Today is Thanksgiving and beyond the turkey and the parade and the sweet potatoes, what is thankfullness. To be properly thankfull for anything is to understand not only what it's like to be without it but to know that in the normal state of affairs, you would not have it. And we lack that understanding.
All too often we fail to understanding that our comfortable existance in Western countries, in which we are not discriminated against and no laws are passed against us; is an aberrant state of affairs. One that has very rarely existed and not for very long. Yet we have grown used to it. So much so that when Jews once again become tarred with classic anti-semitic stereotypes, whether it's by the religious right or the liberal left we treat it as a nuisance.
We have forgotten that the usual state of affairs was for Jews to briefly abide in a nation before being expelled from it. The Jews of the world look at what happened in Gush Katif with apathy and even us, those few who don't, see it as something remote and distant that could never happen to us. History says that such a delusion is deeply mistaken. On Pesach we are commanded to see ourselves as if we too were leaving Egypt. We might consider seeing ourselves as if we really were expelled from Gush Katif, not merely for reasons of empathy but as a wake up call to what can happen and what eventually will.
Time and time again Jews have been forced out with little more than the clothes on their backs. Time and time again waves of persecution began with the acceptance of hatefull rhetoric by a society towards the Jews. Too many Jews take comfort in the marginalization of Neo-Nazis, as if they are the only threat Jews ever faced. Look to the atmosphere on the left where in the name of a war on Zionism, rhetoric is spewed that equals Goebbels at his worst. Look to the religious right which while claiming to befriend Jews at once blames Jews for all of society's ills.
When a bomb goes off in Israel it is accepted in the media that dead Jews, whether they are citizens of Israel or America, are unfortunate but acceptable. By contrast when a wedding in Jordan was bombed, the media spilled more tears over the attack going into detail with human interest stories while as in WW2, stories on dead Jews are banished to the back pages if they are printed at all. And so the dehumanization of the Jews as people whose lives have value and right goes.
Too many Jews are deluded by the prominence of Holocaust commemoration in the west. They however fail to grasp that this is only done because Holocaust commemoration has been increasingly universalized and used as a tool by liberals and socialists to promote 'anti-racist' programs and international courts and the importance of the UN; more than a mourning for the Jewish victims. And beginning with the Soviet Union and continuing today with the left and many liberals; Jews are described as the new Nazis so that the very commemoration of the Holocaust is twisted by the left to attack the Jews.
Do you want to know what to be thankfull for? Think about what you have to lose. Think carefully and be happy for what you have now.
Nothing lasts forever. That is a lesson that Jews as the world's oldest people keep forgetting and having to learn.