Thursday, November 05, 2009

UK: Falling birth rate is killing Europe, says chief rabbi Jonathan Sacks

Says Lord Sacks:

"Parenthood involves massive sacrifice: money, attention, time and emotional energy. Where today, in European culture with its consumerism and its instant gratification because you're worth it."

There was no room for sacrifice for "the sake of generations not yet born" in such a culture.

"Europe is dying," he concluded and compared the situation in the continent today to ancient Greece with its "sceptics, epicureans and cynics".

He said: "That is one of the unsayable truths of our time. We are undergoing the moral equivalent of climate change and no one is talking about it."

And he was also involved in an interesting court case:

The case involves a 12-year-boy's fight to gain a place at Britain's most successful Jewish school. M, a Jew who regularly attends a progressive synagogue, was told he could not be admitted to the JFS school because his mother had converted to Judaism in a procedure not recognised by the chief rabbi.

Overturning a previous judgment in favour of the school, the court of appeal said last June that a policy determining eligibility based on a person's descent, rather than religious practice, amounted to racial discrimination.

But this is ludicrous. There are black and oriental Jews. Jews are from all kinds of backgrounds. How can it be "racist"? Any person of any race can decide to become a Jew. Some people are "born" into it, according to whether the mother is Jewish. Since paternity isn't always known, but maternity is, that would make sense, wouldn't it?