A joint Rosh Hashanah statement from a group of community organisations

September 29, 2016 by J-Wire Staff
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A group of Australian Jewish organisations has released a Rosh Hashanah message highlighting their commitment to a tolerant Australia.

The groups said: “As Jewish organisations committed to social justice, egalitarianism and the values of liberal democracy, we are committed to an Australian community that is inclusive, tolerant and diverse.
The Jewish people are only too aware of the damage that can occur when religious or ethnic groups are targeted by hate speech. We understand that an Australia built on acceptance can empower and uplift the potential of diverse communities. Indeed, it is these values that have enabled the Jewish community to become a thriving and contributing part of the wider Australian community.

Therefore, the rise in Islamophobia and racism are of particular concern. Extremist voices that exploit dog whistle politics to target minority groups, such as Muslim Australians and refugees and people seeking asylum have no place in a multicultural and pluralist society like Australia.

However, discrimination against minority groups does not just damage our collective morality; it harms progress towards peace and security by creating a society that alienates and divides parts of our community, driving disaffected young people towards radicalisation.

We believe that bigoted views represent the worst in our society and weaken the fabric of our vibrant multicultural society. We therefore stand proudly, arm in arm, with our Muslim friends, and all victims of racism, in recognising that there is more that unites us than divides us.

As Rosh Hashana approaches, a time when our community gathers in all its diversity to reflect on our deeds over the past year and affirm our collective desire to be a more caring and charitable community, we hope and pray for a more tolerant and compassionate Australia that celebrates the dignity of difference.

In the coming year, may the voices of ignorance, stereotyping and racism be drowned out by those of love, compassion and pluralism.

The executive director of The New Israel Fund Australia Foundation Liam Getreu added: “Entering the new year offers us a time to reflect on how the world around us has changed. Recent times have brought waves of racism and bigotry – hate speech against Muslims and asylum seekers, and a rise in antisemitism. Jews have a unique role to play in fighting against that wave – and we’re proud to be leaders in that conversation.

The organisations signing this statement are diverse, and it shows that this fighting racism isn’t about your political or religious identity. We need to stamp out hate speech and bigotry everywhere it exists. With Pauline Hanson and Donald Trump in the headlines, the more voices of inclusion and compassion, the better our political discourse will be.”

Signed:

    • Ameinu Australia

    • Council of Progressive Rabbis

    • Rabbi Gersh Lazarow and Temple Beth Israel

    • Habonim Dror Australia

    • Hashomer Hatzair Australia

    • Hineni Youth and Welfare Australia

    • Netzer Australia

    • New Israel Fund Australia

    • Progressive Judaism Victoria

    • Shira Hadasha Melbourne

    • Rabbi Shneur Waks – The ArK Centre

    • Stand Up: Jewish Commitment To A Better World

    • Union of Progressive Judaism

Comments

3 Responses to “A joint Rosh Hashanah statement from a group of community organisations”
  1. Alan Freedman says:

    These “progressives” on the Left accuse anyone who doesn’t agree with them of being divisive, yet by shutting down, and shouting down, anyone who wants to have a conversation about contemporary issues prove that they are indeed the causes of this divisiveness in our community.

  2. Robert Weil says:

    I’m looking for the Rosh Hashanah message, but all I see is a load of politically correct claptrap signed by the ‘usual suspects’. How tragic that these people have control of this generation of our youth. Instead of being imbued with authentic, traditional core Jewish values, their minds are being poisoned with this leftist hogwash.

  3. Michael Burd says:

    I think I am going to be sick .

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