In response to HR’s communique yesterday, Ithaca Journal contributor Sandy Wold sends a sincere letter of remorse:
‘As you probably know, I have received dozens of emails from members of your organization from all over the country and the U.K. in the past few days. I was truly surprised by your response. My goal was to write a column that would be noninflammatory, and clearly I was not.
‘Having read your emails and having spoken with many Jewish friends of mine, who have lived in Israel, were born in Israel, and/or know a lot more about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict than I do, I have learned much and better understand why you all are so upset with me.
‘I sincerely apologize for my lack of sensitivity to and inclusiveness of your group’s perspective and experience in my article.
Wold’s apology is welcome, and to her credit.
But Wold’s admission that she was previously uninformed on the realities of the conflict underscores our central point from this communique — that the demonization of Israel has seeped into entire communities that would otherwise have no particular interest in this corner of the world. Israel has become an accepted symbol of human evil, to be drawn from one’s pocket as an apparent enemy of human progress and transcendent spiritual goodness.
That’s the larger issue that, unfortunately, remains very much with us.