Friday, February 17, 2017

The Rabbi Is Unafraid

Rob Eshman is proud of his wife, Rabbi Naomi Levi. He is especially proud of her for standing up in front of her congregation and announcing that she is not afraid of Muslims: Bring ‘em on! Eschman is not alone in feeling proud of hit rabbi wife. Her congregation cheered her loudly for her enlightened and anti-Trumpian attitude.

By now, you are wondering what Lulu thinks about all this virtue signaling. Or else, you are wondering who Lulu is. For all I know Lulu might be a pseudonym. Apparently, she prefers not to reveal her last name. The Bookworm blog (via Maggie’s Farm) has posted her remarks, beginning with the results of her research—conducted after 9/11—into Muslim culture around the world.

Lulu went to YouTube and found the Memri site:

I saw television clips of preachers giving lessons on the proper techniques of wife beating. I saw discussions and sermons promoting the murder of apostates and infidels (that is, non-Muslims). I saw the basest of anti-Semitism, including blood libels, promulgated. I watched young Palestinian children on kiddie shows being encouraged to become suicide martyrs and murder Jews. I saw the defense of honor killings, female genital mutilation and support for the denial of rights for women as normative and right.

We all know how the Internet works. One link leads to another. I then saw articles about the pedophilia in Afghanistan, the kidnapped young boys forced to dance for men and perform sexually for them. I saw articles about young female children, under the age of ten sometimes, married to grown men or middle aged men who raped them. I read about young wives locked in their homes, so miserable and desperate to end their suffering that they literally set themselves on fire as their only means to escape. Picture after picture reveals the horror. I read about Christians burned, beaten, and stoned to death, their daughters kidnapped and forced to serve as sex slaves. I read about young couples who dared to fall in love dragged out of prison (jailed for being together) and beaten to death by lynch mobs. I read and saw pictures of gays tossed off buildings and hung in public squares. I read about the horrible mistreatment of animals; beasts of burden, dogs, bear baiting.

Yes, indeed. Now we know what has been missing in America. Nothing to be afraid of there. For reasons that escape me, the debate about the Trump immigration order has completely ignored the results of Muslim migration in Europe. To be fair, to myself, I have often posted the best information about it on this blog.

Lulu summarizes the results of her research:

So I have watched with horror and dismay as Sweden, perhaps the most self-congratulatory nation on the planet, in a noble experiment and to atone for Swedes’ blond hair and fair complexions, took in an enormous number of people, primarily young men, from these precise cultures . . . expecting what to happen, exactly? Beautiful integration? Sexually outré Swedish metrosexuals sipping coffee with people who viewed them with contempt? No, the Swedes embraced their immigrants with wide open arms and assumed they’d be reciprocated with gratitude and worldwide accolades. Instead, Sweden has become known as the rape capital of Europe. Values collide. Just a few weeks ago, a group of Afghan asylum recipients filmed themselves on Facebook-live gang raping a young Swedish woman. Tack sa mycket, Sverige!

As you know, France has a very large Muslim population and thus a very large Muslim problem. Try being Jewish in Paris these days. Lulu has French Jewish friends. Their lives are not something that Rabbi Levi or her congregation would wish for:

And speaking of Jews, we have Jewish friends from France who can no longer walk to synagogue wearing a kippah or a star of David necklace, lest they be beaten up or worse. The couple, highly talented professionals both, have been trying to immigrate to the United States for years but have been unable to do so legally, tied up in red tape and complications. So they are stuck in France where they feel they have no future. There are no-go neighborhoods throughout France, especially in Paris, where sharia law holds sway. The police are even afraid to enter. This is where the French Jew, Ilan Halimi, was taken to when he was kidnapped and tortured to death. His torturers ritually chanted from the Koran on the telephone while his mother heard his screams.

Rabbi Levi and her husband are involved in the narcissistic exercise called virtue-signaling. It makes you feel good about your own virtue while you blissfully ignore reality. You are saying that since you are virtuous, without an Islamophobic bone in your body, you will not be punished by the armies of Allah.

Lulu responds:

It somehow doesn’t occur to the virtue-huggers that, as the number of Muslim immigrants rise, Muslims become more powerful, thus affecting school curriculum, politics, and so on. Things change. Look at anti-Jewish harassment at universities. The virtue signaling of today can become something much more frightening and less pleasant tomorrow.

She adds:

Rob Eshman is super proud of his wife and wants to be proud of the rest of us too. Well, I’m afraid he will be disappointed in me because I think he, his wife, and their congregation, lovely people though they may be, are fools whose naiveté will ultimately cost lives. They are fools who comfortably live far from the poor communities where the Somalis and Syrians will be resettled. It is armchair virtuousness. You know, I’d like to see them promote the immigration of Yazidi or Christian refugees, who are in grave danger and pose no terror risk, but they don’t.

Lulu, however, is afraid:

Unlike Rabbi Levy, I am afraid of what far too many people do, have done and will do in the name of Islam. I am afraid of values totally discordant with my own, of taqquiya and sharia and the broad partial, or whole-hearted, support of killing of gays, Jews and Christians, suppression of women and the fundamentally anti-democratic impulses of a huge percentage of the world’s Muslims. More than half of British Muslims, for example, want homosexuality illegal and a quarter fully support the imposition of sharia law in their new homes. The numbers are much larger elsewhere. 

