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Christian Weekly Urges U.S. Jews to Abandon Traditions

June 24, 1937
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The solution to the Jewish problem in America lies in the Jews’ giving up “the hopes and ideals and traditions of their fathers,” declares The Christian Century in an editorial entitled “Jewry and Democracy.”

Discussing the Jewish problem, the weekly states:

“We hold that the Jew himself is responsible, in a high degree, and that no solution of the problem is possible until his own degree of responsibility is recognized. The first step toward its recognition is to discern that his determination to maintain a permanent racial status is incompatible with democracy. Only then can he confront the root cause of his trouble and deal with it.”

The root cause of the Jewish problem, the editorial declares, is “the Jew’s immemorial and pertinacious obsession with an illusion, the illusion that his race, his people are the object of the special favor of God, who requires the maintenance of their racial integrity and separateness as the medium through which, soon or late, will be performed some mighty act involving human destiny.”

As a consequence, the weekly asserts, a vicious circle has been established until now “any attempt to solve the Jewish problem is confronted on the one hand by the complaint of the Jews that they do not participate freely in the social processes because society will not let them, and on the other, by the rationalized self-justification of society which affirms that it will not let them because they do not wish to.”

The vicious circle can be broken, according to the Century, in only one way — for “prophets to arise in Judaism who will begin to proclaim the terrible truth: that Judaism has been feeding its racial pride for millenniums on an illusion; that its martyrdom is in large measure self-invited” and that its racial integrity is no more important than any other race’s integrity.

“Such prophets, if they shall arise in Jewry,” the editorial continues, “will point out that it is just this obsession with the doctrine of a covenant race that now menaces the world, and that the Jews are the chief sufferers from it. Their idea of an integral race, with its own exclusive culture, hallowed and kept unified by a racial religion, is itself the prototype of Nazism.”

In introducing the question the magazine said that “Judaism rests upon an impossible basis” and “it is trying to pluck the fruits of democracy without yielding itself to the processes of democracy.”

“Any group which deliberately removes itself from participation in this open process of social change,” the Century states, “neither striving to modify the social status quo by openly proclaiming its own ideals, nor exposing itself freely to the normal influences of the social process is in for a hard time.”

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