Like the other 170,000 J Street supporters across the country, I love Israel with all my heart and want to see it flourish. I act on this love through supporting a ‘just’ Israel: an Israel that truly pursues peace with its neighbors; an Israel that grants its minorities full and equal rights, in practice as well as in name; an Israel that allows for the creation of a viable and independent Palestinian state alongside it – the only way to secure Israel’s own Jewish, democratic future.
Part of being pro-Israel means speaking up on policies that run counter to the Jewish values upon which Israel was founded (justice, peace, and equality) and do not advance the prospects for two states. I believe that it is our right and our responsibility to speak up against policies that are detrimental to Israel’s future and that further alienate young American Jews who refuse to choose between their Jewish values and their relationship with Israel. Birthright is making a profound mistake by denying students a place where they can bring together their commitment to Israel and their commitment to their values of social justice, equality, and democracy.
For too long, the loudest voices that spoke on behalf of our community did not speak for me. I invite you to join me in reclaiming what it means to be pro-Israel, and stand for an Israel and a Jewish community that lives up to the best of our traditions.
President, J Street U at UCLA
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