Our tradition teaches us that there is more than one way to kill a human being.  One way is to literally spill someone’s blood.  This was the (attempted) way of Haman, who we will read about several days from now on Purim.

Another way is to publicly shame a person. Unfortunately, some Israeli government officials have made publicly assaulting Reform Jews quite a habit.

The latest bully is David Azoulay, Israel’s Minister of Religious Affairs. During the past several weeks, Azoulay has called Reform Jews “a disaster for the people of Israel,” and has said that Reform Jews “must not be given a foothold among the people of Israel.”  He has had some choice words for Reform Jews in the Diaspora too:  “With all due respect to their Zionism and support for the State of Israel, we won’t allow them to control us remotely or damage the country’s Jewish character.”

Azoulay seems to have forgotten that he is not the Minister of ultra-Orthodox Religious Services.  He is the Minister of Religious Services for all Jews in Israel.  His actions demonstrate ignorance about Jewish beliefs held dear by millions of Jews around the world. 

Please take a minute to email David Azoulay and demand an apology for his embarrassing comments.  Then go to IRAC’s Facebook page and share a story or a picture about a special moment in your life as a Reform Jew.  We will send your comments and pictures to Azoulay to combat his ignorance and show him that the lives of Reform Jews are holy and deserving of respect.

Together let’s remind Minister Azoulay that Purim is coming. If he needs to release some frustration, he should leave Reform Jews alone and buy a bigger gragger instead. 

Anat Hoffman