Photo: Motti Kimchi
Superland amusement park. Arab students denied entry on certain days
Photo: Motti Kimchi
Lucy Aharish
Photo: Anat Mosberg

Racist land

Op-ed: Segregation between Arab, Jewish kids not surprising in country which has racism flowing through its veins

The headlines cry out, "Racism." The Arabs shout, "Apartheid." The Jews respond, "It's only a handful." And the majority click their tongues and complain. Are you surprised by what happened at the Superland? Really?! Because I was really not surprised. And no, not because I'm an Arab, but because I'm a concerned Israeli citizen in a country which refuses to admit that racism is already flowing through its veins and in the educational values it instills to its children.


When Arabic became the language only Avigdor Lieberman understands. When the word "Arab" turned into a swearword. When people here still ask me, "Are you Arab or Christian?" When people here say the immortal sentence, "Ibrahim is not Arab – he's a Druze" – and yet they still won't let him into the nightclub because of his "Arab" name.


When things look like that, I'm not surprised that Miss Galit, the telephone operator from the Superland, her managers and people like them are brainwashed with stereotypes about what is and who is an Arab.


But forget about Arabs and Jews. Let me ask you again: Are you really surprised? Are you so surprised by the discrimination against Arabs at the entrance to an amusement park, in a country where people spit on a seven-year-old girl on the street for being "immodest"? In a country where Ethiopians are prevented from applying for a school because of the color of their skin? In a country which deports children of foreign workers who come here to care for our aging parents because we don't have time, and now they're the foreigners taking our jobs? In the state of the Jews who were persecuted in the Diaspora, and by the time they reached the Promised Land to unite – they're separating themselves from themselves with definitions of Mizrahi and Ashkenazi?


So no, I am not surprised. A country engaged in a battle with itself will never be able to reach an understanding with the other. And don't think that we in the Arab sector are perfect. We're not, not at all. But that's a subject for a different column.  



פרסום ראשון: 06.01.13, 10:21
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