Here's the Horse Sense: Contrary to our historical image as a place of refuge from the problems in the world, America may not be that place for Jews much longer.
The U. K. Telegraph published a story about a Jewish family in Britain that are finding that it is no longer safe for Jews to live in their country, so they are moving to America. They thought about moving to Israel, but chose America instead. They believe they will be safe here and are moving to Arizona. They have two teenage children, one which is in college with plans to go to Berkeley. When I read all of that my heart broke. I wanted to reach out to these people and inform them that they may be making the wrong decision. I found myself surprised by and fearful for this family. They are making the wrong decision if they want to be safe.
Britain is the country out of which our nation started. It holds a special place for me personally as it is the land from which my ancestors came. As a nation, the roots from America to Britain are deep and the ties have been strong since we settled our major differences in the American Revolution and the War of 1812. Frequently things that happen in Europe, especially in Britain, become things that follow over to America and happen here, too. Sometimes that's good, sometimes it's bad. This time it's bad, it's very, very bad.
The family in the story, I believe, are making the wrong decision. Why the wrong decision? Because America has a growing undercurrent of anti-semitism these days. The son who will attend Berkeley will be surprised to find it is not as open to Jews as their family hopes. Just this past year there have been stories reported about anti-semitism at that school and others around our country. And this has spread from other parts of the world to infect our nation.
Europe is in terrible shape. The Washington Post is reporting that after the rise of antisemitism and the terror attacks in France, Jews are planning an exodus so they can be safe. Fox News has also reported similar stories. JNS.org has reported on a new study called White Papers Of Hate. It reports that racism, xenophobia, and radical nationalist movements are on the rise in 19 European countries. The 1000 page study reports on incidents of anti-Semitism and hate crimes against religious minorities and immigrants between 2012 and 2013.
Just a few weeks ago, on Friday night and Saturday morning, January 9th and 10th, Jews who worship at the Grand Synagogue in Paris did not have services. It was the first time since the Nazis occupied Paris during World War II. The synagogue was closed for security reasons.
Yahoo News is reporting that hundreds of Jewish tombs are being defaced in France. The level of anti-Semitism in Europe is increasing.
In France in 1999 there were approximately 80 reported anti-Semitic incidents. In each of the following years the there were at least 400. And there were over 600 in the first half of 2014. The Jewish populace in France makes up less than 1% of the total population, but they are victims of 50% of the crimes the French government classify as racist.
Within a one week period in the summer of 2014, 8 French synagogues were attacked, one of which was fire bombed. A kosher supermarket and a pharmacy owned by Jews were looted. And a mob of over 400 people were shouting, "Slit Jews throats." and "Death to Jews."
Due to safety, few Jews attend public schools in France anymore. Most attend religious schools, many of which are Catholic schools.
France is just an example of things that are happening in other European countries, too. Italians have protested Israel and called for a boycott of Jewish merchants. In Germany there have also been mobs shouting anti-Jewish rhetoric. And there have been crimes and other anti-Semitic acts throughout Europe. Places like Brussels, Frankfurt, and London are among the many that have seen these incidents recently. And this past weekend a terror attack against Jews occurred in Denmark.
Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu is calling on Jews to move to Israel to be safe. And he's wise to do it.
While many who are against Jews claim it's because they don't agree with actions and policies of Israel's government, when European Jews are attacked, it really isn't about Israel's government. It's about hatred of Jews.
So, as they have many times over the millennia, Jews are having to leave to remain safe. No people in world history have suffered the repeated attacks and prejudice against them that the Jews have. Things are too reminiscent of what happened in Germany in the 1930s. If you have ever spent any time studying what happened during the Holocaust (and if you haven't, YOU NEED TO), you can understand the concerns rising among Jews around the world. I've been an avid student of what happened in Germany during World War II and honored to have met, on 3 different occasions in my life, survivors of those Nazi concentration camps. Their stories will keep you up at night (which is a good thing because we should all be disturbed by the evil that man is capable of).
As the problems rise in Europe these days, we are also seeing some of those attitudes rise in America, too, and we should all be very concerned. On Sunday, Gatewaypundit.com reported that 30 homes in Madison, Wisconsin were painted with anti-Semitic slurs. Anti-Semitism is not limited to the Middle East or Europe, this sickness is even in our own backyard here in America.
(Yes, I said left. The Nazis were fascists, which are leftists, not hard right conservatives that the left has tried to say they were. Their ideology is a socialist ideology with only slight differences from communism, which Hitler fully understood. But the left tries to call them right wing to demonize conservatism. It's been such a successful demonization that I've had many Jewish friends over the years tell me that the reason they don't trust conservatives is that they fear they are too close to becoming Nazis. They don't really understand that conservatives are really the ones who are more concerned about their safety and freedom than the left.)
Talk to any person who has come to America that lived under a totalitarian regime and they will tell you that America is moving in the same direction that they saw their countries move as they fell to totalitarianism, be it the Nazis or the Communists. We are seeing in America a dehumanizing and marginalizing of targeted groups of people so that the left can blame the problems in America on them. In Germany the Jews received the majority of this treatment. It started with slander against them and then moved to legal sanction and ended up in putting them in concentration camps. Will America end up with concentration camps? I have no idea. But even falsely slandering someone to destroy their credibility is terrible. And legally sanctioning someone just for being who they are is despicable.
But we cannot forget that what the Nazis did was done in incremental steps. Had they tried to do it quickly, there would have been resistance. But by starting slowly with slurs against the Jews and creating an environment of distrust against them, they were able to incrementally move the attitude in Germany against them.
With the pro-muslim, anti-Israel attitude of this administration, we are seeing a slow buildup of anti-Jewish thought in America. And no one is standing up to stop it. For Jews elsewhere in the world looking to move to somewhere safer than where they are, America would probably only be a temporary refuge. Since the American people are not stepping up to stop the destruction of our nation, but instead are too focused on themselves, chances are our nation will not turn around, but will continue down the path we're on. That means that Jews will only be safe here for a temporary amount of time. And Christians will be in the same boat. Conservatives, regardless of religion, won't be far behind.
For Jews throughout the world seeking a safe place, Israel will be the safest for them. (I describe why I believe this as a footnote to a comment I wrote earlier. The footnote is at the end of this post.) For the rest of us, we have nowhere to run to, nowhere to hide. As I've said many times before, unless and until Americans abandon their immoral ways and turn to God, it won't matter who we elect to political office. But if we do abandon those sinful ways, then we will be able to elect true leaders who can turn America around. It's our choice. While I don't believe that Americans will, I hope I'm wrong and people make the right choice.
* I know some of you are wondering why I'd think Israel could be safer than America for Jews when it's surrounded by 100 million Muslims that are committed to its destruction. I believe God and His promises. God chose the Jews out of all the peoples of the world. He made them a nation and even though they had their ups and downs in their relationship with Him over the millennia, He made a promise to them. He promised that after all their dispersion throughout the world, that one day they would come back to their land and become a nation again. That happened in 1948. And He also promised that when they finally did come back they would never lose that land again. In fact, He promised that in the end times they will be attacked and would be saved by God stepping in miraculously to protect them. Click here to read some of the amazing things that happened just this last summer in their fight against Hamas. I believe in that promise and, therefore, I believe that Israel is the safest place for the Jews.