Monday, December 19, 2022

JEWS NOT WELCOME scrawled on Maryland high school entrance sign


Late on 12/16/22 or early on 12/17/22, which was Shabbat, someone spray painted those words on the entrance sign of a high school in my Maryland town. The high school my daughter attended and son attends. Two days after the students had an antisemitism seminar.

credit: Montgomery County (MD) Councilmember Kate Stewart

This could be hate. This could be ignorance. Either way it's a sucker punch.

Over the years, I've tried to do my small part to support other marginalized groups and honestly did not think I would ever find myself posting so personally about my own minority tribe (less than 3% of the U.S. population, less than 1% of the world population).

Of the 289 kids in my own suburban Connecticut high school class, 15 or fewer were Jewish. I never directly experienced antisemitism there. Or, luckily, anywhere. At least not that I recall or was aware of.

On the first page of Bill the Boy Wonder, Milton Finger looks at a sign in a 1930s New York City store window. 


His response: change his name to Bill. Keep his Judaism under a mask.

Changing one’s name is not the answer now, though change is, of course, imperative.

The Jews I know do not need me or anyone to assure them we are just as welcome as anyone else. 

We JEWS are NOT WELCOME to accept intolerance.

Words wound. Words also work wonders. An aggression happened here. A miracle can, too.

The next night, hundreds—some of whom were not Jewishgathered at the freezing point at the sign (ugliness blacked out) for the start of the Festival of Lights.

Happy Chanukah for those who celebrate. Peace for those who identify as human.

my bar mitzvah and former hairline