By Paul Richard Harris, Axis of Logic
Axis of Logic
Sunday, Nov 15, 2015
I’ve been following the debate over several articles in the past week. I think I might have added two or three comments, but mostly I’ve stayed out of it. However, I thought since it is I who keeps publishing these articles that you find so offensive, I should probably put in my two cents worth (one cent American).
As you know, we’ve had these debates between us over and over so I thought it might be worthwhile to let some others take my point of view - I was pretty sure the group of us are on the same page with this issue.
Using myself as the example, you know I’m not anti-Semitic and if I can be anti-Zionist without being anti-Semitic, there is no reason that others couldn’t do the same. [By the way, I’m grateful that you have never trotted out the old canard that I must be self-loathing.] I recognize that there are those who do use anti-Zionism to cover a racial bias, but there are far more who don’t. As I’ve said before, being anti-Zionist or opposed to the current actions of Israel does NOT equate to anti-Semitism.
I think I can say with confidence that the excellent crew who have engaged you over the past week or so (Jim Miles, thnkfryrslf, Tony Shaker, Les, Sandi, Vivienne Perkins) have no anti-Jewish bias. And you should be able to see that they all have substantial scholarship to back them up.
I think you and I know that we’ll never agree on these issues, but I have to commend you for your tenacity and stick-to-itiveness over the past several days. You’ve been up against some very clever and capable people, far superior to me, and you’ve managed to keep on responding. The problem is, you’ve made less and less sense as the debate has continued.
You know I can’t agree with your position on Israel, but I accept you legitimately believe in your position - and you are entitled to do so. But this week’s debate has not done your credibility any favours.
The crux of your argument whenever there is criticism of Israel, its history, or its present actions is to immediately bring out the anti-Semitic trump card. I know you’re an intelligent man, so I’m surprised that you have no better ammunition. During this past week, you have maintained your position even in the face of substantial historical documentation (much of it footnoted and annotated) by either dismissing this clear evidence or ignoring it altogether. And sometimes even throwing in a little history that, it seems to me, you’ve just made up.
In any event, I would like to believe that you are capable of accepting that others have looked at the same historical, political, and social realities as you but have reached different conclusions. For the most part, the debate over the past few days has stayed away from name-calling - but not entirely. And I’d have to say where the attacks became personal, it was generally you who instigated it.
As for your own viewpoint on these issues, I’m reminded of:
I’ll stand right here, In case you don’t recognize this, it’s the position taken by the Northgoing Zax and the Southgoing Zax when they meet in the middle and neither of them will move to one side to let the other pass. Eventually, an entire city is constructed around them while they continue their standoff. Forever. (Dr Seuss - a splendid Jewish author, by the way).
I can and I will,
if it makes you and me,
and whole world stand still
So I will continue to publish articles that will rankle you and I certainly encourage you to continue to respond. But I think it might be helpful to see if there is ANY way you can accept that the other guy might have a valid point. Some of the things that Israel does today cannot - by anyone of good conscience - be seen as anything more than barbaric. If you can recognize the bad while applauding the good, you’ll be better for it.
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