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09 February 2008 @ 03:18 pm
Just a last word before I leave  
I was raised Jewish and Catholic, until my Jewish father converted to Catholicism and expected me to abandon the Jewish part of my identity along with him. I was forced to attend Catholic services and to be confirmed in the Church, even though I was starting to find the Church politically and religiously stifling. After leaving home, I settled on Quakerism as a religion I could deal with, but have always felt a connection to Judaism as well, because it became part of my identity early in life. Since then, I have felt out of place in both Christian and Jewish circles because I can't feel "completely" one or the other. I've even been quite harshly rejected, often by Jewish groups, because I can't be "part Jewish" and because traditional approaches to Judaism say that 1) I'm not Jewish because my mother wasn't, and 2) Judaism is the One Way and is incompatible with following any other religion, especially not Christianity.

When I saw the last post, my first response was to agree that praying for Jewish conversion is antisemitic, and that we should assume no group is inherently more whiny than the other, so when Jews say they're bothered by something, it should be taken seriously. I later also said that I didn't think ANY ethnic or religious group, including Christianity, was inherently special or kind, and explained that I didn't consider myself "special" as an ethnic Jew or as a Christian. This was in response to someone saying that the Jews he knew were nice to him; I wanted to point out that out-group members are often a lot nicer to you than in-group members, it's not something special about that group but in fact a result of the fact that NO group is special. It bothers me almost as much when someone says "Jews are nice" as when someone says "Jews are mean." Apparently this was enough for a moderator to accuse me of being a Dominionist in disguise, even though my profile suggests otherwise, even though I said that I didn't think Christianity was special, even though I explicitly denied it. Apparently only Dominionists think that no group is special.

How ironic is it that a comment, originally motivated by someone acting surprised that "outsiders" like Jews would be kinder to them than Christians, would lead to this. I learned from my life that my "own people," whatever they are, are not likely to be particularly kind to me. This includes Jews, Christians, and, apparently, even others who are recovering from religious abuse. There are Dominionists that have been kinder to me than this community.

Considering my original comment that people should take it seriously when a group gets offended by your behavior, it's also ironic that, when I complained that I (and most Jews) considered the concept of "essential Jewishness," when employed by non-Jews, antisemitic, I was ignored. And "schooled" on what it meant to be Jewish, by someone with only second-hand knowledge of the religion. Because apparently members of the Jewish community have no right to say what they consider offensive without being labeled the Enemy.

I have no safe spaces. I have no home. The conservative Jewish community ensured that, the Roman Catholic community ensured that, my own family ensured that, and now this community is as well.
SwissCeltswisscelt on February 9th, 2008 09:39 pm (UTC)
Messianic Judaism is what I called vile. If you consider that a personal attack, then perhaps I was not wrong in my assessment.
one of those feathery maniacssammka on February 9th, 2008 09:44 pm (UTC)
Well, you also called me a Messianic Jew. So, by the transitive property...
SwissCeltswisscelt on February 9th, 2008 10:05 pm (UTC)
...yes? What, exactly?
one of those feathery maniacssammka on February 10th, 2008 07:08 am (UTC)
If you call someone x, and then call x "vile," you have called that person vile, and they are entitled to take it as an insult whether or not they actually are x.
SwissCeltswisscelt on February 10th, 2008 07:07 pm (UTC)
First off, welcome back.

Secondly, you're doing the same thing I was doing: Reading into what was actually written. I do consider Messianic Judaism to be vile, it's true... for the same reasons I consider Dominionism to be vile. As for you, well, I don't know you. Thus even if you are a Messianic Jew, I don't know enough about you to call you vile.

If the shoe fits, though, wear it. I'm not going to apologize for calling Messianic Judaism vile, even if you feel hurt in the process.