By Aaron Coleman
Zionism (or better referred to as Jewish national self-determination) originated as a 19th century national movement seeking to restore a Jewish homeland in the land of Israel. The “other side”, anti-Zionism, in recent years has attempted to hijack the word away from its historical origins and instead use it as a catch-all for anything bad Israel does.
Anti-Zionism is opposition to Jews having a Jewish state in their ancestral homeland, and denies the Jewish people’s right to national self-determination. The idea that the Jewish people, alone of all the people in the world, should be denied the right to self-determination and the denial of Jewish peoples historical and religious connection to Israel is incredibly bigoted.
Calling for a Palestinian nation-state while simultaneously advocating for an end to the Jewish state is hypocritical at best, and at worst anti-Semitic. Example: You can criticize the American government without being anti-American. Just like you can criticize the government of Israel without resorting to anti-Semitism. But as soon as you call for the destruction of the American state, then you become anti-American. Criticism of Israel similar to what other countries face are legitimate. When anti-Zionists call for the end of the Jewish state, however, that is no longer criticism of policy, but rather anti-Semitism.
One question I’d ask anyone who is anti-Zionist is “What is your plan to protect Jews?” They seem to misunderstand why Israel exists. It exists because Israel was a necessity due to the world’s actions. When Jews feel unsafe due to anti-Semitism, they make Aliyah to Israel. I guarantee that this recent wave of anti-Semitism, violence and vandalism is going to create a lot of American new olim.
Former State legislator Aaron Coleman represented Kansas HD 37 in 2021 – 2023.