I almost lost my Hamantaschen


Mark Bilsky"A person is obligated to get drunk on Purim until he cannot tell the difference between ‘blessed is Mordecai’ and ‘cursed is Haman’.” Purim is upon us. The wicked Haman convinces the clownish King Ahasuerus to kill all the Jews by executive order, but Queen Esther prevails upon the King to rescind this dictate and Haman is hanged.

Day after day, our current reality reads like a story concocted for Purim. We see a carnival of populist buffoonery in which reality is indistinguishable from satire. Professional comedians, who straddle the line between reality and fiction, feel like the politicians are trespassing, usurping their turf.

Image of a crownHow can comedians compete with a president who insists that God stopped the rain at his inauguration and is utterly obsessed with the size of the inauguration crowd? A leader who seriously contends that three million people voted illegally and caused him to lose the popular vote? A president who says the media is the enemy of the American people?

How can comedians outdo an Israeli Prime Minister who repeatedly says that settlements are not an obstacle to peace, and who caused a severe crisis in Israel's relations with Mexico with one pro-Trump tweet? A Prime Minister who is facing three criminal investigations for corruption while enjoying adoring coverage by a giveaway newspaper funded by his American billionaire casino magnate sugar-daddy?

I wish it were just the remnants of a hangover when I hear that hardcore right-wingers in the Israeli Knesset passed an "entry bill," which would keep supporters of boycotting Israeli West Bank settlements from being issued an entry visa. I almost lost my Hamantaschen after realizing this was true. Zionist American Jews like me, who love Israel and have invested time and money in support of Israel, would be allowed into Cuba, but not Israel, if this atrocity is ever enforced.

How can anyone satirize an Israeli Prime Minister who says "there is no greater supporter for the Jewish people and the Jewish state than President Donald Trump," a president who suggested that Jews may have been responsible for the bomb-threats against JCCs, and who literally stated that a one-state "solution" works for him?

Americans for Peace Now is the antithesis of such recklessness and ignorance. APN speaks the sober truth. APN and Peace Now in Israel work every day to ensure that we remember that only through diplomacy and responsible compromises can Israel secure its future as a democracy and a Jewish state. The bottom line is we must support those who are fighting the occupation and the expansion of settlements.

Image of jester hatMy Israeli friends tell me that a common Hebrew slang expression says "not every day is Purim." Loosely translated: "you can't fool all the people all the time."

Sadly, in today's American political arena and in Israel's, it is Purim every day.

And yet, I wish you a Freilichen Purim and appreciate your support of our good deeds. Please help us prevail with your tax-deductible contribution today.