Monday, October 13, 2014

Who and what is a Jew and if an Israeli professor named Shlomo Sand can't resign from being one can I ?


I have to admit I am luckier than professor Shlomo Sand for not being born in the Jewish State of Israel in the Levant ( #JSIL) and frankly for having a name that does not mark me definitively as a Jew. True I live day to day - more or less hand to mouth  I've never been in London or Paris. What I know about the cafes of my hometown New York is their exteriors since  I drop off and pick up their customers but I know little about their insides. It's possible that I might have taken Professor Sand to or from one of these places.

Professor Sand probably doesn't have the chronic tinnitus, back ache, or ADD that distract me. I remember a note that my second grade teacher Sonia Rosenberg sent to my mother:
Eugene is a lazy boy. When he is not lost in his daydreams he organizes and leads other pupils in disrupting my lessons. Please discipline your son.

Then there was Norman Greenwald, ( honestly!) my Basic Training Drill Sergeant at Fort Jackson, South Carolina  and his comment:

Weixel! Get! Your! Head! Out! Of! Your! Ass!

Sand probably sat still and listened to his teachers. He probably was a good soldier too. He is a professor who writes books that provoke intellectual controversies

Sand speaks Israeli "Hebrew." He thinks of Tel Aviv as his hometown. If he wants to quit being a Jew like he says he does he'd better drop this notion of Tel Aviv being his home town and he should master another language to a point where his accent won't stick in people's ears. A change of name would help as would a baptism. He should forget about being an Israeli too.

Me, I speak New York English plus I (barely) get along in Spanish. The New York that I love has benn pretty much pulled out from under my feet. A lot of its shell remains though which drives me even crazier. I recognize so many places and yet they aren't really there any more. I didn't live much in a Jewish zone any way.

My advice for the professor is relatively mild as is my own situation. Talk about being displaced, starting over, losing access to your favorite street corner! The words Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, Pakistan, Colombia and of course Palestine should never be forgotten.

Some people will never let Sand escape being a Jew no matter what he says or does. He should tell people like David Duke, (a compulsive risk taker and a master of sophistry, a man who pled guilty to tax fraud and who also pled to ripping off people who had faith in him to pay for gambling trips thereby betraying his cause by also disqualifying himself from holding public office)  believes "race" and "genetics" determine personal traits to kiss his ass. But it will take more than a declaration to make Sands' resignation real.