New Jersey Jewish News is always here for you.
We need your support now.
Your contribution will help us bring you vital news
and frequent updates about the impact of COVID-19.
Blackface shameful, not complicated
search

Blackface shameful, not complicated

How could Steve Lipman write an entire article about Jews and blackface and not even quote a Jew of color? (Feb. 12) This sort of ignorance is unacceptable. Even the article’s title, “Jews and blackface: It’s complicated,” is offensive.

The history is not complicated — it’s shameful. Judaism’s most scared value is honoring the dignity of every human. Humiliating anyone is a desecration — regardless if Al Jolson did it in the 1920s. How can we be so exacting when we see anti-Semitism but ignore racism? As Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel said, “Prejudice is like a hydra, a monster which has many heads, an evil which requires many efforts to overcome. One head sends forth poison against the people of a different race, another against people of a different religion or culture. Thus, the evil of prejudice is indivisible.”

We compromise our ethical integrity by staying silent or even worse — trying to justify our sinful history.

Rabbi Jonathan Leener
Brooklyn

read more:
comments