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Rabbi's Week In Review - 11/22/2022

11/22/2022 10:30:45 AM

Nov22

I am heartsick and outraged by the murder of five people and injury to 19 by a hateful, immoral tyrant at the LGBTQ+ nightclub, Club Q, in Colorado Springs. I, as rabbi, and we at Congregation Kol Ami stand in love with our queer Jewish family and everyone in the queer community.  

Sadly, this is the inevitable result of all of the hate speech directed toward the queer community by many leaders in the Republican party. Banning books from schools about LGBTQ+ kids, armed supremacists standing outside queer clubs to intimidate and scare patrons, and using the persistent lie about our kids being groomed give license to inflict violence on the queer community. All this, not to mention anti-gay and anti-trans state legislation as well as U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert, from Colorado, who demonized drag queens and drag clubs, and Tucker Carlson.

I would be remiss if I did not point out that the assault weapon used in the Club Q killings would never have landed in the killer’s hands in any other county in Colorado. There is a statewide red-flag law, which would have prevented the killer from ever owning a gun.  However, the county that includes Colorado Springs declared itself a Second Amendment sanctuary, in which the Colorado red-flag law would not be enforced.

As I said in my sermon during a Shabbat last spring celebrating the first anniversary of Ga’avah KC, there is no separation between those who foist hate and violence on the queer community and those who target Jews for their animus. The speech I gave in 2016 at the vigil here in Kansas City for the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting was a speech I had hoped never to have to give again. I still have that hope.  

Yet I also know that we — as compassionate people who see everyone as having been created in G-d’s image — have much to do in ridding baseless hate and cruelty from our midst. We must call out those who traffic in this hate — the politicians who use hate to divide us, to play on people's worst instincts of fear — solely out of a desire to satisfy their greed for more power.

As we do so, we say to all of our friends in the queer community: You are loved.

Sun, November 27 2022 3 Kislev 5783