There’s an article on the “This is Leicestershire” website about anti-Semitism, it tells a sorry tale about the ongoing campaign to drive the small Jewish community out of that once prosperous city. Yet oddly enough the article manages to tell the sorry tale without once mentioning who is actually behind the anti-Semitism, merely hints and allusions.
Dr Samuel Lebens believes it is. This is his tale of two cities: an old, welcoming one, and a modern city that he says tolerates hatred of its embattled Jewish minority
I was privileged to grow in up in Leicester; a beautiful city with fantastic schools, and a vibrant multi-cultural community. I cherish the ethnic diversity of my childhood.
Now, I’m studying to become a Rabbi where the study of Judaism is the only religion on the curriculum.
But, so moved was I during my youth by the wealth of multicultural wisdom around me that I chose to take a GCSE in Sikhism – a strikingly elegant religion with an egalitarian ethic.
I was also struck by the beauty of the other religions that surrounded me: Hinduism, Islam, and Christianity. These experiences, I carry with me in to my adult life.
As a leader of the National Union of Students (NUS), I was in joint charge of their campaign against racism and fascism.
Growing up in that community, habituated to the tolerance around me, gave me a confidence in my minority identity. I owe that to the city of Leicester.
But let me describe to you another city.
At best, it can be described as a city that tolerates the anti-Semitism in its midst.
In the past few years, I have found it is almost impossible to walk down its main streets without having anti-Semitic abuse hurled at me and my family.
Cars slow down, with windows opened, in order to unleash a bloodcurdling howl of Jew-hatred.
I don’t feel comfortable to dress, outwardly, as a Jew in that city.
It is a place to which I fear to bring my children; I don’t want them to know the face of anti-Semitism.
A young relative of the Rabbi, in that city, had a pellet gun shot at him indiscriminately. The synagogue there has been the target of repeated acts of vandalism.
Recently, anti-Semites located the home of its only Orthodox Rabbi.
They hurled bricks through its door in the middle of the night. The fear that such an attack can strike into the hearts of a young family is barely describable.
Very few of Leicester’s Jews dress outwardly as Jews (in skull caps, and fringes on the corners of their clothes).
But, when a Jew does walk around dressed in traditional garb, there’s almost bound to be to be a confrontation.
Community cohesion might be good, generally, but if even one religious identity cannot flourish there, then it cannot be said to be a city that “does diversity”.
What are Leicester’s faith communities going to do? What is the council going to do?
Other than issuing reassuring statements, how are they going to combat the rise of anti-Semitic attitudes?
Many of the anti-Semites who have confronted me in Leicester were of clear religious affiliation, and belonged to ethnic minorities themselves. They should have known better.
I haven’t a clue who’s responsible for this most recent spate of attacks; I certainly won’t jump to any assumptions.
Oh, I suspect we know exactly who is behind this spate of attacks and it isn’t the BNP, Combat 18 or even the National Front. We all know exactly who is behind these attacks and I’m fairly sure that the people of Leicester know exactly who is behind these attacks, the perpetrators are Muslims. Yet because community cohesion, diversity and multiculturalism are so ingrained into the journalists and the authors psyche that all they can allude to is the fact that the anti-Semites belong to ethnic minorities themselves. So that lets out pretty much the English majority and will shut down any sort of debate on the subject as the howls of racism will resound if say someone like myself were to point the finger. As the article can’t insult an ideology for fear of violence from Muslims, but can insult all ethnic minorities most of whom are not usually known for their violent over-reactions.
It does seem a clear signal from our ruling elite that despite the logical fallacy of Argumentum Ad Baculum, might is indeed right.
It does appear that the multiculturalism of New Labour is finishing the job that the Nazi’s started, not just here but all over Europe. Then again, Islam’s links with the Nazi’s are well documented anyway.
As an aside, here’s a video by Pat Condell and his own spin on anti-Semitism…