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THE STAR OF DAVID THAT MARKED MY FATHER'S GRAVE IN OKINAWA

Reader comment on: The Second Mutation: Israel and Political Anti-Semitism

Submitted by Carole Silverman (United States), Apr 1, 2009 20:54

While I was growing up, the picture of the Star of David that marked my father's grave in Okinawa was the only link I had with my Jewish roots. Since I was raised in Christian Science, I didn't know anything about being Jewish. Since I was seven years old when I lost my father, I never forgot him and didn't want the Star of David surrounded by rows and rows of crosses to go to waste. On the other hand, my brother, who was only two years old when we lost our father, doesn't have any memories of the father that he lost. My mother made sure that my brother knew that our father was a war hero who gave his life for the USA, but she didn't do anything about teaching him about the Jewish people. Since my father's medals were framed on the walls in my brother's room, he is proud that our father gave his life for the USA, which is supposed to be the land of the free and the home of the brave. Since the only Jewish thing that my mother could do was to buy a crypt in a Jewish cemetery, my brother didn't even know that our mother was Jewish, which is why I wasn't able to stop my brother from marrying into an anti-Semitic family right after our mother passed away. My brother's children were raised in the 7th Day Adventist Church while my brother had to keep his mouth shut (I warned him that he would have to keep his mouth shut before he got married). I did have two nephews and one niece; but because one nephew turned to alcohol, I now only have one nephew and one niece. I have to mention that the 7th Day Adventist Church didn't help any of my brother's three children. My niece's first husband has a Jewish husband; and even though they managed to have a daughter together, they are now divorced. My niece joined e-Harmony and met her 2nd husband. They were married in a Fundamental church last year in March. Now my niece has three stepchildren from her 2nd husband's first marriage. My nephew also went through a very emotional divorce after having two little sons, and now he's very bipolar because he's really a writer who should never have gotten married in the first place. I knew that my nephew was smart as a little boy when he asked me the following question on the way home from the 7th Day Adventist Church: "Aunt Carole, is it possible to be Jewish & Christian at the same time?" I wasn't able to answer his question then because we were supposed to talk about religion. I told him to learn all about his religion, & we'd talk about it when he grew up. When he grew up, we did talk about it; but since his mother pushed him into a bad marriage, now he's too bipolar (and anti-Semitic on top of it because of his mother's family). It's very sad that my father gave his life for the USA as a proud Jewish American war hero, but now his grandson is anti-Semitic. I would like to add that my father didn't join the Navy to be a war hero. He joined the Navy to practice medicine because he wasn't able to finish medical school after I was born (I was a surprise package). If my father would have survived the war, he would have gone back to school on the G.I. Bill and would have become a doctor. I know that if my father would have come back, my nephew wouldn't have been anti-Semitic because they would have had a lot in common. In fact, my brother wouldn't have been part of an anti-Semitic family if he would have known our father. Unfortunately, my mother had enough to worry about without being Jewish; and since a Christmas card customer told my mother while she was trying to make a sale that Hitler should have gotten the rest of them, I'm trying to do what my mother wasn't able to do. Since my mother could have passed for Irish and used the name of Rutledge to sell Christmas cards, her customer didn't know that she was Jewish. My mother didn't open her mouth because it was more important for her to make a sale due to the fact that she had two kids to feed. I've also suffered from anti-Semitism even though I wasn't raised Jewish, but now I call myself a Born Again Jew because I've come back to my roots. I have a very long book to write about my journey, but I'll need help with writing it because it's very complicated. In closing, I would like to mention that while First Lady Rosalynn Carter was in the White House, I wrote her a letter; and she quoted from my letter in her book. While I was reading Mrs. Carter's book in my living room, I found myself reading my words in her book. I was referred to as a Culver City, CA housewife, but I would like to come out of the closet. With the help of the right people, I would like to make this world a better place for the Jewish people. I have relatives in the USA who are passing for WASPS because they don't want anyone to know that they are Jewish - that isn't the kind of sacrifice that my father would have wanted. I also wrote a poem on a piece of scratch paper titled "LET'S BE BROTHERS." I still have the original poem and that poem found it's way into the Hollywood Citizen-News in a column titled "AMERICA IS STILL WONDERFUL" The words in my poem were compared to the words of General David Sarnoff, board chairman of Radio Corporation of America (RCA). A women who was a member of the Women Strike for Peace didn't like it that I was compared to a general because generals are hawks and the Women Strike for Peace were the doves who were against the Vietnam war. I also don't like war, but sometimes we need hawks to protect us. I considered myself a dove who wants peace; and since I'm a starving writer, I'm also a poor dove. The words of a poor dove were compared to the words of a rich hawk, and now I want to know what we have in common. The only way I will find out is to get the help I need to write a book that will make the whole world laugh and cry at the same time - I want to make the whole world bipolar - like I am and like my nephew who is more of a bipolar writer than I am.


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Other reader comments on this item

TitleByDate

⇒ THE STAR OF DAVID THAT MARKED MY FATHER'S GRAVE IN OKINAWA [1137 words]

Carole Silverman 

Apr 1, 2009 20:54

Speak Out [206 words]

Regan MacBannon 

Feb 18, 2009 18:03

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Note: Comments are screened, and in some cases edited, before posting. This site reserves the right to reject anything found to be objectionable.

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