Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Day 215- Birthright

“We all feel and understand the hearts of children, but on the other hand, there are Zionist considerations and ensuring the Jewish character of the state of Israel. The problem is that these two components clash.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Dear Mr. President,

I agree with Lou Dobbs. That's actually too weird for me to feel comfortable saying out loud, so let me say instead, Lou Dobbs agrees with me about the growing number of GOP senators who want to repeal the 14th amendement, in that we both think they're ridiculous. It reminded me of an article I'd read recently about the Israeli decision to deport 400 children born in Israel to foreign laborers. While the decision made could have been much worse, the idea that it was done, as PM Netanyahu stated, to ensure "the Jewish character of the state of Israel" did not sit well with me. In general, I'm opposed to systems of government where a person's religion determines their rights. The idea that several of my friends born in America have a birthright to Israeli citizenship that these children (not to mention the millions of Palestinians forced out in 1948 and 1967) born in Israel do not have, it just doesn't seem right. It's not a debate I'm likely to win, and I do understand the need for Jews to have a protected place and the means to defend themselves against another holocaust. I just don't think that denying the rights of non-Jews born in Israel is an acceptable cost.

I wonder, what character of our nation would we be trying to preserve in repealing 14th amendment rights? Our white, English-speaking character? Or, perhaps, the illusion that white Americans who took this land from the native people have a superior right to its resources than the descendants of non-white populations that have lived on this continent for generations before Europeans knew its name? I, for one, do not think that character, or that illusion, is worth protecting at all, but especially not if it means devaluing our constitution. I think that the rights guaranteed in our constitution, the spirit of freedom and equality enshrined in its words, that lofty and yet to be perfected ideal is the only character we ought to fight to ensure. Denying these basic values to persecute immigrants and minorities for the sake of keeping our white, English-speaking, Christian majority is simply not what this country stands for.

And I'm glad to know that Lou Dobbs agrees with me.

Respectfully yours,


1 comment:

  1. Absolutely Kelsey. The two countries formed in recent history by mass immigration now want to block it in the most extreme way possible.

    Everything about it smacks of racism to the point of nazism. It sickens me.