Someone in America wrote to me asking if it were OK for Jews to celebrate the 4th of July?
“Celebrate?” I replied. “As a fast day and day of mourning, yes. Buy if you mean to celebrate the day with joy - why would any Jew want to do that? After all, intermarriage is continuing to skyrocket at an unstoppable rate leading to the extinction of millions of Jews. Surveys show that a majority of American Jews have no connection to Jewish identity. Furthermore, the Administration in Washington wants to divide Jerusalem in half, give away the biblical heartland of Israel to the Arabs, and it has allowed Iran to proceed toward developing a nuclear bomb which they threaten they will launch against the State of Israel. What is there to celebrate in that?”
Sorry. I know there are readers out there who don’t like it when I come across as a fanatic. Therefore, to all of the Jews in America, if you want to drink beer and eat hot dogs on the Fourth of July because America has been good to the Jews, then drink your Budweisers and eat your hot dogs. But after you finish your meal and thank G-d for the food and the land, don’t confuse matters and think that the land in the Birkat HaMazone blessing is referring to America.
The Torah commands a Jew to praise G-d for having given him the Land of Israel, not the United States of America. In formulating the blessing, our Sages wanted a Jew to remember that Jerusalem is the center of Jewish life, not Washington D.C. or New York. We pray for the building of Israel not America. Go ahead and eat your hot dogs if they are kosher. Drink your beer. But don’t think that the Fourth of July is Independence Day. For a Jew, Independence Day is Yom Haatzmaut – Israel Independence Day.
Remember, my Diaspora friend, your forefathers were Israelis. Abraham is the founder of your nation not George Washington. You should be saluting the Star of David, not the Stars and Stripes. Remember that you are only in America temporarily because of the curse of exile, just like we were in Spain and Germany and Russia throughout our long wanderings. In those places too we enjoyed the good life for a hundred or two-hundred years until the Gentiles reminded us that we didn’t belong in their land.
Perhaps you were born in America, but it isn’t your real home. If you don’t like to face that then soon your Woke neighbors will force you to. So take heed. When a baseball sails into the bleachers for a game-winning grand slam, the American cheering next to you may flash you a happy smile, but chances are that he hates you for being stranger in his land.
So have a happy Fourth of July if you like. But don’t pretend it is Independence Day for you. If you are a Jew, the “land of the free and the home of the brave” is in Israel.
Hope to see you here soon.