Monday, January 19, 2009

The Death of Judaism

I have become an advocate of teaching religion/philosophy in school. In raising my own boys I have been ashamed of much of what they've been exposed to in Roman Catholic churches. The message of the New Testament is used to sugar-coat generations of bad theology.

I read a New York Times article recently about the Wall Street scam artist Bernie Madoff who bilked billionaires of their fortunes. The most disturbing thing about the article was the same post-modern hodge-podge of pseudo-Judaic belief and practice Christianity suffers from. Heaven, hell, destiny, free-will, money, chosen people, ethics, faith and more all get thrown into the cultural blender to produce quaint television sit-com prognostications.

The garbled, absolutist drivel that is spewed forth has little or nothing to do with the study or reverence of God, it's just god-noise to make a buck and justify the means.

This past week, a story caught my attention that deserves this country's attention.

The story is about a doctor in Gaza who witnessed his daughters being killed. Gaza by the kindest of definitions is a concentration camp that the world has no righteous indignation about. Nobody who believes in the right to life cries out when children are herded into building for "safety" and then shelled to death. Real children rarely count in today's religious vernacular.

The excuses for these behaviors are tried and true and there will be no accountability. The Torah, the basis for Western law, might be a source of wisdom in times like these. But its too late. Judaism itself seems to be buried in the rubble of the Gaza disgrace.

And the disgrace is on everyone's head. There is no excuse for what goes on there by any party (and there are more than two). The perpetual killing sprees and blood feuds are sub-human exercises. War used to have an honor to it. Today, the Powell Doctrine is taken to the extreme. The use of overwhelming technological force on populations that can barely feed themselves and are being slowly strangle dto death should not be considered inspired tactical genius. This is the stuff of humanity that has abandoned rather than embraced religion, it is the mark of a beast and not a civilized man.

The agony of this doctor for his murdered children should summon some kind of moral indignation in anyone theist or atheist who can still think and connect the information with a sensibility that values both human life and the dependency of children on the behavior of the adults in charge.

War is no excuse for inhumanity.



Schools need to somehow dust off the lessons about the sanctity of human life if we are to survive. The next generation needs to get off this treadmill of hatred, barbarism, and self-immolation.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

seriously, read a book. the comparison to a concentration camp is extremely offensive.

The Caretaker said...

I am having a hard time responding to your comment. of all the things worth being offended by you choose to express offense in a cryptic way.

Are you offended that my words aren't strong enough?

This link provides a compare and contrast metric for the analogy: http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?pg=11&ar=2510

Are you offended that my analogy is incorrect? In this link Noam Chomsky explains the situation in vivid detail: http://www.chomsky.info/articles/20090119.htm

Of course, if the lives of anyone you don't care about are inconsequential and then you should be celebrating. Whichever side you choose has declared victory and are overjoyed regardless of the toll in children's lives.

Cartoons (click to site of ownership):