.

  2. Raymond says:

    If I am not mistaken, I think it was the Lubavitcher Rebbe who called the United States a compassionate nation. I think that Rabbi Adlerstein’s encounter with those policemen are a good example of that. Here are a couple of other examples of that: A local public library deliberately changed its weekly closed day from Sunday to Saturday in order to accommodate the high percentage of Orthodox Jews that make up its clientele. The largely gentile supermarket I shop at has a special section where they serve ready-to-eat kosher food. When I encounter such things, I say to myself, “Only in America can such incredible things happen!”

    I have often wondered where the United States stands when it comes to its Jews. After all, Jews have felt comfortable elsewhere over the centuries. In the Roman Empire, it was considered so fashionable to become Jewish, that 10% of its population were converts to Judaism, which is an extremely high percentage for such a phenomena. Perhaps the greatest Torah scholars who ever lived, lived in the Golden Age of Spain back in the Middle Ages. Rabbi Yehuda HaLevi not only wrote the Kuzari there, but also wrote romantic poetry for secular audiences as well. In Germany, Jews called Berlin the New Jerusalem. Yet life for Jews in such places ultimately ended in the worst of tragedies.

    Is this the ultimate fate for us Jews here in America as well, or are things different here, because this nation was founded by Puritan Christians who were so focused on returning Christianity to Torah teachings, that they even referred to themselves as Old Testament Christians? Does it matter that Thomas Jefferson wanted this country’s official seal to be a picture of our Jewish ancestors crossing the Reed Sea? Does it make a significant difference that when Americans conquered more and more of the continental United States, driving out the American Indians, that they compared themselves to the time when Jews who had been in the Sinai Desert, had taken over the land of Israel, driving out the seven barbaric nations who had been living there? Does it matter that virtually every Presidential inauguration, has involved our Presidents never invoking the specifically Christian G-d, but virtually always invoking the G-d of our Torah? Is it more than an accident that Presidents such as the great Abraham Lincoln and Woodrow Wilson often used strong Biblically imagery in their speeches? Does it matter that the President one might least expect it from, namely Richard Nixon, saved Israel during the Yom Kippur war by sending them even more emergency war planes than they had asked for?

    I do not of course have any powers of prophecy, nor the gift of hindsight, to know the answers to these questions. Meanwhile, all I can say is, that it is my hope that America as a whole never forgets the promise that G-d made to Abraham back in the Book of Genesis, namely that “Those who bless the Jews will be blessed, and those who curse the Jews, G-d will curse.” At least as things stand now, may G-d continue to bless this great nation.

  3. Yechiel Mashiach says:

    What a beautiful story! We are the children of Avrohom Avinu who is one of the Uspizin! How can we have Avrohom Avinu come as our guest on Succos? Every Orthodox Jewish family must be like our forefather and welcome Jews who are not Orthodox for Succos! Otherwise our Zaide will not recognize us! Our we really his children? Jews who are not Orthodox have Neshamos too!

  4. Miriam says:

    I am glad you had a positive interaction with these officers from the LAPD and glad they were willing and able to help your friend. I am even glad that you shared the story!

    But I do wonder on what basis you say that this interaction is a “better reflection of a police department that does a great job training and delivering officers who are a source of pride to the force. We must remember that this kind of interaction is far more typical of the performance of the people who put their lives on the line to protect us, than the high-profile stories of those who, under pressure or for other reasons, fail to uphold the standards they are taught.”

    One anecdote cannot outweigh other anecdotes without some sort of additional evidence…

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