Jewish Is Not

A poem written by Corinne Low

Jewish is not something one picks up from Toe Fungus in fact, Jewish is not something one can catch at all... like Influenza.

Jew is not a condition... like Carpel Tunnel or an embarrassing defect... like Impotence.

Judaism is not a chromosomal defect one is afflicted with at birth... like Down's Syndrome nor is it something that happens to someone... like a Car Crash.

The Holidays are not a burden, keeping Kosher is not a prohibitive obligation, the Star of David is not a Cross we bear...

Nor shall we allow it to become a shield, to hold ourselves separate from the others with whom we share the world.

It is these subtle perceptions, rather than the outright prejudices, that Erode our culture.

It is this that keeps Jewish college students from attending services, prevents Jewish children from proudly explaining why they don't celebrate Easter, and makes Jewish adults reluctant to keep Passover.

It is how when someone wishes us a Merry Christmas and we say "Oh, actually, I'm uh...Jewish." they look at us like "Oooh, I'm sorry."

Well I'm not sorry. Screw You.

Judaism is not something I want to be pitied for. Judaism is a rich, proud history. A cultural code. A sacred identity.

Jewish is not a Box I reluctantly check. Jewish is a choice.

And, above all things, Jewish is not Shy.