Dr. Berel Dov LernerThe writer is associate professor of philosophy at the Western Galilee College in Akko and a member of Kibbutz Sheluhot.
Jewish students at Persia's elite Shushan University voted yesterday in favor of proposed policy changes that would allow supporters of Haman's controversial DME (Destroy, Massacre, and Exterminate) movement to speak at official Hillel House programs.
Haman the Aggagite facilitated full participation in the vote by personally supplying Hillel with a complete list of of the university's Jewish students.
Brad Malshin, the acting president of Shushan's Jewish-Aggagite Alliance praised the decision, calling it "a victory for democracy and a victory for Jewish inclusiveness." He also thanked Haman the Aggagite for having facilitated full participation in the vote by personally supplying Hillel with a complete list of of the university's Jewish students.
"Haman's action once again demonstrates the progressive nature of the DME movement. In a Jewish world still rampant with ageism and sexism, Haman leads the way towards a more inclusive take on Judaism, one which places 'All the Jews, young and old, children and women' on an equal footing."
Nancy Mosseret, a Jewish freshman at Shushan University and self-styled DME activist, was also enthusiastic about Haman's progressive views. She said these are reflected in his personal life, "Zeresh is not only Haman's wife and life-partner, she is also his number one political advisor. After all, Haman credits Zeresh with the idea of building gallows to hang Mordechai. When Ahasuereus hired Haman as a minister in his government, it was a real 'buy-one-and-get-one-for-free' deal."
We asked Mosseret about critics of DME who claimed the movement was harming Jewish interests and had no place in the campus Hillel. "I claim the right to speak as a Jew in a Jewish setting," she insisted. "As the grand-daughter of a survivor of the destruction of Judah I cannot be silenced. In fact, that historical calamity stands at the foundations of my political outlook as a Jew. For hundreds of years Jews have suffered repeated persecutions and defeats, and after the fact our prophets have always openly said that these were well-deserved punishments.
"The whole point of DME is to take the Jewish prophetic tradition a further step forward. This time, instead of merely taking the blame for persecution after it occurs, we will actively promote the persecution itself. This activism reflects the inner core of my Judaism."
Shushan - capital of Persia, where the Purim story took place
Aggagite-family of Haman
Malshin, mosseret - Hebrew terms for informers.