Reuters recently reported that an Egyptian Judoka refused to shake hands with his Israeli opponent after a match at the Olympics in Rio.
It’s all the more sad because there were so many supporters on El Shehaby who encouraged him not to participate, because it would “shame Islam;” this is the pinnacle of resistance, resentment, and revenge, the zenith (or nadir, looked at another way) of stupidity. The Olympics is about building bridges, not about being a pettish douche. And this goes for anyone who does such things – El Shahaby is only the teacher in the moment.
In 1969, Bobby Darin wrote:
Now no doubt some folks enjoy doin’ battle
Like presidents and ministers and kings
But let us build them shelves where they can fight among themselves
and leave the people be who like to sing! (Simple Song of Freedom)
I invite all who would perpetuate this psychopathic, internecine conflict of the ages to toddle off into the desert somewhere, far, far away, and blow each other up until there is no one left – a sort of Middle East Hunger Games, if you will – and leave decent people, Arab and Jew alike, to dwell together in the land in harmony as they have at many points in history. Knock down the borders. Don’t call the land Israel. Don’t call it Falastina. Call it “Rainë,” the Quenya word for Peace.
I don’t care who your God is. I don’t care if it’s יְהֹוָה or الله. I’m neither Jewish nor Muslim, but I can tell you this – whoever God may be, he’s probably mighty pissed with both sides of this millennia-long conflict. Stop it. If you don’t, this will be the inevitable result:
This is my opinion, and my opinion only. If you think otherwise, I volunteer you as tribute.
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