Letter to the editor: Zionism is not racism
Thu Aug 13 2015
In response to yesterday's misguided op-ed titled "Spar's presence at SJP event raises questions," a number of anonymous commentators argued that Zionism amounts to racism. But anger is no excuse for ignorance. This sentiment is not new to discourse inside or outside our community, but it is ahistorical, misinformed, and bigoted.
Zionism can most concisely be defined as the late 19th- and early 20th-century movement to establish a Jewish homeland in the land of Palestine. But the meaning of Zionism has been open to much interpretation—not unlike the ambiguity of the idea of a Jewish "homeland" itself. To be sure, there were many early political Zionists who considered the Jews superior to the Arab natives of the land. But there were also many prominent Zionists—indeed, whole strains of Zionism—who believed something very different....