Friends (including Ms. Joan Rivers)
Join me today to talk about what’s going on in Israel and Gaza. Here’s why.
In her distinct subtle style, Joan Rivers opened her really big mouth a few days ago in a powerful defense of Israel’s war in Gaza . I love Joan, respect her take on this, and agree with much of what she had to say there – truly from her big heart. But I cringed when she was asked about what are the residents of Gaza to do when bombed in their homes and got nowhere to go: “I don’t care!” she screeched, and walked away.
That is not OK. Joan’s video went viral as the best support of Israel, including the lack of care and compassion for victims.
But Joan – can we talk? This isn’t stand-up. Can we get beyond the slogans and take responsibility for our humanity – CAN WE PLEASE CARE ABOUT THOSE WHO ARE TRAPPED IN THIS BLOOD BATH – ON ALL SIDES? I AM TALKING ABOUT CHILDREN, ELDERS, FAMILIES THAT FOUND THEMSELVES IN A TERRIBLE REALITY, AND OFTEN AGAINST THEIR WILL. NOT HAMAS – HUMANS.
The type of hostile lack of care for others was replied to by statements of Penelope Cruz and others that Israel is guilty of genocide. In this round – the extreme voices are on the rise, on all sides. Online culture is not helping to find a balanced middle ground that will help create solutions, not more hate.
I saw this first hand at Monday’s STAND WITH ISRAEL rally in front of the UN, where the signs that were carried by my friends and I were shredded, ridiculed and denounced, just as we who carried them became the targets of incredible abuse. The signs called for ‘No More Dead’, and for ‘Standing with Israel – Mourning with Gaza.’
Can we talk? At least Joan gave us this perfect invitation for what is needed now more than ever: honest, level headed, heartfelt conversations about how we feel, what we can do about the situation, and how we can handle the complexity of love of family and country, commitment to humane and humanistic values, and the ability to somehow handle all. Not when the fire has ceased – right now.
Join me today for another hour long conversation, in person in NYC and on the phone.
We will take a moment of silence together for all who have fallen and died, send healing prayers to all wounded and share hopes for and end to this round of rage. We will have safe space to think and feel out loud – not fight, but listen to each other and figure out how to stand with our family at this terrible time- and not lose sight of compassion, care and co-existence. We can handle the complex and/both – together.
Joan – you are invited. We love you big time, still, and always.
Join us TODAY, July 30th, from 6-7pm for another one hour conversation and conference call led by Amichai – This is not about facts – this is about feelings for how to cope, how to hope, and what we can do to make things easier for us and all.
This conversation will happen LIVE in our office in NYC and also made available as a free conference call.
ADDRESS: Makom Hadash,
125 Maiden Lane, NYC, Suite 8B
FREE PHONE CONFERENCE CALL:
July 23 2014, 12noon-1pm EST
Please email your RSVP or any questions to Molly.
Can’t join the call? We will be recording the conference. You can listen to last week’s and tomorrow’s calls on our website.
Read more: Amichai’s blogpost on his experience at the UJA Federation’s Israel Rally this past Monday.