The court gave him back his teaching certificate. What did the students give him?
Meir Baruchin was fired from his teaching job in Rishon LeZion, and then fired again from his job at a school in Petach Tikva. The court said he could go back to the classroom. That announcement quite demoralized me.
How students greeted him upon his arrival the first day he was back lifted my spirits:
On 9 November 2023, shortly after his arrest, Meir Baruchin uploaded a tape in which he explains what he was arrested for: sedition, intention to commit an act of treason, and obstruct the public order. His teaching certificate was suspended, preventing him from teaching anywhere in the country so that he will not pop up in some other school as he did after having been fired in 2020.
I find it “interesting” that he says that his purpose in the posts that got him fired was to familiarize Israelis with individual Gazans, to humanize them, he says, and to help Israelis communicate with innocent Gazans in nonviolent ways. This was 5 days before announcement of Hamas’ murder of Vivian Silver, an activist who very much humanized the Gazans — but Baruchin cannot claim to not know that the Gazans whose humanity he wants us to acknowledge did not care if the Israelis they raped, beheaded, burned, abducted, etc. were Jews or Moslems, leftist or right wing, religious or secular. They made no distinctions at all in their murderous torturous rampage on Oct 7th.
Like Batya Holin, some Israelis in the Gaza Envelope communities who had established what they thought were sincere friendships with nearby Gazans, had their eyes opened on Oct 7th and concluded that there are no innocent Gazans. While I do acknowledge that there are likely some Gazans who do not want to kill us, it seems most do. Regardless of the fact that some Israelis do to try to help them better their lives.Therefore, I would find at least ambivalence to be a most reasonable response to the shock to their of what Gazans on Oct 7th.
However, there are those who have not budged from their hardlined stance that it is Israel at fault for their Jew hatred. They have the right to hold that opinion. But it is quite arrogant of Meir Baruchin to suggest that he needs to educate the rest of us on values and humanity. I would like to see him hired by a Gazan school to educate THEM about humanizing US. He might last longer Juliano Mer-Khamis, Israeli-Palestinian (mother Jewish, father Christian identifying as Palestinian) founder of the Freedom Theatre for Jenin youth, who was murdered in Jenin in 2011 by an unknown masked Palestinian.
On 21 January, the first day he went back to teaching, he was videotaped on DemocratTV defending his way of challenging his students. He stated that he attempts to challenge his students in discussion of things that they — or some of them — would find hard to hear or see. For example, showing them a videoclip of Haredim burning the Israeli flag on Independence Day. He would then ask them whether or not this falls under the category of “freedom of speech.” His purpose is to show that freedom of speech includes allowing people to say what is intolerable to some.
Really, Baruchin? Do you put this in the same category as justifying the slaughter, torture, and abductions the Gazans perpetrated against us?
Feature Image is a screenshot from a video shared on social media used in accordance with Section 27א of the Copyright Law in Israel.