Anti-Semitism Is Alive And Well
Congratulations to Maayan Jaffe on her editorial on anti-Semitism (“Anti-Semitism is Alive And Well,” Nov. 22). Growing up in 21208 or 21209, or even 21217, or upper Park Heights or lower Park Heights or
Forest Park can be very blinding and narrow. And suddenly the real world hits one when it is time to go to college. Wow, there are people other than Jews. And, for the first time in one’s life, the terror of anti-Semitism is there. It can be very subtle, but it is there. What about the anti-Semitism of Jew against Jew, because one’s skirt is too long or too short or one’s arms are exposed or one’s black hat is different from another? And what about the Jew who is anti-Semitic against another who is not as religious and not even considered a Jew? Or the non-religious Jew who believes that observant Jews are living in the past? To me, Jew against Jew is the worst form of anti-Semitism.
My husband grew up in a very small town — one of 60 Jewish families — where he learned to take the long way home from school for fear of being beaten up again. Two years ago, he was asked to talk on graduation day at that same school he attended then. He didn’t want to because “they didn’t like me then, so why should they like me now?” He was convinced by a few people to do it. However, a week before the graduation he got a snail mail telling him he was “uninvited” to talk with no explanation. My guess was that he probably was uninvited because they had him confused with another Dr. Morton, whose parents owned the only department store in town, and they accidentally asked the poor Jew who lived in the city.