Before I had children, I thought I knew what love was. I felt it for dear family and close friends gathered around the table at Shabbat dinner. I felt it when I married my husband Bobby 36 years ago. But when I had each of my three children, I felt a new depth of love like I had never known before. And when my first grandson, Levi, was born this past fall, well, I felt it strongest yet. There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for that precious boy.
I know you know what I mean. Every parent does.
It’s the kind of love that led my grandparents and Bobby’s to flee Russia and Poland over 80 years ago seeking safety for their families amid the slaughter of over six million Jews during the Holocaust. It’s the kind of love my school-teacher parents showed with every sacrifice made to provide for my siblings and me. And it’s the kind of love that inspires me now to take action against the rise of hate in our community and world today.
Watch or read the news on any given day and it’s not hard to see that hate is on the rise. When young people think it’s acceptable to vandalize property with symbols of hate, raise the Nazi salute, taunt students of color or harass indigenous elders, the message is clear: Our children are watching us. What we teach them has far-reaching consequences for the future of our world and for the safety of our communities and families.
Meanwhile, a startling number of young people today aren’t even aware so many Jews were murdered during the Holocaust, aren’t taught the full scope of slavery and Jim Crow laws, and don’t know the devastating legacy of genocides that happened on American soil; despite the fact that there are people alive today who survived these tragedies. We owe it to those who suffered through these shameful parts of our history to do better.
At ParentMap, we uphold a business value to build an inclusive community that informs, engages and inspires Puget Sound parents and families. This year, we’re dedicating consistent thoughtful coverage to teaching tolerance. In this issue, our dynamic cover and our feature Beyond Tolerance: Rejecting the Hate We See are part of that effort.
But beyond any one magazine article or issue, I’m inviting you to join us in committing to causes that work for peace in our community all year long — whether that means crossing oceans or social divides — for love.