Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ever Again, a must see film

Last night I attended the Phoenix Anti Defamation League’s film series which presented Ever Again, a documentary about world hate.  It was, in a word, disturbing. The film examines the resurgence of violent Anti Semitism and terrorism that threatens Europe and all of Western civilization. It exposes the dangerous Islamic extremism and culture of death being preached from the mosques of Europe’s major cities and its impact on the recent attacks in Madrid and London. It examines the new Neo-Nazism in Germany and the shifts from the traditional Anti Semitism of the right to the Anti Semitism of the extreme left, and it raises disturbing questions about our future.

The film’s conclusion echoes Edmund Burke’s warning, "The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."

Our moderator shared that just this past week, three synagogues in PARIS were destroyed.  I had no idea that the situation was so out of control outside of the U.S.  But these people don’t just hate Jews. They also hate Americans. And they are being programmed as youths to be haters.

As I said to my friend Robert and his wife afterwards, in a way, I wish I hadn’t seen it. It’s one of those films that changes your life in a way that you know you will never be the same again.  I didn’t realize I was living such a sheltered life here in the U.S.

As a young Jewish girl, my parents decided to move out of a small town in Rhode Island where we were one of the only Jewish families, to a town that was 90% Jewish. My last personal Anti Semetic experience happened when I went to a party in Rhode Island, when I was fourteen, and I ignored the comment and buried the remark deep in my consciousness. And that was it, for 20 years or so.

Coincidentally, yesterday there was a story in the St. Cloud University newspaper about our project, and I noticed there was a comment posted. It is, in fact, an Anti-Semetic remark. 

I deliberate about what to post in response, as we simply haven’t discussed a policy in regards to these matters.  When I visited the same story online this morning, it looked like the school had removed the comment, and the ability to comment for all readers.  Now it's back up.  Is leaving it unanswered, showing this evidence of hate, a more "teachable moment" than trying to combat it with truthful statements? We don't have time to answer every hateful comment on the Internet. Or do we?

After seeing the movie about the resurgence of hate last night, (and this was filmed in 2006) not today, 3 years later, when Muslem women in Fort Lauderdale are chanting horrific remarks, I realize that our project is a critical tool in the battle to educate people.  I am more motivated then ever before to continue sharing our message of hope and tolerance. I hope you, too, will spread the word.

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