"I went to Jewish day school from pre-school until 8th grade. In that time Israel was presented in one light- this golden, pure land that was our home. From the young age of 4 we learned tons of songs praising the state. We sang Hatikvah every single morning. We learned the history of Israel every year, posters covering the walls reminding us to love the state, exalting it as the utopia we perceived it to be. I had a rough time at the school, but I stuck around because I knew in 8th grade we would go to the holy land, Israel. We spent 8th grade building up for that, learning the "history" in depth. I remember learning about how Palestinian children are brainwashed to hate Jews as small children and I didn't realize my institution was doing the same thing that they preached against. I remember being taught that Palestine didn't even exist, people laughing at the thought. I remember the fear of the Holocaust, the fear of the pogroms, the fear of the history of the Jewish people being ingrained into our minds and hearts from Kindergarten onward. I remember the understanding that Israel was the solution. We didn't heal, we were just taught to fear, and we were taught to use Israel to cope. I remember finally going to Israel at the age of 14 and feeling like I discovered utopia. I had no idea the cost of the utopia that was delivered to us. All of that and I don't remember once hearing the word occupation." -Davis Academy alum