I have tried not to get involved in the dialogue because it seemed so fruitless – everyone’s opinions and emotions flying every which way but loose. There are protests in major cities all over the country. So I asked myself, “What can I add to the madness of this dialogue?” Politicians, news and media personalities have made their presence known, mouthing off every chance they get. Now, to make it worse, I am going to add my two-cents’ worth. Will the madness ever end?
It is pretty obvious to most rational people, that the looting and race-baiting is the wrong response and adds nothing to the situation. I have heard all the arguments. I have watched all of the riots. The carnage brought to their communities is nothing less than a crime in itself.
There are many who want to compare the recent events to the Civil Rights movement. Many in the black community blame the entire situation on racism. Many in the white community say it has nothing to do with racism. All I see is that no one has addressed the systemic problem, which is, the breakdown of society from every angle.
No one in their right mind would deny the civil injustices enacted upon the black community throughout the history of this nation. No one could ignore the need for the Civil Rights movement during the 60s. But what is happening today is not the same as the Civil Rights movement. Civil disobedience is needed in some situations to bring attention to unjust social circumstances. But…rioting, looting, violence, and burning down community businesses is not a legitimate response. All this does is to perpetuate the perceived stereo-typical behavior.
There have been many people groups in the history of the world that have been oppressed and treated unfairly. The Jews were slaves as far back as Egypt. We have been persecuted and murdered throughout the world for millennia. In the entire struggle throughout our history, we do not see that the Jews, as a people group, have ever received or asked for reparations or entitlements. History does not record a time when the Jews rioted and looted our own communities in protest against unfair treatment. That kind of behavior smacks of insanity.
As a child I experienced prejudicial treatment from Catholics and black people for being Jewish. I was called a “Christ killer” and much worse. I have been beaten up a number of times for being Jewish. Does that make every Catholic or black person suspect? Should I have rioted or started looting because of the unfair behavior I received?
Has anyone looked at world events lately? Jewish people are being killed and violated all over the world. Campuses protest Israel. Major “Christian” denominations have divested from Israel. Muslim countries swear that they will wipe the Jews from the face of the earth. Synagogues are being bombed. Jews are stabbed in their own places of worship. They are oppressed by the world and then accused of being the oppressor when they defend themselves. Where is the outrage? Why aren’t my people protesting, shutting down highways, looting stores and throwing stones at the police. It might be because we are too busy trying to survive and prosper as a people group. Hey, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. If this behavior is acceptable at all, then it should also be acceptable for every oppressed people group. After all, the Jews are truly a minority in every sense of the word. According to Wikipedia, the world's core Jewish population in early 2018 was estimated at 14.6 million people (around 0.2% of the world population).
During the Civil Rights movement of the 60s, when the black community finally made the decision to fight against the injustices enacted against them, they did it with dignity. They fought systematically using wisdom and restraint. They were an example to the whole world. The kind of behavior that has been exhibited in modern times by these rioters has been atrocious. It has been stated that the greatest revenge is your success. This is a message that needs to be preached to every black youth. Instead of rioting and protesting, maybe they could invest all of this energy into programs for the re-education of the next generation and building up families. It would be so much more constructive if they spent their time redeeming their youth and rescuing them from this ghetto culture which has done nothing but destroy an entire generation of our black youth. I say get your revenge against those who you say have oppressed you and succeed. Stop blaming the world for your problems and rise to the task of creating a successful community. Who cares what others say or think about you? We Jews certainly don’t.
One of the reasons there has been such a disparity in our black neighborhoods is because of the destruction of the family. Over 70% of all black children are born out of wedlock. According to CNN anchor Don Lemon (a black commentator) "Black people," Lemon said, "if you really want to fix the problem, there are just five things that you should think about doing."
The No. 1 item on that list -- "and probably the most important," he said -- had to do with out-of-wedlock births.
It makes no difference what you think, the destruction of the community happens when the family structure breaks down. This can be clearly seen. The family is the backbone of society. When the family structure breaks down, society breaks down.
As a result of this breakdown the father figure, who leads his children in teaching his sons how to be a strong honorable man, is absent. Daughters do not have a healthy example of what a faithful man should look like; therefore, they fall prey to men who are nothing more than exploiters and thugs.
Ghetto culture is not an accurate example of black culture. Ghetto culture is an example of the family breakdown, abandonment of responsibility, and abdication of a segment of our society to fulfill their responsibility to raise up the next generation ready to handle life.
I have been in ministry for 40 years. In this short time I spent a lot of it working in some of the worst Ghettos in the country in Chicago, New York, Boston and other major cities. I have been doing prison ministry for the last 10 years. We feed the homeless every week and have done this for almost 20 years now. I have seen the breakdown of society 1st hand. I have spent many days with young men in the Ghettos trying to be a father figure to a fatherless generation. I speak with first-hand experiential knowledge of this situation.
If people want change in society, it will not happen until Godly men rise up and do their job to raise up the next generation. I pray it is not too late.
Scripture states it best.
Prov. 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Deu 6:5-7 “Love the Lord your Elohim with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.”
The real issue we are dealing with, in regards to this riotous behavior, is that simple Biblical precepts that used to be a major part of black identity have been totally abandoned. Families were strong then. There used to be a time when the black community embraced that identity. They celebrated it in the “Negro” spirituals. The majority of these hymns identified with Israel and their oppression. What you did not see, however, was a black community asking for entitlements or expecting a handout. Their determination to pick themselves up and move beyond their oppression was admirable, and it was the formula that finally led to the Civil Rights movement of the 60s.
It is about time that the black man has his revenge against the years of oppression that has befallen them. Let them rise to their success, just like every other oppressed people group, and find revenge through their success. Man’s injustice against man has been and continues to be felt in society.
The one thing I do know, however; as long as some act like animals pouncing upon road kill, they will continue to perpetuate the stereo-typical perceptions.
Pro 14:34 Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.
Shalom uvracha b”Yeshua (Peace and blessings in Yeshua) the real Prince of Peace.