Israel News | Zionism Israel Center | Zionism History | Zionism Definitions | ZioNation | Forum | Zionism FAQ | Maps| Edit

Friday, June 22, 2007

Israel pride parade

The gay pride parade in Jerusalem turned into an Israeli pride parade. Israel is the only country in the Middle East where this parade could be held. Queers for Palestine should consider what would happen if they held such a parade in Gaza City.
Ami Isseroff
By Bradley Burston

JERUSALEM - I'm proud of the State of Israel. It may have more faults per capita than any nation in the world, faults which are duly broadcast, rerun, critiqued, and condemned as nowhere else. It may have more critics per capita than anywhere else in the world, in particular among its majority population of restive, instinctively kvetching, eternally disappointed Jews.
I know every criticism by heart. I'll see your every damning denunciation, and raise you 10. But I am proud of this country, and the gay pride parade in Jerusalem goes a long way toward explaining why.
I am proud of a country which - under the burden of a 24/7 threat of Islamic Jihad terrorism, under a daily Hamas barrage of Qassam missiles on a small town in the Negev, under an explicit Iranian threat of erasure in the future and client militia brushfire wars in the near present - deploys 8,000 police, nearly half of its entire active-duty force, to protect a parade in Jerusalem by a minority group that is routinely denigrated by many members of two of the holy city's largest and most vocal communities: the ultra-Orthodox and the Palestinians.
I am proud of the gay community, which made strenuous efforts to assure that the parade would be held in areas far from the ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods and other areas where the march would serve to offend residents.
I am proud of the police for standing up to yeshiva students who, screaming "Nazis! Nazis! Nazis!" at the officers, pelted them with rocks, bottles, angle iron and Molotov cocktails, all the while breaking windows, smashing streetlights, and setting fire to tires and garbage dumpsters.
I am proud of ultra-Orthodox rabbis and yeshiva masters, who, though appalled by the parade and what they see as the abomination of homosexuality, publicly and unequivocally forbade their students from taking part in violent demonstrations.
I am proud of a country that scorns the slimy Meir Kahane disciple Itamar Ben-Gvir when he screams at gay celebrants in a Tel Aviv parade "the Nazis should have finished you off."
I am proud of the policeman on King David Street who, when asked by a passing pre-schooler about the flag with the rainbow colors, replied, "There are boys who love boys, and girls who love girls."
I am proud of a country in which the army's influential radio station airs the views of the daughter of the prime minister when she states that the right of gays and lesbians to march in their capital city is as inherent as their right to vote.
Just as I am proud of Israel's last Eurovision song contest winner, an acclaimed diva who began life as a man, who told a television interviewer why she believed that in the interest of respect for the holy city, the parade should not be held there.
And I am proud, as well, of the fact that Israel Television gave air time to a rabbi to explain his strong opposition to the march, and to the woman anchor who, asked by the rabbi what she would do if her son told her she was gay, said that she would hold him and be grateful for his openness.
There are many who argue that a Jewish country cannot countenance a public celebration of homosexuality. It is time for them to take the advice of leading rabbis, who placed this announcement in the Lithuanian Haredi newspaper, as quoted by the Jerusalem Post:
"Demonstrating should be done by each person in his place [by feeling outrage in the soul, by praying and beseeching (God) against the loathsome blasphemy]."
All of us who live here have our personal list of obscenities, perversions and abominations, as committed by our fellow Jewish residents of Israel. We may find their actions politically abhorrent, culturally unbearable, spiritually bankrupt, personally offensive.
They are a big part of the price of living in this country, riven along fault lines dividing and enraging left and right, secular and religious, Mizrachi and Ashkenazi, sabra and immigrant.
It may be the built-in flaw of a Jewish homeland, this infighting among the Jews it has brought home.
But as the gay pride parade proves, the most profound strength of a Jewish country are those Jews who strive to learn to live with the Jews with whom they so profoundly differ.
We're here. By definition, we are all of us, each in our own ways, queer. We should, all of us for our own reasons, be proud.

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors. Originally posted at Please do link to these articles, quote from them and forward them by email to friends with this notice. Other uses require written permission of the author.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Subscribe to
email newsletter for this site and others

Powered by

Feedblitz subcription
To this Blog only

You can receive our articles by e-mail. For a free subscription, please enter your e-mail address:

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz

Web Logs & Sites

This Site

Zionism & Israel
Zionation Web Log
IMO Web Log (Dutch)

ZI Group
Zionism-Israel Pages
Israël-Palestina.Info (Dutch & English)
Israƫl in de Media
MidEastWeb Middle East News and Views
MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log

Brave Zionism
Israel: Like this, as if
Israel & Palestijnen Nieuws Blog

Friends and Partners
EinNews Israel
Israel Facts
Israel Proud Adam Holland
Middle East Analysis
Irene Lancaster's Diary
Middle East Analysis
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Israel Facts (NL)
Cynthia's Israel Adventure
Jeff Weintraub Commentaries and controversies
Meretz USA Weblog
Pro-Israel Bay Bloggers
Simply Jews
Fresno Zionism
Anti-Racist Blog
Sharona's Week
Z-Word Blog
Jewish State
Take A Pen - Israel Advocacy
Zionism on the Web
ZOTW's Zionism and Israel News
Zionism On The Web News
ZOTW's Blogs
Christian Attitudes
Dr Ginosar Recalls
Questions: Zionism anti-Zionism Israel & Palestine
Southern Wolf
Peace With Realism
Sanda's Place
Liberal for Israel
Realistic Dove
Blue Truth
Point of no Return
Christians Standing With Israel
Christians Standing With Israel - Blog

Encylopedic Dictionary of Zionism and Israel
Middle East Encyclopedia
Zionism and its Impact
Zionism & the creation of Israel
Zionism - Issues & answers
Maps of Israel
Christian Zionism Resources
Christian Zionism
Albert Einstein
Gaza & the Qassam Victims of Sderot
Zionist Quotes
Six Day War
Jew Hatred
Learn Hebrew
Arab-Israeli Conflict
International Zionism

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Israel Boycott
Boycott Israel?
Amnesty International Report on Gaza War
Boycott Israel?
Dutch Newspaper Reporting: A Study of NRC Handelsblad
Hamas (Dutch)
Dries van Agt (Dutch)
Isfake lobby

At Zionism On the Web
Articles on Zionism
Anti-Zionism Information Center
Academic boycott of Israel Resource Center
The anti-Israel Hackers
Antisemitism Information Center
Zionism Israel and Apartheid
Middle East, Peace and War
The Palestine state
ZOTW Expert Search
ZOTW Forum

Judaica & Israel Gifts
Jewish Gifts: Judaica:
Ahava Products

Powered by Blogger

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]

RSS V 1.0

International Affairs Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory