Monday, November 19, 2007

First act of Activism

I just wanted to thank Gina from WAOD, Symphony from Essential Presence and Attorney Mom from Character Corner for showing me their strength and waking up that activist in me. I try not to sit in the sidelines as much now, but I do pick and choose my battles.

One thing that bothers me in the Jewish world is some people find it necessary to use derogatory terms when talking about other people. As if they are so good and anyone else is crud. Well there is one particular derogatory word that is used for black folks that I dislike. (please note: the majority of my experience has been quite pleasant and welcoming, so don't use this to generalize that all jews are...whatever).

Now I know I can't stop everyone who does use that word to stop, but to see it on a public forum in a website giving advice was just too much for me. And on top of that the website owner had the chutzpah to even include the N-word. Normally, I would shake my head (SMH) and never go to that site again, but the new improved Miriam decided NO WAY!!!! I wrote him an email stating my disgust. And just for good measure emailed all my other black Jewish friends to pounce on him as well.

Lo and behold I got this email back!

Here is a copy of his letter and the corrected Q&A reply:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Miriam,

First of all, I apologize for the delay in responding. I get hundreds of Spam and have a hard time finding the real emails.

Now that post you sent me below was nutty. I have no idea what my brother was thinking. I erased it immediately.
I apologize.

I've never seen it before and I can't believe he actually wrote that.

I don't know what to say. I am flabbergasted!

Your comments 1, 2 & 3 are all 100% accurate. I will speak to him and make sure this does not happen again. He lives in Lakewood and I guess he lives in some kind of a bubble.

Sorry,

XXXXXXXXX

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The new posted reply on his website concerning the word usage:

Is the usage of "shvartze" or any deragatory racial term approporiate behavior for a Torah Jew? Is using negative racial sterotypes considered halachic behavior? I'd like to hear a halachic opinion, if one exists (and your personal opinion if it differs).

Reply: We treat all people with respect. We should not be using terms that insult others. No matter what color, race or type.
AA

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