All this speaks volumes today, on the heels of the massacre of the Jews in the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. I am dismayed at the number of people who are furious at President Trump for saying that maybe there should have been some armed security at the synagogue. They remind me of the Jews who quietly climbed onto the trains and went quietly to the death camps. No doubt they are a majority in Jewish communities throughout the diaspora, as they were in the early and mid-twentieth century. Despite the clear evidence—Jewish cadavers—they want to insist that weapons don’t belong in our houses of worship. Yet we should have learned one of the lessons of the Holocaust, namely that we must defend ourselves, and fight our enemies.
All people are not the same, and all people are assuredly not good. Yet today I understand, more than ever, how hard it is for the intended victims of evil to face these unpleasant facts and act accordingly.
I worship at “the national synagogue” in Washington, D.C., which has a very active rabbi and a congregation including numerous luminaries. It is therefore an obvious target for Jew haters, yet it took years to convince the synagogue’s officials to install minimal security, and offers to create a gun club so that our congregants can learn to use weapons have so far gone without any positive response. I have long urged Jews to apply for concealed carry permits, but I doubt there are more than a tiny handful who have done it.