As a Jewish member of our community, I was horrified to read of the anti-Semitic attacks on the houses of worship of our brethren. My heart aches for the families who pray and enjoy the freedoms of America in those temples only to be victimized by people so filled with baseless hatred.
As an Orthodox member of our community, however, my heart aches even more. The absolute silence of my Orthodox leadership is embarrassing and sad. In my home, as in many Jewish homes – Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist, and other – we teach our children to treat others as we would like to be treated ourselves. I talk to them about the urgent need for unconditional love to counter the baseless hate that fills our world. We all learn that it is a grave sin to stand idly by when a brother is under attack. Unfortunately, my own religious leadership is guilty of these sins.
May these attacks be a wake-up call to the Orthodox leadership that it is time to put politics and squabbles aside, and to start to view all Jews as Am Echad, one nation with one heart.
My deepest and most sincere wishes of consolation to my brothers and sisters.