I don’t know how many of you know, but a little over a week ago, in New York City, a guy and a few of his friends, were on the subway – the Q train – and there were groups of people on the train, and four people come on, all Jewish. Somebody screams out “Merry Christmas,” and in good feeling, they yelled back “And a Happy Hanukkah.”
Almost instantly, at least ten guys closed in on them. One of the guys immediately hiked up his sleeve to show a tattoo of Christ, and said “Happy Hanukkah? That’s when the Jews killed Jesus.” The group then increased to fourteen, men and women, who began taunting the four Jews, and called them “dirty Jews,” and “Jew bitches.” And a fight ensued.
Is that why I’m telling you this story? No. I’m going to go back about 25 years, and I was at an art museum in Pasadena, and there was an event showing gratitude to what Jews call “the righteous Gentiles.” That is the most magnificent thing in Jewish tradition to say about a non-Jew: to call them a “righteous Gentile.” And these are the folks who, during World War II, risked their lives and the lives of their children to save Jews from the Nazis. When any of these people were caught, they would be shot, hung upside down in the town. They’d watch their children die, and then they’d be killed. You would think a lot of people would go, “Y’know what? I’m not going to do this. I don’t want to risk my kids and myself.” But the righteous Gentiles, who were Christian, risked everything. And the important part of this entire exhibit, was the part where they asked these people why were you willing to risk everything? The lives of your children, for goodness sakes, to save a Jew? And they all gave exactly the same answer. I read all these reports, and I couldn’t believe it – they just had me in tears. They all said the same simple thing: because I was brought up that that’s the right thing to do. To protect people against evil – that’s how I was brought up. It was the right thing to do. Very simple.
Back to last week. All of a sudden, these four guys and gals are being pummeled, and one person gets into the fray. A Muslim, from Bangladesh, jumped to their aid, and was likewise pummeled and taunted, and he risked his life to help four Jews. As one of the young people who was attacked (an honor student at Hunter College) said: “A random Muslim guy jumped in and helped a Jewish guy on Hanukkah. THAT is a miracle. He’s basically a hero. He jumped in to help us.”
This young man who jumped in was called a hero, and his answer was: “I just did what I had to do. My parents raised me that way. My father always said ‘stand up for people and do good to your fellow man.’ I’m not a hero,” he said. “I did what people should do every day. I just did what I had to do, because my parents raised me that way.” No jihad, but a commitment to stand up for people and do good for your fellow man.
He also added, “It’s pretty sad that someone would get offended over someone just saying ‘Happy Hanukkah.’ I don’t know why they flipped out so much. They must be angry people.” Poor guy. He’s got two black eyes, and celebrated Hanukkah with the four people he helped.
One thing I don’t understand is why the ten people who were arrested have not been charged with a hate crime. I personally don’t believe in hate crimes – I think if you call somebody a “dirty” something – a dirty black, a dirty Jew, dirty anything, you shouldn’t get more years in jail. You should get all those extra years in jail just for hurting them – I don’t think special categories of people should exist. It should be the maximum period. Nonetheless, since the law is on the books, I’d sure like to know why New York hasn’t charged them with a hate crime. “Dirty Jew” and “Jew bitches” and an attack? Sounds like a hate crime.
One of the guys, who sounds like a real moron, is sadly, the son of a city firefighter, who’s in Iraq right now. This idiot teenager pleaded guilty to a 2005 bias crime against blacks. Now it’s Jews. And you know what he said? “I’m trying to stay out of trouble. When I get out, I want to go into the military.” I don’t think so. I don’t think he’s military material. He’s a jerk. Here he is attacking blacks and attacking Jews, and he says “I’m not a racist.”