On Sunday, October 2nd, 40 Jewish Voice for Peace-Boston members gathered on a cold, rainy day in Cambridge to welcome the Jewish New Year of 5777. We adapted traditional rituals to envision a future where the Jewish community has ended its support for racism and violence, from Boston to Palestine.

Tashlich is a a Rosh Hashanah (new year) ritual of symbolically casting our sins of the previous year into a body of water. This year, we cast off our collective complicity in oppression and recommit to the struggle for justice and human rights.

Below are photographs and a selection of the transgressions we cast off together (Adapted from JVP Seattle). After each transgression, we read responsively: “We take responsibility and will work to make it stop” as a stone was cast into the Charles River.

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Hardening our hearts instead of remembering what it means to be oppressed and dispossessed.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Allowing fear, instead of compassion, to dictate our actions.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Respecting national borders that exclude and diminish other people’s humanity.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Allowing violence against Palestinians to be committed in our names.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Destroying the infrastructure in Gaza and strangling the economy with the blockade.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Stealing Palestinian land and destroying Palestinian homes.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Ignoring Palestinian civil society’s call for boycott, divestment, & sanctions against Israeli oppression

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Speaking over and for Palestinians, rather than making space in the struggle for Palestinians to speak for themselves

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Not speaking out against anti-Arab racism and Islamophobia.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop. jvp-tashlich-23

Not speaking out against anti-Black racism.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Elevating anti-Semitism above other oppressions and refusing to see its interconnectedness.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Making invisible and marginalizing Jews of color around the world, including Israel, where they are the majority of the population.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop. jvp-tashlich-26

Not interrupting anti-Jewish oppression when we see or hear it happening.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Assuming all Jews are Ashkenazi (of European descent) and assuming every person of color is not a Jew.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Putting authority in the police and state instead of in our communities.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Allowing police violence against people of color in the name of security.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

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Allowing fear of making mistakes to stop us from speaking in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and Palestinian liberation.

We take responsibility and will work to make it stop.

 

Visit our facebook page for more photos.