29 Can it happen in America?
Chananya Weissman
June 25, 2020, The Jewish Press

You immediately knew what “it” is, because deep down you know we're not that far away, even if you don't want to admit it.

Fifteen years ago I was teaching social studies to fifth-graders. Fifteen years ago was a completely different era. Donald Trump was an eccentric businessman, no one had heard of Obama, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hadn't mixed her first drink. No one realized that half the products in their shopping cart were racist, let alone something that should enrage them. There were only two genders – well, there still are, but no one had to pretend otherwise to keep their job or be considered “good”. It was a better time.

I taught my students that their basic rights in America were not really guaranteed. For example, a two-thirds majority of Congress could vote that Jews are not part of mankind, and voilà, the Bill of Rights would no longer protect them. “All men are created equal” only applies to human beings, not to animals or a sub-species like Jews. Just like that, all their rights would be out the window.

It seems I overestimated what it would take for such a previously unthinkable development to become plausible. Who needs Congress to vote on anything anymore? The toxic formula of the day is strategic social media campaigns, a takeover of the education system, a compliant media relentlessly pushing propaganda, and a coordinated effort of politicians, celebrities, and activists to manipulate blindly religious followers. Changing the law is merely an afterthought; change happens forcefully on the ground, and is enshrined in law at a later time.

Diaspora Jews seem oblivious to the danger they are in. They believe the old institutions will protect them, ignoring the fact that these institutions are no longer respected. The Constitution is a piece of paper in a museum. The law is only as powerful as the will of the people to respect it, the ability of the police and justice system to enforce it, and the determination of leaders to uphold it.

All three of the above are null and void in America. The revolutionaries have successfully abolished any semblance of respect for the law, tradition, or civility. The police are under attack from all sides, and have been effectively neutered. The leaders on one side support the revolution, and the other side has failed to muster a meaningful response.

When – not if – the riots come to Jewish neighborhoods, there is nothing to stop them.

There are no longer any boundaries that are inviolable, nor any conceivable way that things will just settle down. The revolutionaries are on a roll, there is nothing stopping them, and they have no intention of stopping.

Consider the following scenario. A police officer in Atlanta is facing the death penalty for killing someone who attacked him, stole his weapon, and used it against him. This in and of itself is absurd. There are a number of ways this can turn out:

a) The officer is acquitted. Pandemonium will ensue. The police have been so demonized and the lower elements of society have been so brainwashed that even the possibility of acquittal is anathema to them. Atlanta will burn, there will be riots all over the country, and this “injustice” will become the trigger for the next steps of the revolution that are currently in the planning stages. Of course, they will be “spontaneous” when they actually occur.

b) The officer is convicted of a lesser charge and sent to prison or receives some other punishment. Now that the death penalty is on the table, anything less will enrage the mob that forever seeks pretexts to be enraged. Atlanta will burn, and there will be riots all over the country. Not only that, but in this scenario police officers all over the country will also protest the conviction of their colleague, who they will say was railroaded to appease the mob. The revolutionaries will run amok, and the police will do nothing. This has already happened, and such a scenario may mark the official end of law and order in America.

c) The officer is convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death. The revolutionaries will celebrate their victory, fueling their insatiable appetite for more such victories and more “social changes”, which will include more riots and burnings. Police will turn in their badges en masse, and the streets will be ruled by gangs, vigilantes, and private security, as is the case in third world countries. This outcome seems inevitable at this point anyway, but a death sentence will make it a reality almost instantly.

d) The officer is sentenced to death and receives a Presidential pardon. The pandemonium and riots will be just as bad as if the officer received an acquittal, and the revolutionaries will use this as the fuel for their next steps. Police around the country will still quit over the railroading of their colleague, and the breakdown in law and order will reach the same destination from a slightly different trajectory.

There is no scenario in which this turns out well, the revolutionaries stop breaking boundaries, law and order is restored long-term, and Humpty Dumpty is put back together again. If you are a Jew who feels secure in America right now, I invite you to present your case and argue why people should believe in it. But I caution you: this is not a theoretical Talmudic discussion. This is real life. Your life.

This brings us back to the original question: Can it happen in America? Of course it can. The pillars of American society are being torn down and burned all around you. Those who cherish these pillars are disorganized, confused, and backpedaling. Eventually they will probably gather themselves and form their own mobs to push back, but either way it's going to get very ugly.

You may feel secure that the average American has strong moral underpinnings, and therefore “it” is still unthinkable. Think again. The average American, much like the average German or Pole, is not going to risk himself and his family to hide you or protect you. You don't need an entire society to hate the Jews for the Jews to be in mortal danger. You need a critical mass of people who hate the Jews, a breakdown in the institutions that uphold the higher values of the society, and sufficient fear among the rest to stand in their way.

This is the situation right now, today, in America.

When the revolutionaries come to Jewtown, USA to spread some equality and justice, the police are not going to shoot them. Your gentile neighbors, who may have already kneeled and kissed the feet of some of these people, are going to think about their job and their family. They might not hate you – they might even think you're okay – but they are not going to sacrifice everything for you when the tidal waves come crashing down.

Tell me why this can't happen. Tell me why this won't happen. Because people are intrinsically good? Because you have good relationships with your neighbors? Because you made some show of solidarity with the revolutionaries? Because THIS IS AMERICA AND IT CAN'T HAPPEN HERE?

History is repeating itself one last time. Social unrest, economic hardship, political upheaval, a breakdown in law and order, and hate-filled tribalism have never turned out well for the Jews. Literally every single time this happened over two thousand years, the Jews got it wrong, and they paid dearly. Maybe this is the time we finally do a tikkun and get it right.

The time to make a five-year plan ended five years ago. Now is the moment of truth. America is tearing down its history, and you need to learn from yours.

You have a place to go where you will be warmly welcomed by your own people, no matter what stripe of Jew you are, where there will always be a place for you, where your neighbors will share your past and your future, where they will sacrifice for you and fight for you because they are your own family.

There's plenty of open land waiting for you. Now is the time.