Sunday, August 17, 2014

NOTE FROM SAM HARRIS'S BLOG (on Gaza): "It is worth observing, however, that Israel isn’t “Jewish” in the sense that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are “Muslim.” As my friend Jerry Coyne points out, Israel is actually less religious than the U.S., and it guarantees freedom of religion to its citizens. Israel is not a theocracy, and one could easily argue that its Jewish identity is more cultural than religious. However, if we ask why the Jews wouldn’t move to British Columbia if offered a home there, we can see the role that religion still plays in their thinking.]

Sam Harris seems to feel quite strongly, despite several caveats, that Israel is, in sum, right. That's a position I cannot agree with, but especially I don't know what he's talking about in the "note" above. What does the part about Israel not being Jewish in the same way Saudi Arabia... is Muslim mean? And all the rest. Don't get it.

I definitely feel there's no excuse for Israel's behavior in Gaza and on the West Bank. I also believe Jews SHOULD be held to a higher standard and, while I thought right after the Holocaust that they (we) should have a country of their (our) own, I'm not at all sure I believe that now. Plus, why shouldn't the Palestinians have a country of their own. It was theirs when the Jews came. Seven hundred thousand people were displaced. That is wrong.

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