Ethics

For the week ending 7 July 2012 / 16 Tammuz 5772

Do I Look Dangerous?

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

Question: Upon entering a supermarket in Jerusalem I am often asked by the guard at the door if I am carrying any weapon and then given a quick once over with his metal detector. With my very Jewish appearance - facial hair and modest garb - I hardly look like a terrorist. Is it right for me to take exception to being suspected of being one?

Answer: The guard is merely following the orders given to him by the people concerned with protecting you and the general public against terrorists who dress up like religious Jews to get by security checks. It is this sort of uncompromising scrutiny which discourages suicide bombers from attempting to carry out their deadly missions.

Let me share with you what happened to me a couple of years ago in the airport in Detroit. I was informed by the young lady at the check-in counter that I had been randomly selected for a spot check of my hand baggage and person. The fellow who did the checking in a very thorough manner explained to me in a thick Arab accent that he feels a need to protect a Jew like me "For aren't we cousins after all?"

Is Jerusalem safer than Detroit?

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