Israelis seem to be better at caring about dramatic tragedies than the quotidian, day-to-day events that affect the fabric of life here: traffic accidents, domestic violence and the like receive far less attention than soldiers who are injured and terror attack victims. The still, small voices don’t get heard.
Update on Sunday: Here is the latest news link to the ongoing saga of Rose Pizem, the missing girl whose grandfather has been implicated in her disappearance.
In his new opinion piece on the Hartman Institute website, Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman calls on us all to listen for those voices and to act on them before tragedies occur:
I don’t think the horrific deaths of the three babies this week reflect a moral callousness and decay in our society at large, nor a larger crisis of values. They do, however, reflect a dulling of our senses, and a diminution of our ability to hear the cries of others. We find out again and again that there were signs on the wall when children are abused or murdered and when husbands beat or murder their wives, voices that called forth for help that were ignored.
That this week’s Torah portion, Shofetim, actually talks about this, as well, is coincidental – or is it?
Final note: Ruth Eglash of the Jerusalem Post weighs in with a timely interview with Hannah Slutzky, national supervisor for child affairs at the Welfare and Social Services Ministry, who says everyone has a responsibility to report suspected child abuse to authorities, including a private citizen who notices unusual behavior in a neighbor’s family.