May 17, 2007
(Page 2 - Previous Page)Jewish groups have generally not warmed to Weinstein's rhetoric or techniques. The evangelical community makes up a large and dependable source of support for Israel -- thousands of evangelicals are due to rally for Israel in Los Angeles this week -- and there's a general reluctance to antagonize it. Even the Rev. Jerry Falwell, who died this past Tuesday, got a pass from Jews for some of his more outrageous remarks in light of his stalwart support of Israel.
But Weinstein -- surprise -- won't be silenced.
"Eli Weisel told me his definition of anti-Semitism: Jewish inaction in the face of oppression," Weinstein said. "Jews have a moral responsibility to accept the fact that we are the miner's canary for the community we live in."
During our conversation, Weinstein's cellphone beeped constantly. There were calls from Jewish and non-Jewish military personnel complaining about proselytizing. And there was a hate-filled e-mail attacking Weinstein as a "whining Jew."
I watched him scroll his messages and realized that to be a Jew today is to stand between twin fanaticisms.
On the one side are some Muslims who want to kill all those who don't doesn't share their exact beliefs.
On the other side are some Christians who want to force their exact beliefs on others. And there is no doubt that some of those same Christians are our friends and, in uniform, our protectors.
But Weinstein would argue that our true protector is the U.S. Constitution. And he doesn't care how many enemies he makes in his fight to defend it.
"I'll e-mail that guy back," Weinstein said of the hate-mailer. "I'll say, 'Motherf-----, why don't you pack a picnic lunch and stand in line?'"
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