Friday, February 26, 2010

Secular Israeli society & violence


Last week, an 18-year old boy went out to a movie at a Petach Tikva mall with two friends. They encountered a group of teens demanding a cigarette. The boy said he did not have one. The response came immediately: Blows to his entire body that prompted his hospitalization, putting his life at risk. The boy underwent three surgeries and regained his consciousness only five days later.

And it happened because he said he had no cigarette.

Two days later, the victim's father was interviewed. The interviewer referred to the attackers as "normative teens" from "good families." In the news, after the violent attacks, they are always described that way. Yet the truth is that a more fitting description would be "human animals devoid of morality and values" and perhaps also "violent whippersnappers." Describing them as "normative boys" is outrageous. [...]


  1. 'whippersnappers' denotes a certain fondness IMHO. And these 'boys' deserve to be severely punished.

  2. An identity/relationship predicated on shared interests of the moment has no depth. Interests change. They are mercurial and shallow. They forge no bond or lasting reality. Others become worthless if they don't share those temporary interests or needs or desire.

    An identity/relationship predicated on shared values is lasting and ever refining. Over time, values mature and refine. Who you- and others- are, becomes more nuanced.

    An identity/relationship predicated on values holds the potential of the other in high esteem.

    Teach a child that his worth is wrapped up in his tangible accomplishments or interests, you have eventual failure.

    Teach a child his worth is to be found in who he is and the potential of who he might be as a human being and you have an example of 'b'telem elokim'.


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