Dating or Not Dating Jewish: How Israelis Answered

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I happened on this tweet tonight from the Jewish Forward:Would you date non-Jews? The tweet was that simple, with a link to a  video interview of secular Israelis who responded to the question.

What was interesting to me was not the specific yes or no answers, but the hedging that went on from a number of respondents in trying to answer the question. The same type of wavering I’ve seen when asking the identical question of American teens. In this video, the discomfort is evident at having to decide how to respond appropriately (read politically correctly) to such a a question.

Some answer with qualifiers: “Well, it’s not that I have anything against anyone not Jewish….” “I don’t think it will be a problem….” but most agree that it wouldn’t be an issue. When asked about marrying Arabs, well, I’ll let you check out the video for yourself to find out those answers. 

Bottom line: there seems to be such discomfort in choosing, strongly choosing, to identify Jewishly, and selecting a mate who is also Jewish. Choosing doesn’t mean disparaging another, yet that is often how the question is taken. 

By the way, the videographer makes no judgement about the responses, but asks clarifying questions. This could be a great trigger for an interesting class discussion. 

About Ruth Schapira

As a Jewish educator my hope is to broaden opportunities for Jewish education and through this blog, perhaps spur new ideas. If reading any post inspires you to hold new conversations and motivate change within the Jewish community, that would make me very happy. I'm interested in making a difference. View all posts by Ruth Schapira

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