Popular Articles

We sacrifice lives for what we believe in, and do it better than the best of them.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

We should celebrate that the Jewish people have survived, thrived, and multiplied (Photo: Israeliamerican.org)

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Yes, I know, my Bride keeps telling me the same thing. It’s as plain as the nose on your face. Stop talking about Jews. The Gentiles don’t like it when you keep making those invidious comparisons. Out of all proportion to their numbers, you say!

Wherever they treated us like dirt, we offered paths to better lives and greater hope. Look what Israel did, this tiny country taking on the biggest and strongest and beating the pants off them! The science and soldiers, the pandemic and the anti-missiles, talking about it will make the Gentiles hate us even more, if that’s possible. How come we don’t just go away?

I can’t help it! It is just the truth. Can’t we just admit it among ourselves, talk about it, take pride in it, kvell? We won’t just go away because we are too good to be true. This magic in our make-up, this DNA distilled from all the horrors that men can visit on other men, cannot be stifled. It remains too concentrated in the bodies of the remnant of Hebrews that have survived.

We know from Josephus that Jews made up ten percent of the population of the Roman Empire nearly two millennia ago. We were ten million even after the slaughter of more than a million by the Roman Legions when Jerusalem was razed. And many more were slaughtered during the Bar Kochba revolt many years later. (What would normal increase have brought that number to, in the present day?) The Romans devoted twelve Legions to stamp out the Hebrew’s revolt, even while it took only two legions to subdue the Brits. Even in this we excelled.

We sacrifice lives for what we believe in, and do it better than the best of them. Yet, there we were a generation later one-tenth of the Empire’s population. How many were followers of the Jewish Jesus, whose ideas swept away millennia of Paganism?

I do not aspire to the scholarship that might document what was inherent in the DNA of this group of emigres from Egyptian slavery. I know that they produced the ideas that patterned the better elements of the kind of world we have inherited.

Greek philosophy and science are integral to many of the gifts we treasure today. But how is it that so many of the protagonists using this heritage for human betterment over the centuries can be identified as descendants of the Hebrews? In every field of human endeavor this group is over-represented. We have even bred master criminals.

And may I say it and shouldn’t, although not concentrated as it is among current day Jews, that DNA is out there in the general population as a consequence of the assimilation of Jews into the general population over the last two hundred years, if not before.

Get thej.ca a Pro Israel Voice by Email. Never miss a top story that effects you, your family & your community

I will not attempt to document with chapter and verse the contributions that individual Jews have made in advancing the state of the human condition. In commerce and science, in government and in politics, (Karl Marx and Leon Trotsky, and Mendes-France, French President and Haym Salomon who helped finance the U.S. revolution,) the names are well-known. Our record among the Nobel prize-winners is an historical fact.

Our record in the making of American business, industry, and entertainment, is less well known, somewhat hidden by name-changes.

Should we mention Bob Dylan that nearly every Jew knows about, but how about Elvis Presley and Andrew Lloyd Webber? The names of Jews on Broadway, in television, in music, and in retail is more than numerous. The story of the internet is amazing, and beggars description. Balmer at Microsoft, Zuckerberg at Facebook, Brin and Page at Alphabet and Google, Ellison at Oracle, Dell at Dell Technology, Grove at Intel, Lerner at Cisco, Viterbi at QUALCOMM, almost like it was a Jewish enterprise. The same was true in Hollywood and on Broadway, in Television, and in early American retail.

What is it in the genes? What is it in the culture? Since the advent of state Christianity in the western world, Jews were cut off from the mainstream. Under Islam, Jews were tolerated, but survival was a challenge under the sway of a militant Christian Church. Some have speculated that a survival of the fittest selection occurred where the best and the brightest survived to preserve the DNA.

But that does not explain a continuing emphasis among Jews on activities which foster education, learning, and the community interest. Genes alone don’t explain a focus on activities that foster the preservation of life and the pursuit of justice. (Doctors and lawyers, anyone?) It does not explain how philanthropy is such a feature of Jewish community life. That has to be related to the ethic that all Jews face a common destiny. 

Woodcut carved by Johann von Armssheim (1483). Portrays a disputation between Christian and Jewish scholars (Photo: Wikipedia)

What affects one Jew, we recognize, ultimately affects all Jews. We learned that lesson well in the diaspora.

But even in ancient Israel, no community was considered complete if it did not have provision for educating the young, and a body with responsibility for ensuring the welfare of the poor.

As in ancient Israel, in Jewish communities, it was always understood that equal justice was to be rendered without regard to position or wealth. In the diaspora Jewish community, justice was rendered, not by a representative of temporal power, but by the Rabbi. The moral authority was supreme, as it was in ancient Israel. The Sanhedrin had authority over the sovereign.

What Jews have to offer the societies which freely allow them to make the contributions they are capable of, are the gifts with which their life experience has equipped them.

 And I have not mentioned that wonder of wonders, the “start-up” nation of Israel and its contributions, current and potential, to the people of the world. I believe all societies can benefit immeasurably.

As a Jew, I am proud of what we have to offer, and I want to celebrate it.

Max Roytenberg is an author, poet and blogger, with many published articles in Jewish periodicals in Dublin, New York, Winnipeg and Vancouver. After a career as an Economist and Executive in the Food Industry, in Canada and abroad, he writes, and lives with his Bride, in Vancouver. He has children and grandchildren in the US, Canada, China and Israel. His last book, “Hero In My Own Eyes”, is available through major booksellers and on Amazon.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Share on print

Click an icon above to share, email, or save this article

Read More

Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

We thank you for your ongoing support.

Happy reading!

Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

We thank you for your ongoing support.

Happy reading!

cOMING SOON…….

Breaking News

Recent

Features

News

Current Events

Opinions

Politics

Religion

Culture

Memoriam and Obituaries

PodcastS

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Subscribe Now

Receive the latest in community & international Jewish news direct to your inbox

Terms and Conditions

Privacy Policy

About Us

Advertise with us

contact 

© 2020 THEJ.CA, All Rights Reserved

Previous
Next