Sunday, September 4, 2005

#139 Words are Power

September 4, 2005
Rosh Chodesh Ellul, the 30th of Menachem Av


Yes, they are. According to Chazal, our sages, it's the power of speech that distinguishes us from the animals. So each word we choose to use has ramifications, which is why I've gotten so upset over Yad Veshem's use of the word "perish" to describe what happened to the Jewish communities of Europe during the Holocaust.

According to Pirkei Avot, Ethics of the Fathers, 4th Chapter, 1st Lesson: Ben Zoma said: "Who is wise? He who learns from every single one."

And so, I have decided to change my word usage that describes those forcefully, even if they left on their own two feet or a week before, removed from their homes due to Disengagement. I was calling them "refugees," but that term doesn't cover the few who arranged for and even bought or already owned other homes. Neither technically nor linguistically are they refugees, nor are they homeless.

I noticed a very good, strong word used repeatedly in the articles about Katrina, the hurricane that has turned part of the Southern U.S.A. into a massive disaster area, killing more than seems possible in this day and age. It will take another few weeks for an accurate number. Alive or dead, there are hundreds of thousands of victims if not millions.

And from now on, "victims" is the word I will use to describe the former residents of Gush Katif and the Northern Shomron.

That word can also be used for the students who were in the various educational institutions there, which even if transplanted to another location, will never be the same. They are all victims.

I presume at some point some of the soldiers and police who were strongly affected by the orders they were given will also consider themselves victims. A major part of their training was to condition them to disengage from the residents and demonstrators. This technique may have helped some of them follow the dastardly orders, but emotional disengagement is the cause of many social, emotional and family problems. They and their loved ones are also victims.

And of course the demonstrators, who tried so hard to stop Disengagement, whether jailed or not, are suffering from the traumas they experienced. They are all victims.

The family and friends who intimately felt the pain and trauma of those who were forcefully, without any choice, transferred from their homes. They are also victims.

Businesses around the world that marketed products from Gush Katif and made legitimate profits from them are now unable to trade what is no longer being produced. They, too, are victims.

Also, ordinary Israelis and vegetable eaters all over the world are paying more, if they can find the same quality of salad greens and other agricultural products, for what they had previously bought from Gush Katif. They are also victims.

Everyone whose life was upset and changed by Disengagement is a victim.
And now, due to Disengagement, more Israeli civilians, cities and power stations are in the range of terrorist rockets. Terrorist activity is also increasing as a result of Disengagement, making more potential victims.

You can easily add more examples. This country has been victimized by crooked politicians. We must throw them out of office. We must elect strong moral people to save our country.

Shavua Tov and Chodesh Tov, and
May We Have a Shana Tova and
Geulah Shleimah B'mherah B'Yameinu,
Full Redemption, Quickly in Our Day

Batya Medad, Shiloh
Copyright©2005BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.
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Smooth said...

That's an excellent idea, to use the word 'victims'. That's the same tactic arafat, may his name be erased, employed when he started his Horse and Pony show in 1964: he invented words, like "Palestinian" and "Palestine",and hooked those words so efficiently into the minds of the global community, that they are now part of the fabric of the greatest lie ever told.

Batya said...

Thanks, we should never be ashamed to tell the truth.

Marcel said...

In this day of rapid decsent into darkness and coufusion by the hands of the new babel builders and their media,it's good to anchor ourselves in correct terminology.
A question that must be asked.
Who is the chief victimizer in this situation ?
The chief engineer of the peace plan has many,many more Jews to victimize for his plan,and many follow the agenda of the man and his false peace for Israel.
Calamity approaches because Israel will not disengage from the Road Map ,the covenant with death and hell that will bring both in large numbers to Israel.It's elementary to see the outcome of Israel's foolish investment in lies and false agreements. All we have to do is look east to Iraq to see the fruit of this man of peace . I'm amazes that Israel's leaders continue to buy into this hell of false peace from the phony messiah of peace.

Serena said...

I have to disagree. To call someone a victim makes them less able to deal with the situation. It makes them look to someone else to fix the problem. This is not a good thing to do. They are survivors. The victims of Hurricane Katrina are dead, the survivors live. They need to be given hope and help and inspired to persevere in life. They do not need to be told they are victims and to look to government to "save" them.

The people of Gush Katif are survivors. That is why they lived there. Please don't turn them into victims, just inspire them to continue to be survivors. Survivors are the foundation of the modern nation of Israel. These people need to be praised for their survival skills and then to be encouraged in these days of darkness for them that they will again survive and overcome.

Batya said...

Serena, I think that you have a good point, except that one can be both a victim and a survivor.

Only the Arabs think that refugees are permanent.

A survivor is one who overcomes his difficulties, and when the residents of Gush Katif walked on on their own two feet, they showed that they're survivors, but they are still victims.

Serena said...

I know, to us they are victims, and they are. I wept and sobbed as they were taken from their homes as I prayed for them. The thing is we don't need to encourage them in a victim mentality. That will defeat them. I think that is what I was trying to say. The "victims" in NO after the hurricane have been trained in that mentality for generations now and look what it resulted in. I want to encourage G-d's people to persevere and to be overcomers.
May He richly bless you!
Love and shalom,