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Bari Weiss on the Tree of Life murders

The murdering barbarian struck literally in Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, and at the synagogue where writer Weiss became a bat mitzvah.

Every Jewish community in America will now have to make sensible decisions about how to ensure that they are not the next victims of someone like Mr. Bowers. But those hard choices should not make us forget the core values that make communities like Squirrel Hill what they are: welcoming, big-hearted and profoundly decent. One of the gifts of the Jewish experience in America is that because we have been so welcomed and so safe here, these values have been able to flourish.

Just as every Jewish couple gets married under a canopy open on all four sides — a replica of the tent modeled for us by Abraham and Sarah — so must Jewish communities keep our tents open. This is the true source of our longevity and resilience.

Now the Jews of Pittsburgh join the growing list of communities around the world that have been terrorized by anti-Semitic fanatics, from Kansas City to Brussels to Mumbai to Jerusalem. The heartbreak is indescribable.

But Squirrel Hill, I am certain, will continue to live by the values that the Jews have sustained for more than 2,000 years. They can never be gunned down.

“Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”


  1. Bill T
    Bill T October 27, 2018 9:39 pm

    Unfortunately the fallout looks to take down GAB.COM. The idiot had an account on GAB and the SJW’s are in a lather about it. PayPal already has cancelled GAB’s account and the host provider Andrew uses is terminating their service as of 9 AM EST Monday. Best case looks to be weeks before they might get back online. The idiot also had Twitter and Facebook accounts but they aren’t getting shut down. It appears that that the leftist are so insecure that they are afraid of approximately 700,000 people.

  2. Joel
    Joel October 28, 2018 5:20 am

    700,000 easily-demonized people afflicted by X% of gleeful trolls and who knows how many actual sick freaks. Shooting up a synagogue? My god, it wasn’t long ago at all I thought people capable of doing or even thinking things like that had been driven so deep into the shadows that they must be approaching extinction. This brave new racially frenzied world has not only brought them out, it has given them an appalling sort of cachet in some skanky corners of the internet. I never saw the inside of Gab, but by all accounts they really collected there. Ought to nuke it from orbit before the cockroaches can scatter, says a big bitter chunk of my brain.

    This makes me so angry and sad. I had to listen to shit about jews and niggers while I was growing up until I started hating my own redneck kind. Real racist freaks like that were always the minority and I doubt I ever met one really tempted to go one-man death squad on anyone. But in my opinion the best thing to come out of the mid-60’s was the drive to push that whole mindset out of acceptable society. Now all that is undone and the freaks are back.

  3. Mark Call
    Mark Call October 28, 2018 6:49 am

    Nice piece.

    I, too, was teaching Vayeira in our fellowship at about the same time. But most of us in the building were armed.

    Because we know the real picture goes beyond racism. The ancient hatred is for that ancient God we worship, and His Word.

  4. Pat
    Pat October 28, 2018 7:11 am

    No, Mark Call, the “ancient hatred” is not for God, or any gods, but for all those who look, act, or think differently. And it’s spawned by an “ancient ignorance” of Them vs Us — we get to them first so they won’t get to us.

    “We” always think we’re better than “them”, that we know more, and that we have the final answer to everything — and only when we stop looking at other people through that magnifying glass will we see the human likeness. And consequently begin to act out the humaneness we are capable of by applying reason to our actions.

  5. Claire
    Claire October 28, 2018 9:58 am

    “the “ancient hatred” is not for God, or any gods”

    Agreed, Pat. I doubt most anti-Semites even know much about Judaism as a religion. They hate man-made caricatures and beliefs about Jews. The closest most anti-Semites have ever come to hating Jews for their religion is hating them for made-up crap like “sacrificing babies in their rites” or “killing Christ.” In yesterday’s tragedy, the murderer’s big hate, according to his own statements, was for a Jewish-run group that specializes in bringing immigrants — including Muslims and Hispanics — to the U.S.

  6. Antibubba
    Antibubba October 28, 2018 8:19 pm

    But to those like him, Claire, Jews are unwanted outsiders too.

  7. E. Garrett Perry
    E. Garrett Perry October 29, 2018 12:55 am

    Anti-semites, the really serious ones, absolutely hate Jews for their religion. They believe (frequently as a result of Talmud quotations either taken wildly out of context or fabricated entirely) that Judaism as a religion explicitly condones child rape, encourages fraud, requires that Jews actively work towards the enslavement and destruction of all non-Jews (but with especial venom to be directed at white Christians), and promotes the idea that there is no depravity which is not to be pursued to that end. About 2/3 of the time they support their position by posting a “selection of translations from a recently-obtained COMPLETE, UNCENSORED COPY OF THE BABYLONIAN TALMUD!!!” These half-dozen citations are always the same, always described as a recent translation, always promise “more soon,” and have been floating around since about 1999 that I can recall.

