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Allowing The Fox Into The Hen House

I have taken my Jewish friends to task a few times about their inability to tell a story that is easily the most compelling story in mankind’s history. I give them grief over the way they have allowed others to invert their history to the point where often their best and brightest have literally gone over to the other side.

I believe that it is a simple matter to fix. All we have to do is start teaching the importance of identity, and how it plays a central role in everything. If Jews are to turn this ship around it will be because they remember something that kept them together through three thousand years of exile, that their family and tribe MUST come first. There is no shame in admitting that often assimilation becomes the benchmark for success – this is normal in a world that prizes fitting in above all else. The shame comes in allowing assimilation to steal your identity. You can integrate without assimilating and for all indigenous people this should be the goal.

Now the odd thing is that it is the Jews who gave the world the blueprint for a successful society that can integrate without assimilating. It was the Jews who had such powerful strength in their identity that they withstood monumental pressure to accede and assimilate, so it’s baffling to me why we we are seeing such self-loving Jews who have forgotten the importance of Jewish identity. But then I did some digging and found some very disturbing trends that I believe are leading to this.

You are fox-hensallowing the fox into the hen house -you let anti-Israel asshats have full access to your young people. They are exposed to them in Hillels, Birthright trips, Jewish groups supposedly dedicated to teaching Jewish culture and identity. You are literally giving your young people away. You should be exposing them to the other side’s narratives and propaganda, but you should be doing it in a controlled manner, not just willy nilly with no thought. This idea about a big tent is fine, but you don’t have to let asshats light the tent on fire.

You don’t understand the depths to which these people will sink. They will pretend to be pro-Israel. They will say all the right things in public and then in private they will take these young people aside and tell them “the truth.” It’s an abuse of trust that is almost incomprehensible. But when you do catch these people and when they do expose themselves, you rarely take them to task. You just shrug and say “They are still Jews.”

I have seen normally rational people take completely ridiculous positions defending people who are openly anti Israel, using the opposite of logic to defend them. I hear statements like “No, that person loves Israel, they live there” or “They said they love Israel” when the people in question openly support organisations dedicated to the destruction of Israel. My favorite was when one singer, who is relatively famous, said “ I do not believe in BDS, but I think boycotting settlements is ok.” When one looks on her webpage under “organisations I support” there are four organisations who openly espouse BDS to which she has donated time and money. She also supports other anti-Israel organisations that are dedicated to smearing Israel’s name in public. When asked what pro Israel organisations she supports, she refused to answer. Now is that person really pro-Israel and anti BDS? Actions speak louder than words.

I wrote this Facebook post a few months ago and oddly enough some people didn’t get it. Perhaps I was too subtle, but I will repost it in the hope that some of you might get it as well.

“I had a girlfriend, I really loved her, I loved her so much that I wanted her to be perfect, so every day I told her she was too fat, and that she was a horrible cook. That way I knew she would work hard to correct those flaws. I made certain that if anyone said anything nice about her, that I said something to criticize her. That way she would never stop working at becoming better, because I loved her so much. I told her that she had really bad fashion sense and that her taste in music was horrible, and I made sure that every single day I told her at least one thing about her that I really didn’t like – because after all, if I didn’t she might not try to be better. I only criticized so much because I loved her. I never said anything nice because that’s not how you show your love. Sound stupid? I thought so too. Think about that.”

Sadly people often don’t use their critical thinking skills. Oh that person said they love Israel, never mind that I have never seen them do anything but criticize, they said it so it must be true…..

I have heard horror stories from some of my young Jewish friends, only they didn’t realize how horrific their stories were. Stories of going to Hillel and having a trusted adviser telling them “Israel is often the bad guy here. Watch this video but don’t tell your parents where you saw it” or worse, going on a Birthright trip and having one of the trips adults “secretly” taking them to the “west bank” to see “the truth” and then propagandizing them. What young person isn’t going to believe a trusted someone who “let’s them in on a secret”? The abuse of trust is truly mind-blowing. That’s literally all it takes. They are raised thinking Israel is perfection, but not perfect enough to live there, so they are already seeing contradictions. How great can Israel be if my parents don’t want to live there? They are told they are indigenous to Israel, that it’s their ancestral homeland, that everything Jewish comes from there. Then they are told that Judea and Samaria are where the Arabs live and that Jews should not. Tell me that is not confusing to someone who is young and just finding their way. Contradictions.

I was raised Catholic and I remember learning about certain sects that would beat themselves bloody in penance for the original sin. They would sometimes whip themselves to the bone. When I asked the Priest why they would do that, he said “To atone for the sins of the flesh.” When I asked him why I should atone for someone else’s sins he said “You are responsible for the sins of all mankind.” I thought it was bullshit then, and I think it’s bullshit now. We are not our brother’s keeper and we are not responsible for the sins of others unless we could act to prevent them. I don’t think all Jews are responsible for the actions of a few, and you shouldn’t either.

You wonder why I am talking about this stuff? You are fighting a war, and you are losing. You are vastly outnumbered and you are outgunned, but history has a way of evening the playing field. You have allies who will stand with you, and most importantly, you are the good guys, you just have to remember that.

So here’s the gist of it. Firstly, do your research and due diligence. Do not donate money to organizations or federations that do anti Israel things, and DON’T just take their word for it – actually do some research. Just because someone says all the right things, doesn’t mean they do them.

Secondly, don’t just blindly trust anyone. You would think this would be the last thing I would have to teach Jews or Indians, but we have a tendency to trust people based on their words. I suggest carefully looking at actions.

Thirdly, don’t take responsibility for things out of your control, but act to change them. BDS is not the problem, BDS is a symptom.

Things are going to get better, but we have to make them better.

About the author

Picture of Ryan Bellerose

Ryan Bellerose

A member of the indigenous Metis people, Ryan grew up in the far north of Alberta, Canada with no power nor running water. In his free time, Ryan plays Canadian Rules Football, reads books, does advocacy work for indigenous people and does not live in an Igloo.
Picture of Ryan Bellerose

Ryan Bellerose

A member of the indigenous Metis people, Ryan grew up in the far north of Alberta, Canada with no power nor running water. In his free time, Ryan plays Canadian Rules Football, reads books, does advocacy work for indigenous people and does not live in an Igloo.
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