Filling the Spiritual Void with Politics – doesn’t work
by Matthew Hausman
Progressive Jews wear their partisan allegiances on their sleeves during election season, often taking positions that are so inconsistent with tradition as to cast doubt on whether their values are Jewish at all, or merely secular political dogmas. The most fundamental priorities for those claiming loyalty to tradition should be respect for ancestral values and commitment to religious, cultural and national survival. Instead, progressives espouse views that are hostile to Jewish continuity and often display greater affinity for left-wing anti-Semites, Islamic radicals, and revisionist narratives that deny Jewish history.
Unbalanced criticism of Israel and disrespect for tradition are not authentic Jewish perspectives, but instead betray discomfort with Jewish identity and history. It seems the further removed they become from normative belief and practice, the more progressive Jews seek to fill the spiritual void with secular philosophies and political ideals. In many ways, left-wing politics is just as incompatible with Jewish tradition as so-called Jews for Jesus. Both embrace positions that contravene tradition, and both take advantage of ignorance to promote alien ideologies as authentically Jewish.
The agendas of progressive groups like J Street and the New Israel Fund (NIF) are inconsistent with Israel’s continuity as a Jewish state. Though such organizations may claim affinity for Jewish values, they validate causes and programs that delegitimize Israel and undercut Jewish cultural integrity…
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