‘We are Klal Yisrael’

‘We are Klal Yisrael’

The Jewish community is sick. We, all of us, have been attacked on the basis of one thing – our religion. They, the attackers, the anti-Semites, do not distinguish between charedim, chassidim, datim, Satmar, Orthodox, traditional, conservadox, Conservative, Reconstructionist, Reform, Renewal, or even secular Jews. To them, we are all one.

But here we are, with modern schools of Shammai and Hillel pitted against one another, growling like dogs over who gets the rotten piece left over by the scavengers. Of course, today, Jews follow the traditions of our blessed sage Hillel, who elucidated the Golden Rule, “That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole Torah; the rest is the explanation; go and learn.” This rule emanates from Parashah Kedoshim, which states, “Love thy neighbor as thyself” (Leviticus 19:18). What would Hillel tell us today? Would that we could all follow his rule today. It has served us well for 2,000 years. Perhaps we need another lesson to re-learn it.

To my Orthodox brethren, I commiserate with you over desecrations perpetuated in Paramus, Highland Park, and now Rutherford. I invite you to demonstrate solidarity with all branches of Judaism. We are Klal Yisrael. We cannot afford to be divided.