For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
As news stories accumulate discussing the danger of being Jewish at Left-leaning American colleges, perhaps we should consider the Left on Israel’s campuses.
The academic Left is a small but potentially powerful force in Israel. It is they who lead the Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement here; they celebrate international condemnation of Israel; and they promote an openly anti-Israel agenda.
By definition, this group is articulate. They are some of the best educated among us, and some are the most honored educators we have. Our college-age children—impressionable and eager to please those who control their grades—are attracted to them like iron particles to a magnet. Whatever kool-aid they offer, our children drink.
The academic Left seem to enjoy almost unlimited freedom. To a large extent, they do as they please. They create rules which few dare question. If you have gone to an Israeli college, you understand the power they exert over our children.
If you have gone to a faculty gathering, you also understand that academe is not a world of equals. In fact, there is no equality. Instead, there is an unequal class structure: the tenured professor; the tenure-seeking professor; the non-tenure-track teacher; the part-time teacher; and the graduate assistant. As with all class-based societies, everyone here has his place and everyone knows his place.
The elite are the tenured. They live with the freedom and the arrogance that come to those called ‘first –class.’
The anti-Israel academic Left is populated, primarily, by two groups, the tenured elite and the untenured wannabees, some of whom will get their tenure because they sing the right songs.
Today, those ‘right’ songs are about creating another state for Arabs—at Israel’s expense. The songs are about ‘social justice’ and ‘equality’. According to this political gospel, the rights of the Arab supercede the rights of the Jew, capitalism is poisonous, and religion is fascism. Our children worship at their feet.
But there is a troubling problem here, because both the call of Academic Left—and the Academic Left itself—is built on hypocrisy.
Haven’t you noticed? While Leftist academics celebrate equality, they themselves benefit from an elitist world that is fundamentally unequal, a world that favors the chosen—the tenured—above all others. While they promote equality and justice through the power of the government over the individual, they demand for themselves the kind of individual freedom you can only find in an unequal world.
Perhaps it is hypocrisy that makes the call of the Academic Left seem so dangerous—the promotion of ‘equality’ and ‘justice’ as the cure for what ails us; for if you do not admit that the world you love rejects the world you promote, can you really admit that the causes you support are toxic?
To understand this question, consider a recent Jonathan Rosenblum essay about America (and Israel): it is not equality that made America wealthy, he argues, but freedom—specifically, the freedom to pursue one’s own economic dream. Equality did not make America great; enhanced freedom did. Interestingly, this is exactly what the tenured academic Left has—almost unlimited freedom; but freedom is exactly what the academic Left rejects for others.
If your children wish a proper grade, they must think the ‘proper’ (anti-Israel) way; the same is often true for those who seek tenure. That is not freedom.
As Rosenblum points out, it is the emphasis of freedom over equality that has made Israel and America number one and two in the world (in that order) for ‘per capita rate of business formation’, which lies at the foundation of successful national wealth; but the academic Left has chosen to sell the reverse--equality over freedom. Our children drink every word.
A case might be made that the value that promotes the most freedom for the most citizens is exactly this value: the belief in individual freedom to create personal wealth. Arab nations seem to have no clue about this—and, you’ll notice, they have few freedoms. It may be no accident that America has such a high rate of business formations; but it is both astounding and predictive that Israel is number one in the world in that category—it astounds because Israel is so small and so restrained by intense security needs, and it is predictive because, based on America’s experience, Israel’s future wealth potential is enormous.
But the academic Left rejects this. Living with unprecedented freedom-- and inequality-- they prefer to seduce our children with songs of an equality and a social conformity their own lifestyle rejects. They promote false gods—and our children worship them.
Certainly, not all academics are Leftists--and not all of our children drink the kool-aid. We should remember that. But as the academic Left sells its false gods to our children, shouldn’t we worry about our children?
Read your Tanach. Do your children understand the consequences of worshipping false gods?
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I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"