In an appearance on Bill Maher’s show last weekend, Bill Nye The Science Guy became Bill Nye The Religion Guy when he advised that European Jews should get to know their neighbors better.
Nye, Maher and Rob Reiner were discussing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s invitation to European Jews to move to Israel:
REINER: But you can understand it. There were German Jews that lived in Germany in the Second World War and that was their home. And you know at a certain point if your life is in danger you want to go someplace where you’re going to be protected.
NYE: So, what do you do about it? I think you get to know your neighbors. That’s going to take — does it take a century? Something like that?
So Nye thinks that if Jews engage in a century long neighborhood outreach program then, by golly, everything will be peachy.
All of this reminds me of this exchange in Blazing Saddles between Sheriff Bart and the Waco Kid played by Clevon Little and Gene Wilder, respectively:
SHERIFF BART: I’m rapidly becoming a big underground success in this town.
WACO KID: See? In another twenty-five years, you’ll be able to shake their hands in broad daylight.
Nye is discounting a millenium of history in which Jews have been expelled from various parts of Europe or otherwise ostracized on too many occasions to mention. Now throw in the Muslims into the mix and things really get dicey. Try walking around Paris with a yarmulke. This isn’t a question of outreach. For many Europeans, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, one Jew is one Jew too many.
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