    They’re also past masters of projection and DARVO* who are perfectly willing to prattle for years about how the Holocaust never happened, while in the next breath lamenting the lack, and in the following to describe in great detail how -they- will -actually- enact such destruction when the Inevitable Revolution sweeps them to power. Martin Lindstedt is the most verbally unhinged of this bunch that I’ve encountered, but better-spoken dickhats with simular ideas are more common than a lot of folks think. My wife had a high-school English teacher back during the Clinton Regime who flatly denied the Holocaust in class and stuck to it, and this was in an area about an hour outside of Boston! There was a California GOP candidate after Pelosi’s seat earlier this year who stated that the proper treatment for Jews was to be raised as livestock for the express purpose of torturing them to death as revenge for the alleged thousands of years of Jewish depravity and worldwide control. At one point a few weeks after making that statement he was polling at 18%- second place behind Pelosi, and the only other double-digit candidate at the time. The CA GOP expelled him at their convention, but that level of support suggests that at least in some circles his views were very well-received.

    The funniest thing about anti-semites, to me, is their weird insistance that all Jews worldwide function as a sort of racial hive-mind (as required by the SECRET BABYLONIAN TALMUD!!!), with every Jew of whatever denomination or level of observance working in worldwide lockstep to enslave and destroy the goyim. Have these people ever -met- a Jew? Spent two minutes around one? You can’t get half a dozen Jews to agree on where to go for Chinese food on Christmas! How are the most argumentative people on earth supposed to run a giant conspiracy?! You’d have better luck with the Irish! Important as it is, all 5000+ pages of the Talmud, plus the Midrash aside, are basically the written records of 2,500 years of continuous Rabbinical squabbling. You think gun people are pedantic and detail-oriented? Oy! Spend some time drinking and arguing with an Orthodox Rabbi sometime if you want your debating skills sharpened right up! And these are the people running the world? Pssssh.

    *A theraputic term describing the tendency of domestic or workplace abusers to Deny Abuse, Reverse Victim/Offender.

  8. Claire
    Claire October 29, 2018 6:45 am


    True. Anti-Semites are very good at justifying hatred of Jews by virtually inventing a whole new religion. I wonder if there’s ever been anti-Semite who hated Jews for their actual religion.

    But to those like him, Claire, Jews are unwanted outsiders too.

    Oh, absolutely agreed, Antibubba. The murderous bastard almost certainly didn’t “hate their religion” or their god and almost certainly did hate the fact that Jews are not only outsiders, but generally successful outsiders. (Both genuinely successful in life and “successful” as in the shooter’s belief that somehow “Jews control Trump” and all that familiar Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Jews-run-the-world crap.)

  9. James
    James October 29, 2018 6:59 am

    “They’re also past masters of projection and DARVO* who are perfectly willing to prattle for years about how the Holocaust never happened, while in the next breath lamenting the lack, …”

    Well, okay. I’ve never met one of the anti-semites you describe, but I have of course seen their writings online, and, based on those writings, I generally agree with your assessment. That said, to dogmatically declare any sort of holocaust skepticism, even about the accuracy of the numbers, to be beyond the limits of acceptable discourse, is a disservice to all, including Jewish people, in my opinion. If nothing else, that sort of dogmatism positively cultivates skepticism. In an increasing number of Western countries, “antisemitism” is a criminal offense (UK, France, Germany, Canada, and maybe others). If you want to cultivate irrational resentment of Jews, making them a unique and special class immune to criticism is probably a good way to accomplish that. Is that what any reasonable person really wants?

  10. Comrade X
    Comrade X October 29, 2018 8:31 am

    A few months ago I was in a Jewish neighborhood in Seattle, when we went by the Synagogue there were guards with guns standing watch;

    “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

    Of course I was armed and if needed I would be helping too. I would not think of going to any house of worship today without being armed, but to be honest that goes for everywhere, gun free zones need to be avoided.

  11. larryarnold
    larryarnold October 29, 2018 9:45 am

    IMNSHO, if Jews were in control of the world, they’d probably be doing a much better job of running it.

  12. Claire
    Claire October 29, 2018 10:35 am

    LOL, Larry. And partly they’d be doing a better job because they’d be so busy disputing over the fine points that they’d end up with a whole lot of laissez faire, whether or not that’s what a majority of them intended.

  13. Joel
    Joel October 29, 2018 10:54 am

    Can you imagine a bunch of rabbinical jurists arguing about how much strict scrutiny can dance on the head of a pin? They’d go on for centuries and leave the rest of us alone.

    On the other hand, when I think about the huge body of weird oppressive laws that grew up around a little thing like “don’t boil a kid in its mother’s milk”… Never mind.

  14. Mark Call
    Mark Call October 29, 2018 12:51 pm

    Look up the Karaites, Joel, although they’re not alone in rejecting the authority of “oral tradition”.

    Suffice it to say, however, that I reject claims of those who don’t know the facts to tell the rest of us why haters DON’T hate. (Anybody here seriously expect an Obama or Hitlery to tell you the real reason(s) they hate the idea of ‘bitter clingers’ or ‘deplorables’ being armed?)

  15. Claire
    Claire October 29, 2018 1:41 pm

    “I reject claims of those who don’t know the facts to tell the rest of us why haters DON’T hate.”

    You’re certainly free to reject any claims you want to reject — as others are free to reject yours.

    You speak of facts. Yet as usual I see you haven’t offered any facts to support your position. My past experience with you is that when asked for actual facts (not interpretations), you dodge the issues.

    In addition to using both this site and (previously) the Cabal to promote yourself, your podcasts, and your religion, you’re now moving into troll territory with the sneering remarks and superior attitude toward anyone who disagrees with you. Mark Call. Watch your step. You’re this close to getting banned.

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