I Am Jewish and I Am Appalled

This blog will be short and not so sweet.

I am Jewish and I am apalled at the disgraceful lack of any semblance of decent manners and political stupidity of Israel Interior Minister Eli Yishai. As the world knows, Yishai's office blindsided Vice President Biden, a guest of Israel on a sensitive diplomatic mission, by announcing during this visit his plans to build 1,600 new homes in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo...

My childhood rabbi, Dr. Uri Miller, who led Baltimore's Orthadox Beth Jacob Synagogue, was an extraordinary intellectual with a heart of gold. His friends numbered members on the Supreme Court of the time; he was one of the first rabbis to use the pulpit to disgrace segregation and prejudice; he offered the closing prayer at the famed March on Washington.

I would like to share a teaching of Rabbi Miller that I am hoping someone will forward to the Minister, who has purposefully shamed his country and embarrased his guest and America.

Rabbi Miller taught my Bat Mitzvah class that a host has an enormous responsibility to be kind and gracious at all times. And he explained that with such a host, if a Jew were ever served food that was not in keeping with kosher dietary laws, and there was nothing else readily available to eat, it was better to eat the food that was served with gracious intentions than to embarrass the host. Rabbi Miller said that G-d would understand.

How could a host have been so purposefully rude to a visiting dignitary, the country he represented, and the President he served? Obviously, the Interior Minister, who apologized for his timing but not his planning, intended to send the most arrogant of messages to American and our President and disgrace us all.

Meanwhile Benjamin Netanyahu claims to have not know of plans to make this announcement. If this is true, there is only one way to save face and restore honor to his guest and his homeland: Interior Minister Yishai must lose his post immediately. The only meal this menace of a public servant deserves is humiliation: served cold.