There is an old saying: Before you judge someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
I firmly believe that this saying not only applies to an issue on the personal level, but it also applies to an issue on a political or cultural level.
Israel has been one of the go to countries for American politicians to visit over the years. Rep Rashida Tlaib (D-Michigan) and Rep Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) will be the latest American politicians to visit Israel, in spite of their openly antisemitic and anti-Israel comments.
When it comes these two members of Congress, I have to admit that I have two distinct feelings. I was appalled by you know who’s comments on Twitter last weekend. These women, both as citizens and members of the political class, have every right to speak their minds. However, I was hurt and disgusted by their public statements regarding Israel and the Jews in general.
Israel, like any country is imperfect, both at the government level and the personal level. This country, like all other countries, must face head on the racism that exists within her borders.
That being said, I have been to Israel twice in my life. I saw a country like my own. I saw a multi-cultural country in which most citizens (hopefully) don’t care about the religion or background of their fellow citizen. They just go about their business.
I challenge anyone who believes that Israel is an apartheid state to visit Israel. Ignore, for a short time, what the peanut gallery is saying. Make a decision based on what you are seeing, thinking and feeling.
I am not in the minds of Reps Tlaib or Omar. Nor can I influence what they are thinking or feelings. But I can hope and wish that their visit opens their eyes and convinces them to see the truth about Israel.