She concludes:

Rabbi Levy, et al, what say you to the honor killings on our soil, or to the little girl whose genitals have been hacked out (something prevalent now in France), or to the next victims of a terror attack, whether a car ramming, a stabbing spree, a shooting or a bombing, here in the US? That this is a small price to pay for being unlike Trump? Rapists, not racists? With great virtue signaling comes great responsibility. If among the people you insist on coming are those who hate the US, the West, and you, and perpetrate any of these heinous acts, you will not be virtuous. You will have blood on your hands.


trigger warning said...

Lulu is a sad victim of fact and logic, actually listening to people describe themselves rather than attributing to them attitudes and ethics derived from The Narrative.

Having said that, I can heartily recommend a visit to to get a sense of the barbarism and venomous hatred emanating from the Islamic world.

If Donald Trump accomplishes nothing else during his tenure, his rejection of the Two-State "Solution" (in Arabic: Final Solution) is reward enough for me.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

For all their talk of worldliness and sophistication, and condemnation of the "small-mindedness" of their fellow citizens, Western liberals and Lefties are astonishingly ignorant of the awesome power of culture.

We are not all the same. Indeed, in the U.S., we spend most of our school time telling children that they are all unique and special. But it stops there. We do not share one human family beyond the genetics that forms the basis of our species. We have families, tribes, communities and nations. We are not simple bumbling sacks of protoplasm with mysterious DNA running our lives. We are social beings. Social formation and the permissions, restrictions, protocols and workings of society have great impact on what we hold as right and wrong, possible and impossible, etc. The idea that all cultures are the same is self-evidently preposterous. Different cultures produce different outcomes.

This is lost on our "betters" and "the brights." Not only that, but they are willfully ignorant in their virtue-signaling statements, while morosely consumed in their willful suspension of disbelief about how neanderthal the "small-minded" among them are. The problem is always someone else, the problem is always "out there."

I call this conceit the self-congratulation of the morally magnificent. When you ignore reality to suit The Narrative, you do so at your peril. To say you get what you deserve is a step too far for me. However, ideas definitely have consequences. Willful blindness to those consequences is not a defense.

This mass refugee influx from the Middle East is insane. One would think the cognoscenti claiming mastery of systems thinking (with chants like "weather is not climate") would understand this. They do not. Worse, they continue to condemn others who live with the reality. It's like the politicians in Washington telling the Arizona rancher operating near the border that what he sees and experiences is not true. Instead, he's a racist.

Sam L. said...

Our virtue signaling elite are lying to us to convince themselves to be certain that what befalls us will not befall them.

Ares Olympus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ares Olympus said...

The article has a good challenging title, being explicit "Jewish virtue-signalling about Muslim immigration is suicidal"

But it might be a strawman. What was actually said was “I’m not scared of Muslims.” Of course that statement itself is probably part of the problem. You shouldn't be afraid of people in the abstract, but you can be afraid of the actions of those people, and their false beliefs.

Yet, the primary problem remains: You can't tell other people who are afraid of the actions and beliefs of strangers that their abstract fears are wrong just because they are hypothetical. FDR said "The only thing to fear is fear itself", but that was also "virtue signalling", seeing irrational hysteria of imagined dangers can cause worse problems, like building walls and echo chambers, and refusing to dialogue with people who threaten you.

And she also says something more challenging, “Welcoming the stranger is at the core of what it is to be Jewish.”

And that position is all over the bible as well:
Matthew 25:35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,

Hebrews 13:1-2 Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

And it makes sense that religions try to raise our imagination and see we are all in God's hands, and the world can be a better place when we are not simply afraid of strangers because they are strangers.

The idea of "strangers being angels" is certainly a powerful metaphor. Since you can't see into the heart of another, you can't really know what you're seeing.

We shouldn't deny the potential for negative consequences, or risks of new problems created by refugees and immigrants. And we also don't have any clear way of making others feel safe, while safety itself is an illusion, and people will have different tolerances for risk, and different willingness to raise their risks for the raising of strangers.

Calling something "virtue signalling" appears to be an attempt to shame someone you disagree with. And "virtue" is trouble since it can itself be an attempt to silence the opposition. How else do you fight a declared virtue?

But the real problem of virtual signalling of course is that we're all hypocrites, and when we're trying to be strong, we may hide our doubt and try to convince others of something we want to support, and if others agree, then we can use that to silence our own doubts. And later when we're challenged, we may or may not follow through with our declared virtues.

And if we use our own echo chamber to suppress contrary voices, we may be setting outselves up for self-deception, and saying things like "I'm not scared" means you're actually suppressing fear, and neglecting simple means of reducing risks that don't take anything away from anyone else.

And for guests of any sort, it seems like we need something like the Pledge of allegiance or good will.

Following the rule of law is surely the main way we show respect for a culture, but we all allow show contempt for the law in small ways, like speeding or not declaring all our income to the IRS. But people coming from places of poverty or lawlessness will have a harder learning curve to conscience within a new culture. And the probably need help including softer forms of rebuke than law enforcement.

So it all does make me think from refugees to wealthy visitors Saudi Princes alike, all who come here ought to be willing to make a pledge of good will when they come, like at the airport, even a ritualize, and help invoke their own conscience to see their duties to their host.