a violent and exclusionary narrative

"I attended Jewish Day School for the vast majority of my schooling. It was instilled, or indoctrinated, in me that I must love Israel and never criticize or question its actions. Teachers frequently outright denied the Occupation or if they acknowledged it, excused or justified its most violent aspects in the name of the security and safety of Jews. This wasn't a rogue exercise, either; denying the occupation was ensconced in the curriculum. I even felt myself questioning the very basic humanity of Palestinians when I got home and spoke to my father about what I'd learned. I regret this, but I also realize it's a product of how the organized American Jewish community seeks to monopolize a violent and exclusionary narrative surrounding Israel. Now, I support the efforts of IfNotNow. I hope my day school is proud of what they taught me because it is the antithesis of everything I believe currently." -Ilana, Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, BBYO, Alexander Muss High School in Israel