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Little Things, Big Impact: Senseless Speech; Sensational Results

Liba Lauffer

Little things often spark momentous happenings — like a small jug with enough oil to last just one day. A collection of true-life events.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

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jugI was crossing the road when I remembered the lecture. But by now, it was 20 minutes after the commencement time; was it worth attending? Not that it was anything obligatory, but the subject title did sound intriguing: “History as a Weapon.” What could that mean? I backtracked to the crowded college lecture hall and slipped into a seat in one of the back rows.

There was a black man on stage* wearing a red sweatshirt emblazoned with the slogan: Ready for the Revolution. What revolution is he ready for? I wondered.

When I entered the hall, the man was deep in the middle of passionately expounding on his ideology, and I didn’t quite get what he was ranting about. I did catch one word, though: Jew. He was speaking against the Jews. I felt singled out, but at least I understood the word. I was a Jew. At home we lit Chanukah candles, ate matzoh, heard the shofar. I had even starved on Yom Kippur.

Next up wasIsrael. Well, I knew there was a Jewish country with that name somewhere in theMiddle East. I wasn’t sure if it was spelledIsraelor Is-real, but it was such a far-off land that either spelling seemed acceptable.

Then on to Zionism. I had never heard that word before. But every time it spewed forth from his mouth I felt a stab. It must also mean Jew, I decided, and he’s talking about me. 

“Moses was black.” Not in any Bible pictures I had ever seen, but did that mean anything?

“Judaism is a stolen African ideology.” That cut deeply. I knew he was wrong, but I didn’t have the education to understand why.


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