Wednesday, December 23, 2015

It's Past Time To Stop Singing About Revenge!

Sadly, it's time to revisit a subject I first wrote about in 2003 in this post, "Radical Jewish Music (Not by John Zorn)"

The following Times of Israel article, "Clip Shows Far-Right Wedding-Goers Celebrating Duma Killings", went viral today. I encourage all of you, difficult as it will be, to watch the clip embedded there.

Here's a glimpse:
Footage released on Wednesday showed dozens of young Israeli right-wing extremists, said to be linked to the suspected perpetrators of the Dawabsha family murder, celebrating the killing at a wedding last week. 
The images in the clip immediately sparked wide condemnation. The video, aired by Channel 10, shows revelers at the Jerusalem celebration waving knives, rifles, pistols and a Molotov cocktail during the wedding. Amid the festivities, a photo of baby Ali Dawabsha, who was burned to death in the July 31 firebombing in the West Bank village of Duma, is shown being repeatedly stabbed, according to the report. 
The crowd in the video chants the lyrics of a song which include a verse from Judges 16:28, quoting Samson, blinded in Gaza, saying “let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes” — but changing the word Philistines to Palestine. 
The couple whose wedding was being celebrated was said to be friends of Jewish extremists detained in connection with the firebombing attack.
The song they are referring to is Dov Shurin's "Zochreini Na", and it is very clear from the clip as to how it is taken by that community. And, no, that clip doesn't reflect on everyone from that community, but there is clearly a critical mass that is comfortable singing about killing babies, even when it's not an abstract concept. As you'll see, they're doing it while waving a pic of a one year old that was burned to death, and then stabbing the picture too.

This scene should trouble all moral people, no matter their political viewpoint with regard to settlements, land for peace, etc. And, I think it behooves the Jewish music community to stop playing that song. Previously, my policy has been that I won't call it on a job, but if it was a request, I'd do it. At this point, I feel like a stronger stance needs to be taken. We need to stop playing this song, and to actively speak out against this kind of thing. This is my protest! Where's yours?