We live in a sound bite, news junkie generation in which we are constantly bombarded with information and updates. The positive of this culture is our access to current events in real time and our acute awareness of happenings around the world as they unfold. The negative of the short news cycle generation is how quickly we move on and forget events and tragedies that while they happened we claimed affected us so deeply and profoundly.
When that animal terrorist attacked Itamar and murdered many members of the Fogel family, memorials were held, monies were raised and the statement that we will never abandon the surviving Fogel children was pledged. But in truth, the Fogels became yesterday’s tragedy and now the Jewish community, perhaps correctly so, is obsessed with the murder of Leiby Kletzky. Projects have been initiated in his memory, funds are being collected on his family’s behalf and a baby was even named for him this week. But how long will it take until the Jewish community forgets about the Kletzkys and moves on to the next crisis, emergency or tragedy?
As the three weeks have begun, we would do well to remember that a commitment to unity, an effort to be part of one big close knit Jewish people, means never forgetting or moving on from both those that have caught our nation’s attention and those that suffer in anonymity.
Over five years ago, a young soldier, Gilad Shalit was taken captive by our evil enemy dedicated to our destruction. One shudders to think under what conditions Hamas is housing Gilad. We said then we won’t rest until he is home and yet, here we are over five years later with no meaningful progress made.
This week, my family and I visited with Gilad Shalit’s father, Noam, outside the Prime Minister’s residence where he sits in vigil for his son. Though only the return of his son will bring true comfort, our goal was to communicate that a synagogue in Florida has not stopped thinking of Gilad and his plight.
May we merit a time in which we only share good news and move from one happy event to another.
Shabbat Shalom from the Holy Land