The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog

Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-02-13

Posted on March 11th, 2013 at 8:19 am by

Wearing the Colors

Public displays of anti-Israel sentiments can often act as an invitation to conversation, a “fish hook”, so to speak. The T-shirt below and similar models are worn most places in Ann Arbor, and regularly at the YMCA in town. This past week the shirt drew a response there from a young, non-Jewish gentleman who was about take a Jewess for his bride. He initially expressed concern that the shirt’s message was a little extreme, and wasn’t sure what he was getting himself into by conversing with its wearer.

T-shirt End Israel

He was fairly knowledgeable about conditions in Palestine, and was open to discussing the path that leads one to the conclusion of demanding an end to Jewish supremacism in Palestine. He was just slightly uncomfortable with promoting the end to the Jewish state, and wondered how the issue would affect his upcoming marriage. He appeared to enjoy the conversation, and allowed that the reaction he received was not the reaction he assumed he would receive.
Both of us agreed that the t-shirt was provocative in the sense that its message provoked conversation and, hopefully, thought and reflection. He felt there might have been other messages that would be less extreme, yet produce conversation.
A good question. Do messages like “Free Palestine” initiate conversation anymore? Does someone run up to the car sporting the “Free Tibet” bumper sticker – almost ubiquitous in liberal Ann Arbor – and beg an explanation?
True, there are the negative reactions at Ann Arbor’s Y, which, to paraphrase Groucho Marx, has more Jews than you can shake a stick at, if that’s your idea of a good time. But these folk aren’t the target audience for t-shirts like this. There are more people out there who share the feeling that Israel is the problem than many Jews would like to admit. Like our presence at Beth Israel, they know the message is reaching more and more people every day. And they prefer to have their skeletons safely locked in the closet.
Want to stir up some discussion? Wear your colors!


Eight Vigilers
Throw “Israel” Off the Fiscal Cliff
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

One Response to “Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-02-13”

  1. Betsy

    Bravo, Henry!  As usual, you tell it like it is.
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