Anonymous: For Jews, Wisdom has Always been Central

I was initially asked to write a long piece for the Student reflecting on this event as a Jew. I encouraged Bates Hillel to submit individual reflections. For me, representing the Jewish experience at Bates through a singular lens feeds into the harmful concept of Semitic-sameness. In our faith and culture, dissent is valued above accord. If you know me, you’ll know that that’s what I love the most about my faith.

Wisdom has always been central to my relationship with Judaism. Three-hour dinner debates were the norm in my household. Nightly we’d discuss everything from public policy to Friday Night Lights. This wisdom included an acknowledgment of my family’s immense privilege. I have been lucky to avoid facing the antisemitism that my ancestors have fought against, and I have fully embraced the understanding that I hold both white privilege and economic privilege. I am afraid in the wake of this shooting of being too afraid AND of not being afraid enough. I must walk through this world with the weight of intersecting privilege and marginalization as we all should.

Being an American under this administration means acknowledging the multitudes of affinity groups under attack, and working to end all forms of bias and discrimination in this country. I own my great people’s history of suffering and strength, and I pledge to work towards a peaceful future for all people, regardless of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, ability, ethnicity, or faith.