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Jews need to stop using the word antisemitism.

I think we need to have an important conversation. It’s a bit controversial, which is not my usual style. I prefer unity and understanding, but this conversation is critical. We must courageously examine the language that shapes our world.

I think we Jews need to stop using the term ‘antisemitism’ when referring to Jew hatred.

The term ‘antisemitism,’ though historically entrenched, falls short in capturing the profound and personal anguish of hatred against Jews. Coined in the late 19th century, it was designed to cloak an old venom – the deep-seated animosity towards Jewish people – in a guise of scientific respectability. But let us be clear: this term, ‘antisemitism,’ with its clinical overtones, does not begin to encapsulate the tears, the fears, and the bloodshed that have been the harrowing legacy of Jew hatred.

The originator of ‘antisemitism,’ Wilhelm Marr, sought to replace the raw truth of ‘Judenhaas’ (Jew hatred) with a term that seemed less abrasive but was equally toxic. In doing so, he unwittingly opened a door for future misinterpretations and misuses. This has led to absurd assertions, witnessed on my own social media platforms, where nearly 700,000 comments have been censored, many claiming that one cannot be antisemitic if they are Semitic. This is not just a linguistic misstep; it is a moral evasion of the highest order.

The term ‘Jew hatred’ is unambiguous. It bears the weight of centuries of persecution, of voices silenced, of dreams shattered. It is a term that refuses to mask the pain, the resilience, and the unyielding spirit of the Jewish people. It demands recognition of the raw, undeniable truth of our suffering and our enduring strength.

We are in an era where the language of discrimination is being rightfully scrutinized and challenged. Just as the Black Lives Matter movement has sparked a global dialogue on racial identity and representation, so too must we reevaluate how we speak about the prejudices faced by the Jewish community. By embracing the term ‘Jew hatred,’ we honor not just the truth of our past but also the unwavering courage and hope of our present and future.

In this era of change, let us stand together, united in our clarity and resolve. We are not simply combating an abstract concept of antisemitism; we are facing the very real, very human affliction of Jew hatred. This battle is not just for the Jewish community, but for all who believe in a world where respect, understanding, and love triumph over hate. In our unflinching honesty, in our shared humanity, lies our greatest strength and our most profound inspiration.

As difficult as this discussion is for me, I think it’s imperative that we get it right. It is we that will set the tone for future generations. It is we, Jewish people who have the responsibility to make sure that the terms and words we use leave no space for misunderstanding and misappropriation. The hatred that is being aimed at our people is ‘Jew hatred’ plain and simple.

I would love to hear you thoughts on this matter and I believe by standing together in solidarity against all forms of hatred, we strengthen our collective resolve to build a more just and compassionate world.

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