Biblical calls to action form part of our society’s foundation, at least in theory.
So, how do we each help our society to become more fully inclusive for all of us, and to respond to the call for justice?
I believe that attention to shared histories of oppression may provide part of an answer. I started a note about that, a few years ago, in my book Stayed on Freedom’s Call:
“…to the congregation. You shall not oppress the runaway slave, let alone return
him to his cruel master. So what, then, could you make of the growing tensions
over the Fugitive Slave Act, now nearly ten years in effect across the country,
including in slave-holding Washington City and County? The slave trade had
been banished in the Capital, but replaced with something perhaps worse. That
Biblical mandate for freedom must have led many in the Jewish community to
wonder what they could do, particularly given the history of persecution of Jews
even in the United States moving forward as late as 1884 with the lynching of
Leo Max Frank. Thus, shared histories led to cooperation between the two
communities in a variety of ways, at first private, and later more public. The
Jewish community grew in Washington, DC, opening shops and businesses,
mingling with working class families, colored and white, of pre-Urban Renewal
SW. With the Navy Yard as one of the very few employers in the city willing to
hire based on ability alone, both communities faced difficulty in finding jobs
and housing. The new railroad and streetcar suburbs of the 1880s and turn of
the 20 th century, advertising to “the better classes,” frequently employed racially
restrictive housing covenants barring both Jews and Negroes. These shared
burdens, combined with the complementing religious and labor roles of the two
communities, threw their lots together while preventing the rivalries seen
between colored and Irish workers, whose competition for jobs certainly
contributed to the Snow Riots of 1835, the city’s first race riot. Having similar …
So, it turns out that I might have needed to explain a bit more about some of the events, oh, and not left it up to the reader to go look up Parashat Re’eh, mentioned on this page. Some fresh reviews would help me decide that specific.
Page thirteen was last week…
1.) What are your thoughts on shared oppression as a mandate for cultural cooperation?
2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.
3.) Share your thoughts on how continuing empathy-building cooperation might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking.
4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those thoughts.
Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness, #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?
Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure & #StopSmoking at least for CCOVID-19:
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this
Peace ! שָׁלוֹם
the year, 2021 CE = year 12021 HE
Baby Acres: a Vision of a Better World (posts listed at bottom of page…)
Stayed on Freedom’s Call
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.
Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.