The recent hostilities between Israel and Palestine were horrifying. People being killed, property destroyed, and divisions that already exist, exacerbated. While the world watched, we heard comments from politicians, justifying their positions and condemning the other side. It appeared, from reporting, that we should choose a side — about who to blame.

There have been demonstrations and marches around the world, supporting both sides. What seems incongruous is that when individuals complain about the state of Israel, they have often been labeled as anti-Semitic. Conversely, criticizing the Palestinians is anti-Muslim. Complaining about a government’s policies and actions, does not mean you are anti citizens of that state. If that were true, then when someone complains about America, that would mean they are anti-American.

The ability to be critical of governance is inherent in the American experience; it is part of our DNA. As President Teddy Roosevelt said, “To announce that there must be no criticism of the president [or our government] is morally treasonable to the American public.”

While a cease fire currently exists, the reasons for hostilities are still present. Both sides can be criticized about their polices and actions, until the root problems are addressed. To be clear, hate speech — from any side — is not acceptable.

If we ever stopped questioning our government’s policies, I would be concerned.

(2) comments


It goes without saying that this is a tragedy as the citizens of Gaza are caught in the middle. Conversely in Israel, the air raid sirens instruct the Israelis to take cover or seek their bomb shelter as thousands of projectiles, rain down. The absurd pundits of the press, frame this as David vs. Goliath which is naïve at best. This is Iran (Hamas) vs Israel. Watching various news networks, the thinking seems to be that the Israel should lay down because they have the Iron Dome and bomb shelters to protect their citizenry. What has Hamas done to protect their people, or do they see their citizens as inconsequential in their quest to annihilate Israel ? During the gulf war, Israel stood down as Iraq launched scud missiles. Enough is enough! In a Machiavellian manner, the Iranian regime, backers of Hamas, is taking notes on how this plays out for a war in the future that will be even more costly in human lives. This time, the proxy they will use is Hezbollah in the north, an even deadlier force that will make this tragedy look like Childs play.


The trend in public opinion that hurts the most for me is the comparison of the plight of the Palestinians to the plight of African Americans. African Americans are not led by terrorists and don't shoot thousands of rockets at America. They also don't generally challenge America's right to exist.

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